Quality Handbook



AQH-B2-3b Postgraduate Programme Specification Template February 2014




Postgraduate Programme Specification Template




PG Certificate Leadership and Professional Development



























Occasion of Change

Change Author

Last Modified


Approval event

Claire Hoy

June 2017


Revised post Approval event in line with panel requirements

Ian Carr

August 2017











Name of programme: Leadership and Professional Development

Award title: PG Certificate

Is this part of a group of linked programmes between which students can transfer at agreed points? (eg a group of programmes with a common set of taught modules) No

Is the programme a top-up only? No

Level of award: 7

Awarding body: University of Sunderland

Which department is it in?  Sunderland Business School

Programme Studies Board: PG Business

Programme Leader:  TBA

How and where can I study the programme?


At Sunderland:


Full-time on campus


Part-time on campus


As work-based learning full-time


As work-based learning part-time


As a full-time sandwich course


As a part-time sandwich course


By distance learning



How long does the programme take?



Min number of years / months

Max number of years / months





5 months

15 months

Distance learning

5 months

15 months

Work-based learning

5 months

15 months




Learning and teaching strategy.

Our aim is to ensure the approach to teaching and learning on the Leadership and Professional Development programme is ‘engaging’ for students. This means that the learning journey is taken beyond consultation or participation and is instead, a rich and active partnership where students work alongside staff, other students and their organisations as partners. Our philosophy is to ensure Sunderland Business School provides an environment within which students, staff and organisations engage in ongoing narrative that aims to bring about demonstrable enhancement of the educational experience, student learning journey, student knowledge and skills. This requires that we continuously improve our learning environment based on personal engagement with students, collaboration between students, academic staff and organisations. It is where students are seen as an active part of the system because they are ‘experts in their student experience. It is an explicit intention to ensure students are encouraged, inspired and motivated by their learning and they see the relevance of what they have learned so they are able to better apply that in the module assessment process, across the programme holistically, and importantly within their chosen careers.

The philosophy adopts what is classed as a 'Learning Centred Paradigm' i.e. it situates learners at the centre of their learning journey. It empowers and motivates students, creates engagement, enhances satisfaction and supports student achievement and ultimately effective performance in the workplace. Importantly it considers students as partners in the learning journey. Partnership is framed as ‘a process of student engagement, understood as staff, students’ and employers learning and working together to foster engaged student learning and engaging learning and teaching enhancement. It demands all participants are actively engaged in and stand to gain from the process of learning and working together’ (HEA, 2014 p.10). The approach is positively linked with learning gain and achievement, is sophisticated in its approach and offers a more authentic relationship between students, academic staff and employers, with the explicit intention of delivering a genuinely transformative learning experience for all (HEA, 2014: Cook-Sather, Bovill and Felten, 2014).


Our philosophy will do the following:

  1. Transition and induct students so they are ready for their learning journey
  2. Enable students to develop their personal and professional capital – this kind of capital derives from a sense of belonging and from active relationships with others.
  3. Support the development of academic skills and understanding of the learning process ‘how to learn’
  4. Allow students to make sense of their learning through assimilating and integrating the information they have received (across the module and programme and how this manifests itself in the workplace)
  5. Stimulate critical thinking amongst students to enhance their professional capability in the workplace
  6. Give the students opportunities to express themselves and develop their academic and professional voice
  7. Create an environment where the student, academic and where appropriate, the organisation create a more cohesive relationship (trust)
  8. Enable opportunities for developmental feedback and feed-forward to enhance learning, personal and professional development
  9. Encourage the cognitive and affective development of the students
  10. Create greater clarity, integration and alignment between the knowledge transfer (lecture), the workshop/seminar activities, the independent learning students need to engage with and the assignment (constructive alignment)  this usually leads to much greater engagement with independent learning as the student sees it as an important element of their learning
  11. To develop the students professional identity (personal distinctiveness) and attune that to impact positively on their chosen career path.


Retention strategy

The Learning Teaching and Assessment Strategy recognises the University’s strong and continuing commitment to access and equality of opportunity and in light of the University’s success in widening participation, the programme team are concerned to ensure that all learners are retained through receiving appropriate support and guidance throughout the duration of their study and beyond. Student support however, is also a principal motivation in the design of the programme and as such, the programme begins with a one day induction to prepare and transition students ready for their learning journey. The induction focuses on academic practice, developing critical thinking skills, research and critical reflection. 


