POSTGRADUATE TAUGHT AWARDS
Candidates may qualify for an award of Swansea University under these regulations upon successful completion of one of the following approved programmes of study: Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or a Master's Degree (MA, MSc, LLM, MBA, MFin). Candidates may pursue a programme on a full-time or part-time basis or a combination of both (mixed mode of attendance).
All Master’s Programmes shall be assessed by examination/coursework and submission of piece/pieces of directed independent learning.
Directed independent learning is defined as a single piece or pieces of self-directed learning (undertaken under the guidance of a supervisor), totalling 60 credits, which provide(s) an opportunity to engage in extended research on one or more aspects of the syllabus relating to the programme. The independent work can take a variety of forms, chosen to be the most appropriate for the programme, and/or to enhance the employability prospects of the students. This can be defined at programme approval and will be equivalent to the effort required to prepare a dissertation of up to 20,000 words.
All candidates must enrol as students of Swansea University and pay the appropriate fees prescribed by the University. As enrolled students, candidates must comply with the University's academic and general regulations.
Full-time Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or Master’s candidates may not normally concurrently be enrolled on another Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or Master’s degree programme* leading to the award of a qualification in this or another university/institution without the express permission of the Chair of the Regulations, Quality and Standards Committee.
*Staff members enrolled on the PGCtHE as a condition of employment or probation are exempt from the above concurrent enrolment regulation.
Students enrolled on joint programmes between Swansea and another institution(s) are exempt from the above concurrent enrolment regulation in so far as it relates to concurrent enrolment at the partner institution(s) for the same programme.
The candidature of students found to be in breach of Regulation 1.3 above, shall normally be cancelled with immediate effect.
Faculties/Schools, which are subject to professional accreditation and/or Sponsorship Body requirements, may apply stricter regulations provided that the students have been duly notified in advance and that it is a requirement of a Professional/Sponsorship Body.
A candidate for postgraduate taught award must hold one of the following qualifications prior to commencement of study:
- An initial Bachelor’s degree (normally 2.2 or above) or a Master’s degree of a UK University.
- An initial Bachelor’s degree (normally 2.2 or above.) or a Masters of a recognised European or overseas University already approved or subsequently approved by UK ENIC.
- An initial Bachelor’s degree (normally 2.2 or above) or a Masters of a recognised European or overseas University approved by the University's Matriculation Sub-Committee.
- A non-graduate qualification which the University has deemed to be equivalent to graduation.
In addition some programmes may require stricter or specific entry conditions due to professional Body/Sponsorship body requirements.
Conditions of offer may include requirements relating to matriculation (see Regulations 2.7 and 2.8 below).
Applicants for taught postgraduate programmes, who do not have an undergraduate degree, must instead have significant relevant work or other experience, which has been assessed by the Admissions Selectors as appropriate for admission to the relevant programme.
A prospective candidate who already holds a doctoral level qualification (including PhD, the Engineering Doctorate and Taught Doctorates etc.) shall show that the postgraduate taught programme to be pursued is in a different field of study from that for which the Doctoral degree was awarded.
Irrespective of a candidate's entry qualifications, the University reserves the right to satisfy itself that a candidate is of the required academic standard to complete the programme of study proposed.
Prior to admission to the programme of study, Faculties/Schools must ensure that a candidate can communicate effectively in English, in both speech and writing. TOEFL or IELTS tests (or the equivalent) are applicable and guidance can be obtained from the Admissions Office as regards the pass level appropriate to a given study or the pre-course teaching that may be necessary to allow a candidate to proceed to postgraduate studies. The University sets a minimum for postgraduate candidates of 6.5 IELTS (or equivalent). Applications may be made to the Admissions Committee for a lower or higher equivalent.
Candidates must disclose character and suitability issues as required by the University or otherwise in relation to their programme of study. The onus is on the candidate to provide any evidence they consider necessary and appropriate to enable the University to make a decision on their application. Failure to disclose a character and suitability issue or evidence of those issues necessary and appropriate to enable the University to make a decision on an application, may lead to the University withdrawing a student or not admitting a student to a programme of study.
