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Bachelor of Business (Accounting): Re-accreditation 17 July 2014

Renewal of course accreditation

Report on renewal of accreditation of three higher education courses of study offered by Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd (trading as Stott's Colleges)

 

TEQSA has determined, under section 56 of the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency Act 2011 (the TEQSA Act), to renew accreditation of the following higher education courses of study offered by Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd (trading as Stott's Colleges) for a period of four years until 17 July 2018:

  • Bachelor of Business
  • Bachelor of Business (Accounting)
  • Bachelor of Business (Community Services Management)

TEQSA has, under subsection 53(1) of the TEQSA Act, imposed 5 conditions on the accreditation of the above courses of study. Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd must:

 

Condition 1:

Provide evidence to TEQSA:

a) by 28 August 2014, of completion of the review of all units of study to be delivered in Semester 2 2014. The interim curriculum review report must include the revised unit outlines and a summary of the changes made to the versions of the units of study reviewed by TEQSA external experts in December 2013

b) by 1 November 2014, of completion of the review of all units of study to be delivered in in Semester 3/Summer semester 2014/2015. The interim curriculum review report must include the revised unit outlines and a summary of the changes made to the versions of the units of study reviewed by TEQSA external experts in December 2013. The report must also include consideration of the requirements of Provider Course Accreditation Standards 1.9 for those units taught and assessed in both standard and block modes of study.

 

Condition 2:

Provide evidence to TEQSA, by 16 March 2015, of the review of all accredited courses of study and units of study offered by Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd. The full curriculum review report must include:

  • revised course documentation for all courses and units demonstrating that the courses of study have an overall coherence and summaries of the changes made by Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd to the versions reviewed by TEQSA external experts in 2013
  • evidence of Academic Board approval of the review of the Bachelor of Business courses of study

 

Condition 3:

Provide evidence to TEQSA that accurate information is available to prospective and current students:

a) by 1 November 2014:

  • revised information to reflect the changes made during the reviews including the descriptions of the course content, structure, sequence and delivery in both standard and block modes.
  • information for domestic and international students about internal articulation from Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd's VET Diplomas to Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd's Bachelor degrees

b) by 31 December 2014:

  • 2015 Prospectus/Handbook for domestic and international students with a summary of changes made.

 

Condition 4:

Provide evidence to TEQSA, by 1 November 2014 of a workforce plan detailing the profile and appointment of academic staff members with recent teaching and course development experience in the business and accounting disciplines, appropriate for the delivery of AQF level 7 qualifications.

 

Condition 5:

Provide to TEQSA the 2014 and 2015 annual course reports to Academic Board and relevant Course Advisory Committee and Academic Board minutes demonstrating Stott's responses to the analysis of the student performance data within 28 days of the approval of the relevant Academic Board meeting minutes.

Background to Decision

Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd (trading as Stott's Colleges) submitted an application for renewal of accreditation of three courses of study under Part 4 of the TEQSA Act. Subsection 45(4) of the TEQSA Act requires a registered higher education provider who is not authorised to self-accredit the course of study to apply to TEQSA for accreditation. Subsection 56(4) enables TEQSA to renew accreditation of a course of study for a period not exceeding seven years.

Main Reasons for the Decision

TEQSA has determined that the three higher education courses of study submitted by Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd (trading as Stott's Colleges) for accreditation comply with the Provider Course Accreditation Standards. The course accreditation covers delivery at all Australian sites.

TEQSA considers that the decision to apply conditions to Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd (trading as Stott's Colleges) application for accreditation of three courses of study is consistent with the basic principles for regulation in Part 2 of the TEQSA Act, as Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd (trading as Stott's Colleges) is at risk of not complying with a number of the Threshold Standards. TEQSA considers that the risks of non-compliance with the Threshold Standards involve a number of matters that may affect Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd (trading as Stott's Colleges) capacity to manage and deliver its higher education awards.

The broad issues which relate to the three higher education courses of study include:

  • The courses as originally submitted did not meet the AQF level 7 specifications, however Stott's provided evidence that all units are being revised by an external expert. This review and revision of course documentation is needed prior to delivery in 2014 as there is a risk Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd (trading as Stott's Colleges) will not comply with Provider Course Accreditation Standards Section 1
  • Inconsistent course information for students has been submitted. Review and revision of information for prospective and current students is needed to reflect the revised course documentation to reduce any risk of non-compliance with Provider Course Accreditation Standards 2.4
  • Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd has not provided adequate evidence that all staff have an understanding of current scholarship in the discipline that they teach. TEQSA considers that the risks of non-compliance with Provider Course Accreditation Standards 4.1 and 4.2 can be addressed with conditions requiring Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd to provide information about its academic workforce plan and recent appointment of a Curriculum Director.
  • Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd has not demonstrated appropriate progression and completion rates for the current period of accreditation, however attrition rates have improved in the latest year. TEQSA considers that the risks of non-compliance with Provider Course Accreditation Standards 5 and PCAS 6 be addressed with conditions requiring Acknowledge Education Pty Ltd to provide copies of annual course reports for 2014 and 2015.

In accordance with subsections 53(2) and 53(3) of the TEQSA Act, TEQSA may vary or revoke a condition imposed on the registration of a higher education provider, either on its own initiative, or upon application by the provider for variation or revocation.