Coaching System

As part-time and potentially work based learners there will be a focus on ‘coaching and mentoring’ rather than ‘traditional personal tutoring’.  Coaching and mentoring better reflects practice within an organizational context and supports study skills development and transference of learning into the workplace.  These needs will be met through embedding online or face to face coaching sessions.  The purpose of these sessions is to:

  • Support critical reflection on learning and feedback to aid personal and professional development
  • Identify opportunities for enhancing career prospects


Studies Advice

The academic coach associated with the PLSGs will be the first point of contact for studies advice on particular tasks that learners have been asked to complete.  Academic coaches and students will meet throughout the programme with specific intentions to support reflection on learning and support progress with the final programme assessment.


Personal Development Planning

The personal development planning (PDP) process provides an opportunity for learners to practice self-management skills that are beneficial to them both as students and as employees. It assists learners to:

            Take responsibility for their own learning

            Be aware of how learning relates to a wider context

            Improve general skills for study and career management

            Provide evidence of achievements


Learner Support on the eLearning Portal (VLE)

Learners will be given detailed, hands-on training on the use of the VLE as part of their induction.  They will be encouraged to post questions or initiate discussions through a number of module spaces and through the Programme space, especially as part of the PLSG process.  Learners will be directed at induction to web-links to University student support facilities. In addition, learners will have access via VLE to the Study Skills suite of online tutorials.  Learners will also have access to online downloadable podcast lectures and assessment guidance surgeries.  Online support will also be available in the form of academic coaching sessions.




The Postgraduate Certificate has been developed to support development and enhancement of effective employability and leadership skills to sustain and elevate the personal identity of learners. The modules are underpinned by approaches designed to enhance students’ employability. Employability is defined by Holmes (2001, 2013) as possession and acquisition of skills, social positioning, and the assertion that employability is a process, a constantly evolving “identity”.

Further, the concept of identity is explained by Hinchcliffe & Jolley (2011) as Values (including trust & integrity); Intellect (discipline based skills and knowledge); Performance (including ability to develop & learn); Engagement (with people). 


It is our belief that graduates will be more employable if they have a clearer understanding of their identity, both self perceived and that which is recognised by others (Holmes, 2013).

The University’s role will be to provide our students with opportunities to explore and discover their unique identity and encourage engagement with experiences which will increase self efficacy and provide tangible evidence of that identity.


This philosophy underpins our approach to employability which can be re-conceptualised as Professional Identity, an approach which is consistent with academic thinking and professional practice across a range of industries and sectors.  Teaching and learning on the programme will be based around a blended approach to learning which encompasses, face to face lecture style sessions, online lectures and workshop materials, online or face to face coaching/mentoring and online, face to face learning and assessment support sessions and work based, inquiry based and problem based learning elements.


The students will be engaged in co-construction of their assessment topics and approaches with the academic coach on the programme. 

What will I know or be able to do at the end of the programme?

By the end of this part of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:



K1. Critical understanding of career diagnosis tools and techniques and job search methods

K2. Identification and critical appraisal of work based leadership skills and competencies, values and behaviours

K3. Knowledge of recruitment and selection methods and processes

K4. Analytical and interpretive knowledge of purposeful reflection

K5. Analytical and evaluative knowledge of organizational analysis techniques



S1. Assessment of and planning for personal and professional development to enhance career prospects

S2. Construction, implementation and evaluation of their personal development plan

S3. Critical evaluation and application of suitable job search methods including the ability to create strategies to promote themselves to potential employers

S4. Development of skills to enhance employability/career advancement

S5. Critical reflection upon professional development achieved through the work based analysis of a business issue

S6. Tangible evidence of leadership and decision making in an organisational environment



What will the programme consist of?

The programme will consist of one 60 credit module: Leadership and Professional Development. Embracing principles of diagnosis, action planning, execution and evaluation, this module focuses on personal and job related development in a professional career context. Students are encouraged to explore how they fit into the world of employment, to take their understanding of self to discover and investigate professional environments, roles and cultures which are compatible with their needs and abilities.