Matriculation is the formal admission of a candidate to a programme of study leading to a degree or other academic award of the University. Candidates who have not previously studied at Swansea University must provide evidence of their degree or equivalent qualification as requested by the Admissions Office. This evidence will take the form of an official Bachelor certificate or official transcript confirming award of degree.
Candidates must have obtained a recognised qualification from an ‘approved’ institution (as stipulated by UK ECCTIS). If a particular institution/qualification is not recognised, the Admissions Office must submit a special case to the Chair of the Recruitment and Admissions Committee who will decide whether or not the qualifications submitted are acceptable. If a particular case is declined, the candidate’s offer of a place (which would have been conditional upon approval of their qualifications) will need to be withdrawn and/or the student will be deemed ineligible to enrol.
Candidates will be deemed ineligible to enrol where they do not meet the University’s requirements for matriculation (see Regulations 2.7 and 2.8 above). Where the candidate is deemed ineligible to enrol and/or fails to enrol within a prescribed enrolment period, this will result in the candidate’s candidature lapsing and the withdrawal of the candidate from the University (see Regulation 4).
Monitoring new policy
The right to monitor the policy is reserved and without limitation to independently verify evidence of qualifications using Qualification Check Service or Higher Education Degree Datacheck or equivalent. For the purpose of assessing the introduction of the new policy, 5% of the newly enrolled intake will be independently verified. The results will be reported at the February Recruitment and Admissions Committee to ensure that the policy is fit for purpose.
The University shall notify the relevant authorities, within a prescribed period in accordance with United Kingdom laws governing study in the UK, of students who have been withdrawn for failure to enrol on a programme of study within the prescribed enrolment period.
Faculties/Schools may offer multiple entry dates for some programmes, at the following points during the year: September, January, May and June. Faculties/Schools must specify entry dates in all programme literature.
The University expects all candidates to enrol in order to be recognised as a student of the University. All candidates shall enrol in accordance with the enrolment instructions for the particular programme of study and within the prescribed enrolment period.
Candidates are required to enrol within the prescribed enrolment period:
• If enrolling for the first time with the University;
• If enrolling for the first time on a particular programme of study;
• If progressing to the next level of study, the next year of study or in some cases, the next part of study and attending on a full-time or part-time basis;
• If the University is expecting a fee to be paid in accordance with the University’s regulations governing student finance and fees.
In order to enrol with the University, candidates, where applicable, are required to provide evidence of entitlement to study at the University in accordance with:
• The specific programme requirements.
• The University’s regulations governing matriculation.
• The laws governing study in the United Kingdom.
• Fitness to return to study regulations.
Where the candidate does not provide satisfactory evidence of entitlement to study at the University in accordance with Regulation 4.3 above and by the deadline stipulated by Education Services, the candidate will be deemed ineligible to enrol (unless Regulation 4.5 below applies).
Where the candidate meets all requirements to enrol (in accordance with Regulation 4.3) except for the University’s requirements governing matriculation, the candidate may, at the discretion of the Admissions Office, be permitted to provisionally enrol for a specified period of time, conditional upon the candidate agreeing to meet the University’s requirements governing matriculation by the deadline stipulated by the Admissions Office. If the candidate then fails to meet the University’s requirements governing matriculation by the deadline stipulated by the Admissions Office, the provisional enrolment will lapse, the candidate will be deemed ineligible to enrol and Regulation 4.6 below shall apply.
Where the candidate fails to enrol within a prescribed enrolment period, this will result in the candidate’s candidature lapsing and the withdrawal for non-enrolment of the candidate from the University.
Reinstatement of the candidature and permission to enrol late
The decision to approve or not approve permission to enrol late will be made by the Head of Academic Records or their nominee. To request permission to enrol late students must submit a Permission to enrol form within 10 working days of the date of the letter/email to the student confirming their withdrawal for non-enrolment.
In considering such applications the Head of Academic Records, or their nominee, shall consider:
- the timing of the application;
- the circumstances relating to the late application;
- recommendations from the student’s Faculty/School;
- the legal and financial requirements of enrolment;
- laws governing right to study in the university;
- the conditions and/or curtailment of the student’s visa (where appropriate);
- recommendations from admissions/compliance/finance/student records managers (where appropriate).
To request an admin review of the decision to not approve reinstatement of candidature and permission to enrol late, students must submit an Admin Review Form. A review and final decision will be made by the Associate Director of Student Operations or their nominee.
The University shall notify the relevant authorities, within a prescribed period in accordance with United Kingdom laws governing study in the UK, of students who have been withdrawn for failure to enrol on a programme of study within the prescribed enrolment period.
Students pursuing programmes delivered in partnership with other institutions shall be required to enrol with the University and the partner institution in accordance with the enrolment procedures published by the individual partner institution and the University.
By completing the enrolment process, student shall confirm that they will by the regulations of the relevant institution(s), and in the case of programmes delivered with partners, confirming that they will abide by the regulations of both institutions, reflecting their status as enrolled at both/all institutions.
A Taught Masters’ programme is a collection of discrete educational components of the academic level and content deemed to be appropriate for the award in a particular subject area.
Candidates may qualify for an award upon successful completion of an approved modular programme of study provided either on a full-time or on a part-time basis. The academic content of a part-time programme shall be equivalent to that of a full-time programme and the assessment must include a piece or pieces of directed independent learning.
|Postgraduate Certificate||60 credits|
|Postgraduate Diploma||120 credits|
|Standard Masters||180 credits (120 credits taught modules at Part One and 60 credits of directed independent learning at Part Two).|
|Extended Masters||240 credits (120 credits taught modules in Year One and 60 credits of taught/placement modules and 60 credits of directed independent learning in Year Two).|
|Flexible Masters||180 credits (120 credits of taught modules and 60 credits of directed independent learning either to be conducted concurrently with the taught delivery, in a structured and discrete way or embedded within the taught components).|
Faculties/Schools must specify the structure and delivery model of a programme at the point of programme approval.
All Postgraduate Taught Masters Programmes must offer 60 credits of directed independent learning or an approved alternative authorised by the Regulations, Quality and Standards Committee.
The following categories of students will be recognised:
• Full-time candidates.
• Part-time candidates (normally pursuing 60 credit points or less per year).
• External candidates (students who are allowed exceptionally to enrol to sit examinations only).
• Members of staff who have registered as students.
• Associate students (students who are not pursuing a named programme but are studying individual modules) or Exchange students pursuing Level 7 modules.
7. Modules within a Programme
A module is a distinct educational component of a programme. Each programme shall consist of taught modules which may be single modules of not less than 5 Swansea University credit points and not normally more than 30 credit points. For Masters Programmes there shall also be additional 60-credits of directed independent learning/approved alternative.
In addition, each module:
• Is assigned a unique reference code.
• Is assigned to a level of study which reflects the academic standard of a module and its learning outcomes.
• Shall also be assigned European Credit Transfer System Credits (5 ECTS credits is roughly equivalent to 10 Swansea University credits).
• May have pre-requisites and/or co-requisites.
Modules may be grouped into the following categories: lecture based; practical based; external practice based; directed independent learning; dissertation based; computer based; fieldwork based; placement based, work based or an appropriate combination of these categories (composite module).
All modules for any qualification offered under these regulations shall be equivalent to the Framework for Higher Education (FHEQ) Level 7.
For most degree programmes there shall be compulsory modules to be determined by the Faculty(ies)/School(s) concerned. Such modules should be identified by Faculties/Schools and listed in Faculty/School handbooks.
To supplement the compulsory modules, candidates may be expected to pursue optional modules from a prescribed list of options in the specialist subject area(s). Candidates should seek the guidance of the 'home' Faculty/School when choosing the optional modules.
Faculties/Schools might identify modules which are fundamental to a programme. Faculties/Schools can stipulate that such 'Core' modules must not only be pursued but also passed before a candidate can proceed to the next part of study or qualify for an award. Failures in core modules must be redeemed.
Substitute modules are those modules which are normally studied in place of modules which were previously failed (at first attempt only). Candidates may apply to their home Faculty/School to be permitted to pursue substitute module(s). The mark for a substitute module shall be capped regardless of the actual mark.