This module will encourage students to reflect upon their ambitions and options and provide them with the tools and the environment to identify and explore career and employment goals. The content will enable them to diagnose, plan and execute appropriate actions to achieve these goals, which may include knowledge and practice of recruitment processes, appropriate work experience, identification and promotion of personal achievements and development of networks.


Organisations value and promote professional behaviours which drive and enhance business success as defined by organisational mission and purpose. Achievement of mission is driven by appropriate behaviour which is in turn explained by professional competencies, beliefs and values. The module will provide resources and the environment through which students can explore the impact that their behaviour has, explain that behaviour and examine ways in which their behaviour can be compatible with that required in a business environment.


The module will help students to discover and work towards securing a professional role or enhance their current career path which they have identified as fulfilling their needs and is compatible with their skills, values and attributes.


The module will also engage students in a place based project. This will be a work-based project (WBP) and is an excellent developmental opportunity which enhances the student’s organizational and specialist knowledge. These elements are crucial to this module and subsequent career progression. Students who are in a workplace will be able to negotiate a project within their workplace.  Students who are yet to gain a position will be offered a range of case study place based projects which will cover a range of subject areas including entrepreneurial projects. At the beginning of the module, students will be given support to help decide on the potential focus for the project in partnership with their academic coach.  As part of the place based projects, students will also develop a fuller understanding of how to take responsibility for their personal and professional development, enhance their understanding of an organization and make an enhanced contribution to evaluating work based issues. The project is intended to provide evidence of the student’s personal and professional qualities via a tangible work-based achievement. This module has two key elements:


Element 1 - Practical Placement Project or Study involving the identification and examination of an organisational issue, initiative or processes in agreement with the employer and academic coach. Students may consider a problem that requires a solution, the development of an initiative to effect positive change or an investigative study into a contextual or competitive issue which may include an entrepreneurial opportunity. Students will devise, plan and undertake their work into an agreed area of value to the organization under the guidance and supervision of the academic coach and where appropriate, the organization.


Element 2 - Reflective Practice will concentrate on the introduction and application of reflective and reflexive practice tools and approaches, and centres on aspects of reflective and reflexive leadership practice. The philosophy of this element is to enhance and focus the students’ self awareness, self evaluation, leadership and professional development through the application of a range of reflective practices, techniques and tools.


Summative Assessment

The students will be required to complete two summative assessments directly related to the key elements of the module:


Assessment 001: A reflective practice portfolio which demonstrates and examines the student’s professional development and progression throughout the module and programme, noting how this has/will impact on their future career success. (Due to the nature of the assessment, no word limit applies)


Assessment 002: An individual report centred on an organisation-based project of value or study investigating organisational initiative, issues or processes (5000 words). This element will have formative stages in the form of a detailed proposal.  The report will also include the production of a poster summarising the project, its findings and concluding recommendations


How will I be taught?


Scheduled teaching activities

Independent study


Where possible


Blended Learning: Students will attend the University for a one day compulsory induction which will provide context for the programme as well as introducing the students to critical thinking models, writing with purpose techniques and coaching concepts. The primary delivery of lectures will be facilitated via online podcasts with regular contact with the academic coach through emails and Skype.  Two individual coaching sessions will be conducted – the mode will be agreed between the student and their academic coach.  Face to face and online learning enhancement and assessment surgeries will also be embedded.  


Tutorials: The role of the academic coach will assume great importance in the early stages of the programme in order to provide support for the self-directed elements of the programme and to provide direction and guidance in the compilation of the project plans and reflective work-based portfolios.  The University VLE (CANVAS) is expected to play an important role in the successful functioning of the PLSGs, allowing students who are geographically remote from each other and from the University to develop their programme activities.


Lectures: Formal input of models, concepts and theories across a range of subject areas designed to provide not just underpinning knowledge, but to place some structural frameworks into the student learning experience.  These will be delivered via online lectures within CANVAS. 


Independent Learning: Students will be given a series of structured tasks and activities to undertake.  These will include reading, purposeful writing tasks and thinking, researching material and data from a workplace, personal reflection and diagnostic evaluations.  After a period of induction, students will be encouraged to practice these independent skills as an integral part of the programme, without which personal progress is likely to be impaired.


Self-Directed Learning: Although this programme is designed to be very practical and skills based, the programme team recognise that sound study and research skills will contribute to the learner’s ability to continually update their knowledge and skills.  Work and project based assignments will demand self-reliance and pro-activity on the part of the learner in order for them to be able to set their own study and research plans.


Further information on the programme can be found in the Programme Regulations.

A summary of the types of teaching, learning and assessment on the programme can be found in the Matrix of Modes of Teaching.


How will I be assessed and given feedback?


Written examinations



Practical assessments



A summary of the types of teaching, learning and assessment in each module of the programme can be found in the Matrix of Modes of Teaching.

The generic assessment criteria which we use can be found here. Some programmes use subject-specific assessment criteria which are based on the generic ones.


This programme uses the Generic University Assessment Criteria



This programme uses the Subject Specific Assessment Criteria




The University regulations can be found here.


This programme will be assessed by two summative assignments that will assess all learning outcomes and will draw upon the learning gained through the programme integrated with the students work-based development. The assessments are designed to complement one another and to test and evidence the professional development of the student.


The programme will also focus significantly on formative assessment throughout.  The use of reflective journals and personal development plans as part of the assessment process will ensure that additional learning opportunities are explored as the students complete these tasks.  This will afford learners the opportunity to test theories and models in the place based project to reinforce learning opportunities on the programme.  The formative tasks will also provide a practical vehicle for summative assessment.


Feedback on formative work will be delivered via a variety of means; most important of these is the VLE discussion board where PLSGs  group members will be encouraged to review and debate their peers’ work and subsequently make sense of their own work in the light of this review.  Academic coaches will support learners in the execution of formative tasks and will provide feedback via CANVAS and in supported learning enhancement/assessment surgeries


All summative pieces of work will be marked by members of the programme team.  Academic coaches will provide guidance and offer feedback on formative tasks.  Whilst learners will be encouraged to seek support and guidance on work based tasks from within their organizations, workplace mentors will not be involved in assessing or marking student work.


The assessment has clearly defined assessment criteria which will include criteria linked to the module learning outcomes and assessment methodology employed. The key aim of this assessment strategy is to develop understanding of and confidence in the programme curriculum and to produce graduates who can make a clear link between the programme, its content and their career enhancement. The strategy supports this programme and the standard of assessment is comparable to assessment on programmes of a similar level in the Business School.










Teaching, learning and assessment matrix


Award, Route (if applicable) and Level

New/Existing/ Modified  Module (N/E/MM)

Module Title

Module Code

Module Credit Value

Whether core or option

Must choose (i.e. designated option):

Assessment weighting – give % weight for each assessment item


Module leader

Other comment (if required)

Date of Entry on SITS.

N/MM only

(After event)


PG Certificate


Leadership and Professional Development





50% Portfolio

50% Place Based Project















How does research influence the programme? 

The programme is designed to be research-led and research-based. Fundamental to the programme is that research is made meaningful to students so they understand the personal, professional, intellectual and importantly, the practical relevance of research.


Research-led:  the curriculum emphasises the teaching of the subject content from an academically robust stance i.e. students learn about the latest research in the subject field where the emphasis is on understanding research findings, rather than the research process, and research is presented as information content. Academic depth and rigour is achieved through ensuring the design incorporates current research literature in the field of study. It includes embedding current research both faculty and beyond. Students will be engaged in locating, collecting, referencing, critiquing, applying evidence, challenging assumptions, questioning and interpreting contemporary research articles, conference papers and case studies. Research active Faculty will also deliver guest speaker sessions within the online podcast lectures for each module.


Research-based:  The programme and curriculum emphasises students undertaking inquiry-based and problem based learning. The learning division between lecturer and student is minimised and the teaching mode is based on cooperation/dialogue. This research will involve primary research within the student’s organisation or secondary research into a live case study organization with the intention of addressing organizational issues and/or opportunities for enhanced organizational behaviour and performance



Sessions Informed  by Faculty Staff Research

Personal and Professional Development

Managing and Leading from the Middle

Ethical Responsible Leadership





Matrix of modes of teaching, learning and assessment




Core / optional

Modes of T&L

Modes of Assessment















Leadership and Professional Development



Online Lectures, independent study, Online coaching and assessment surgeries

Personal Portfolio (50%)


Place Based Project (50%)
















How will the programme prepare me for employment?