Candidates shall be permitted to transfer from one module to another provided that the transfer is approved by the relevant Faculty(ies)/School(s) within the following time-scale:
- Short intensive modules (2 weeks) before the end of the second day of teaching on the module concerned.
- Short modules (11 weeks) before the end of the 2nd week of teaching on the module concerned.
- Long modules (22 weeks) before the end of the 4th week of teaching on the module concerned.
Only in exceptional cases and with the approval of the Chair of the Faculty Education Committee will transfers outside those deadlines be approved.
Students will be expected to follow the procedures for transfers in force at the time and adopted by the Senate of the University.
Full-time and part-time postgraduate taught candidates may be permitted to change their mode of attendance prior to the start of their degree programme, provided that it does not contravene rules governing visas, sponsor/studentships. Full-time and part-time candidates may change their mode of attendance between 1 or 4 weeks of commencement of their programme with the approval of the Executive Dean or nominee. Candidates wishing to change their mode of study beyond these deadlines would normally be advised to suspend studies and return the following session. However, with the express support of the Executive Dean, a case may be submitted to Education Services who will consider the case administratively on behalf of the Regulations, Quality and Standards Committee.
Postgraduate taught candidates will not normally be permitted to transfer programmes unless the transfer is within a programme offering different specialisation options. In exceptional circumstances, postgraduate taught candidates may be allowed to transfer programmes of study if, after consultation with the Executive Dean or nominee (normally the home Faculty/School), it is felt that the transfer is in the best interest of the candidate. Normally such transfers shall take place within the first 2 weeks of the start date of the programme. In the approval process, due consideration shall be given to the admission requirements and the financial implications of the transfer including the views/conditions of sponsors (including studentships).
All transfers of programmes, which occur after the second week of the first year of study, should be approved administratively on behalf of the Regulations, Quality and Standards Committee, in consultation with the Faculty/School. Normally, applications for programme transfers received after the first 4 weeks of the programme shall not be authorised. Such requests may be referred to the Chair of the Regulations, Quality and Standards Committee.
A programme transfer shall not be approved unless the candidate can complete the programme or Part One of the programme (for standard masters programmes) within the expected period. If by the time the transfer is approved a module will have been taught and assessed, or if the student will have missed a substantial part of the teaching of a module that shall render it impossible to complete the assessment, the candidate should be advised to suspend studies.
The period of candidature shall not automatically be extended for students who transfer programmes and need to suspend studies. However, such candidates may apply for an extension to their candidature in accordance with the University's regulations.
Candidates transferring programmes will only be permitted the normal number of attempts at completing the Level (i.e. 2 attempts per module) and it therefore follows that:
• Candidates who transfer after failing a module on their original programme shall only have one further attempt at substitute modules on the new programme.
• Where a candidate has already attempted a module once, the Faculty/School should:
• Consider whether credit transfer is possible for those modules which have been passed.
• Inform the candidate that they have only one further attempt at substitute modules and ensure that such attempts are not capped.
Candidates who have already exhausted both attempts will not be permitted to transfer programmes.
If a candidate has not attempted modules on their original programme they will be permitted 2 attempts on their new programme.
Candidates who are required to withdraw or exit a programme with a Postgraduate Diploma or Certificate may not be permitted to complete an online Transfer of Programme request. However, such candidates shall not be precluded from applying through the normal admission route to be admitted to another programme.
The appropriate online Transfer of Programme request must be completed, signed by the candidate, authorised by the appropriate member(s) of the academic staff and submitted to Education Services. This procedure applies to all programme transfers, including transfers internal to a Faculty/School. The online form is available on the University intranet.
In the case of International students sponsored by the University, a transfer of programme is conditional upon holding a valid Student Route (previously Tier 4) visa. At the point of transfer, an assessment will be made as to whether the transfer meets current Student Route (previously Tier 4) legislation before it is approved. The assessment will include reference to the level of the new programme, the student’s current period of leave, the current time limits governing Student Route (previously Tier 4) study, whether the new programme meets a student’s “genuine career aspirations” and any other requirements specified by the UK Visa and Immigration Service (UKVI). Where the new programme cannot be completed within the period of existing Student Route (previously Tier 4) leave, the student will be required to leave the UK to make an application for further leave to complete the programme. For programmes requiring ATAS Clearance, International students must obtain clearance and provide a copy of the ATAS certificate to the University, before a transfer can be approved.