The programme will give students the opportunity to develop advanced skills and knowledge which they can use in the future. Some postgraduate programmes are associated with a particular career path but most skills can be applied to a range of employment situations. The skills which this programme is designed to develop are listed below.

  • Applying critical thinking to practical and theoretical problems in an organizational context
  • Demonstrate ethical, responsible and sustainable management and leadership behaviours and practices in an organizational context
  • Demonstrate personal and interpersonal competence required by employers in order to operate effectively in a management/leadership role within an organizational context


For information about other opportunities available to our students who study on campus, click here.


Professional statutory or regulatory body (PSRB) accreditation. Choose one of the following.


PSRB accreditation is not relevant to this programme 

PSRB accreditation is currently being sought for this programme


This programme currently has PSRB accreditation


The programme is currently accredited until: N/A

The relevant PSRB(s) is/are:  N/A

The programme is recognised as: Postgraduate Certificate in Leadership and Professional Development

There are programme-specific regulations relating to the following. Details are given in the programme regulations:


The modules to be studied


Pass-marks for some or all modules and/or parts

(elements) of modules 


Placement requirements


Attendance requirements


Professional practice requirements


Final or overall mark for the award  





Interim or exit awards are not accredited. 




See Programme Regulations Form, for questions 36 and 37




What are the admissions requirements?


The admissions policy incorporates the guidance from Corporate and Recruitment Services and the Faculty of Business, Law and Tourism Recruitment Office.

It will be usual for students to possess an honours degree at any classification. The programme is only available to students the year following graduation.


Where an applicant's first Language is not English, there must be evidence of Level 6 attainment in the International English Language Testing Scheme and/or a pass in the University's own English Language Proficiency Test.



The University’s standard admissions requirements can be found in the university regulations.

Programme-specific requirements which are in addition to those regulations are given below. 


Can students enter with advanced standing?




If yes, to which Stages?

Stage 1


Stage 2


Stage 3


Stage 4



If yes, with what qualifications?


The University has a process by which applicants whose experience to date already covers one or more modules of the programme they are applying for may seek Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL). Full details can be found here but if you think that this may be relevant to you, please contact the department which offers the programme you are interested in.


What kind of support and help will there be?

  1. Coaching System: As part-time learners there will be a focus on ‘coaching and mentoring’ rather than ‘traditional personal tutoring’. Coaching and mentoring better reflects practice within an organizational context and supports study skills development and transference of learning to support career enhancement. These needs will be met with a combination of a Peer Learning and Support Group (PLSG) and the academic coach.
  2. Studies Advice: The academic coach associated with the PLSGs will be the first point of contact for studies advice on particular tasks that learners have been asked to complete.  Academic coaches will work closely with the programme leader to ensure that they are familiar with the tasks and understand what is required of the learners at any point in the programme.
  3. Personal Development Planning: The personal development planning (PDP) process provides an opportunity for learners to practice self-management skills that are beneficial to them both as students and as employees. It assists learners to:
  • Take responsibility for their own learning
  • Be aware of how learning relates to a wider context
  • Improve general skills for study and career management
  • Provide evidence of achievements
  1. Learner Support on the eLearning Portal (VLE): Learners will be given detailed, hands-on training on the use of the VLE as part of their induction. They will be encouraged to post questions or initiate discussions through a number of module spaces and through the Programme space, especially as part of the PLSG process. Learners will be directed at induction to web-links to University student support facilities. In addition, learners will have access via VLE to the Study Skills suite of online tutorials
  2. The University and Faculty support widening participation and encourage and support students from all backgrounds, cultures, religions,  those with disabilities and the LGBTI community
  3. The University provides a range of professional support services including health and well-being (, counselling (, disability support (, and a Chaplaincy ( Click on the links for further information.


In the university as a whole: The University provides a range of professional support services including health and well-being, counselling, disability support, and a Chaplaincy. Click on the links for further information.

in a partner college:

Please see the relevant college prospectus or website for details of student support if you are planning to study in one of our partner colleges.



What resources will I have access to?

On campus

General Teaching and Learning Space





Information about the University’s facilities can be found here.


University Library & Study Skills Services, (ULSSS), supports students with the provision of a high quality learning environment, comprehensive print and online resource collections, 1400 study places, 300+ PCs, My Module Resources and study skills support.


All students have the full use of the University’s two libraries. The libraries are open extensive hours and are staffed for 59 hours a week, including weekends and evenings.  During core teaching weeks, The Murray library is open 24x7 and St Peters library is open until 12 midnight.


The ULSSS web site provides a gateway to information resources and services for students both on and off campus. Tailored resources and support are available from specific subject areas of the ULSSS web site and a ‘Live Chat’ function enables student to access library support and help 24/7.


My Module Resources

Module reading lists are live interactive resource lists available from within online module spaces on the VLE and the University’s library website.


What do you get?

          Real time library information, both availability and location of print books, plus being able to place reservations on books that are already on loan

          Allows you to set up RSS alerts for changes and additions to your Module Resource  list

          Smartphone and tablet friendly – providing QR capture, touch screen functionality and e-resource access


How does this help you?

          Getting the right resources easily from flexible access points

          Receive guidance from your tutor on what to read  at a point of need by using search filters

          Access to a wider range of resources to support learning.


Study Skills Support

University Library Services includes a robust study skills support offer, available to all our students across the University both on and off campus, contributing to students’ attainment and the quality of their experience.


Skills delivery options include:

  • Online Skills Support including:  videos, webinars and Skype sessions and online tutorials. Online assignment drop-ins using Live Chat will be held weekly to engage those students not on campus and provide additional support at the point of contact.
  • On campus assignment skills drop-in events throughout key teaching weeks when students are encouraged to attend with any assignment queries.
  • Embedded skills sessions - Throughout teaching periods embedded skills sessions are a key element to support academic learning. Study skills support team and Liaison Librarians continue to cultivate relationships and provide the support necessary in their subject areas.
  • One to One - Study Skills Advisers will be on hand to advise and support students in a range of study skills including: effective reading, reporting writing, academic writing and referencing, note taking, critical thinking, analysis and evaluation, reflective writing, group work and presentation skills. Sessions will be booked centrally, catering for embedded academic sessions, study groups and 1 to 1 advice. For those studying independently away from the university campus, 1 to 1 support is available via Skype.


If an embedded skills session best suits student learning outcomes, academic staff will be asked to complete an online request form so that a session can be arranged.

The request form is available from:                                                    


Access to other libraries

There may be occasions when students studying postgraduate programmes would find it useful to use other university libraries for their studies, in addition to the resources available at the University of Sunderland. Postgraduate students may be able to borrow items or to access collections on a reference basis at a number of institutions throughout the UK by joining the Sconul Access Scheme.


Please see the relevant college prospectus or website for details of college learning resources if you are planning to study in one of our partner colleges


  1. Are there any additional costs on top of the fees?


No, but all students buy some study materials such as books and provide their own basic study materials.


Yes (optional) All students buy some study materials such as books and provide their own basic study materials. In addition there are some are additional costs for optional activities associated with the programme (see below)


Yes (essential) All students buy some study materials such as books and provide their own basic study materials. In addition there are some are essential additional costs associated with the programme (see below)




How are student views represented?

All taught programmes in the University have student representatives for each programme who meet in a Student-Staff Liaison Committee (SSLC) where they can raise students’ views and concerns. The Students’ Union and the faculties together provide training for student representatives. SSLCs and focus groups are also used to obtain student feedback on plans for developing existing programmes and designing new ones. Feedback on your programme is obtained every year through module questionnaires and informs the annual review of your programme. Student representatives are also invited to attend Programme and Module Studies Boards which manage the delivery and development of programmes and modules. Faculty Academic Committee also has student representation. This allows students to be involved in higher-level plans for teaching and learning. At university level students are represented on University level Committees by sabbatical officers who are the elected leaders of the Students’ Union.

The University’s student representation and feedback policy can be found here.


Every year we participate in the national Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES) which is run by the Higher Education Academy.




National subject benchmarks

The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education publishes benchmark statements which give guidance as to the skills and knowledge which graduates in various subjects and in certain types of degree are expected to have. They do not cover all subjects at postgraduate  level but those which exist can be found at here.


Are there any benchmark statements for this programme?





The QAA also publishes a Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ), which defines the generic skills, and abilities expected of students who have achieved awards at a given level and with which our programmes align. The FHEQ can be found here.


How are the quality and standards of the programme assured?

The programme is managed and quality assured through the University’s standard processes. Module and Programme Studies Boards that include student representatives oversee programmes. Each year each module leader provides a brief report on the delivery of the module, identifying strengths and areas for development, and the programme team reviews the programme as a whole.  The purpose of this is to ensure that the programme is coherent and up-to-date, with suitable progression through the programme, and a good fit (alignment) between what is taught and how students learn and are assessed - the learning outcomes, content and types of teaching, learning and assessment. Student achievement, including progress through the programme and the way in which the final award is made, is kept under review. The programme review report is sent to the Programme Studies Board and the Faculty in turn reports issues to the University’s Quality Management Sub-Committee (QMSC).


External examiners are appointed to oversee and advise on the assessment of the programme. They ensure that the standards of the programme are comparable with those of similar programmes elsewhere in the UK and are also involved in the assessment process to make sure that it is fair. They are invited to comment on proposed developments to the programme. Their reports are sent to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) as well as to the Faculty so that issues of concern can be addressed.


The University reviews all programmes on a six-yearly cycle to identify good practice and areas for enhancement. Programmes are revalidated through this review process. These reviews include at least one academic specialist in the subject area concerned from another UK university. The University is subject to external review by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education on a six-year cycle. Their review reports for Sunderland can be found at here.

Further information about our quality processes can be found here.

















Please also complete the SITS form.





Appendix 1




(Form to be completed electronically by the Faculty and  forwarded to the QAE Quality Officer supporting the Approval event, or sent to MISD for faculty devolved processes before sending to QAE)



Exit Award: Title of programme/award

Leadership and Professional Development

If replacement for existing, specify title of old



Business, Law and Tourism


Sunderland Business School

SITS Programme/Short Course code[1]


Programme Studies Board[2]


UCAS code[3] (if applicable).  If other please state method.


JACS code[4]


Qualification Level / Qualification Aim

Postgraduate Certificate


Modes of delivery and duration:


Full time       yes/no   …….. years

Sandwich     yes/no   …….. years

Part time      yes/no   Flexible

Work Based Learning  yes/no

On-campus  yes/no

Off-campus  yes/no 

CSP Only. Other subject combinations not allowed with this subject:


Programme/Subject/Short Course Leader:


Date of Approval /Modification/Review


Date of next review (QAE to complete)


Start date of programme

January 2018

Number of intakes per annum and likely month(s) intake(s) starts.


Intake starts will be dependent on market demand




Confirm funding arrangements for programme e.g. HEFCE/TDA/NHS/Other[5]


If it is TDA, is it primary/secondary/F.E./Other (please state)


Is the programme Open or Closed[6]:





If yes please attach completed form AQH-Ciii2



Are there to be programme specific regulations?


If yes, please attach completed form



Please complete details

UK                     yes/no


Overseas           yes/no

Institution                                      Collaborative model[7]         Funding arrangements[8]


…………………………………………..            ………………………………         ….……………………..






Interim award title

Credits required

Interim structure

Please show mandatory requirements if applicable e.g. core module codes

Not Applicable







   DETAILS SUPPLIED BY:Claire Hoy       DATE:June 2017


For QAE  use only:  Circulation list: Quality Assurance & Enhancement (files) MISD (J Ruffell), Admissions  (E Wilson), Recruitment (Les  Brown, Catryn Davies), Student Office (L Dixon), Examinations (B Muldowney), Planning (David Balme) Learning Development Services (Malcolm Creen) Central Timetabling (Lesley Scott)  + for collaborative programmes: SRBP Carole Green/Peter Elliott, marketing (Judith Green)







[1] To be allocated in consultation with MISD team in SRBP

[2] Programme Studies/Assessment Board that will have management responsibilities for the programme.

[3] Please contact Admissions Manager for code

[4] JACS code = e.g. (V1) History, (G5) Computing Science, etc. for information contact relevant AD

[5] Please confer with David Balme for funding status for programme

[6] An Open programme constitutes an open admissions policy.  A Closed programme is normally specific to one client only.  If in doubt please consult Academic Services or Planning and Finance.


[7] As per QAE guidelines

[8] Please contact David Balme for confirmation of funding details