Candidates who are pursuing a postgraduate taught award may be permitted, with the approval of the Executive Dean (or nominee), to transfer to a higher award in the same subject area, according to the table below:
|Qualification gained:||Transfer permitted to:|
|Postgraduate Certificate||Postgraduate Diploma or
Postgraduate Taught Masters
|Postgraduate Diploma||Postgraduate Taught Masters|
In the case of a candidate who has completed a programme, such transfers shall be actioned prior to the award being bestowed.15.2
Each programme has a maximum period of candidature. The maximum period is designed to enable students, whose studies have been interrupted for whatever reason, to complete their degree. Students must aim to complete their programme by the deadlines given for the programme. A candidature shall lapse (and examination be thereby precluded) if the programme is not completed within the University time limits.
Time limits may be extended, but in exceptional cases only, and in accordance with the following criteria:
- Normally, extensions will be granted only on compassionate grounds, or in cases of illness, serious domestic difficulties or exceptional professional commitments which can be demonstrated to have adversely affected the candidate. A full and reasoned case, supported by a work plan, appropriate medical or other independent evidence must be submitted by the Faculty/School, to Education Services, for consideration. Such cases will be processed administratively on behalf of the Regulations, Quality and Standards Committee.
- In the case of part-time candidates who cite exceptional professional commitments, the request must be accompanied by written confirmation and description by the employer of the exceptional workload borne by the candidate and a statement that the commitments had been unforeseen.
- In cases which arise as a result of illness:
- Satisfactory medical evidence, including a medical certificate, must be supplied. (The extent and nature of the illness as described in the certificate are invaluable in assessing the case.)
- A clear statement must be supplied, showing that the Faculty/School concerned has evaluated the situation in which the candidate finds themselves as a result of the illness and that it considers the requested extension to be appropriate. Such a statement will, wherever possible, follow direct contact between candidate and Faculty/School.
Applications for extensions must be routed via the candidate's supervisor or in the case of postgraduate certificates and Diploma’s the programme Director, to Education Services, where the case will be considered administratively on behalf of the Regulations, Quality and Standards Committee.
Extensions of candidature for students who are resubmitting their piece of directed independent learning will not be permitted.
Extension requests submitted by Research degree students solely on the grounds of concurrent enrolment will not be granted for staff members who are concurrently enrolled on the PGCtHE, owing to the contractual requirement of the PGCtHE as a condition of employment.
The level of study shall be at level 7 of the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ).
A Faculty/School handbook shall be issued to each candidate at or before the commencement of studies. The minimum details required for the handbook shall be those specified in the document template for the Faculty/School Handbook issued by Education Services.
Suspension of studies shall be considered in accordance with the University’s Suspension of Studies regulations.
Candidates shall be expected to engage with all scheduled learning sessions associated with each module which they have elected to pursue.
Engagement shall be monitored in accordance with the University’s Engagement Monitoring Policy for Taught Students.
Progress shall be monitored through regular discussion sessions with tutors and through Examination Boards.
Candidates whose work is interrupted by illness for more than seven days are required to inform the Faculty/School in writing and to submit a medical certificate.
A candidate who has been absent from an examination is required to send, without delay to the Faculty/School, a written explanation within five working days of the examination taking place. In the case of illness, they shall also be required to submit a medical certificate.
All candidates shall note that it is their responsibility to make their Faculty/School aware as soon as possible of any extenuating circumstances which could have an effect on their performance either during the academic year or during examinations, in accordance with the University’s Policy on Extenuating Circumstances Affecting Assessment. Academic appeals based on extenuating circumstances which could have been brought to the attention of the appropriate Faculty/School prior to the meeting of examination boards shall not be considered.
A candidate requiring special provision for their coursework or examination shall submit a written application, in the first instance, to the Executive Dean (or nominee) who shall consult the Head of Student Services (or the appropriate University officer) as soon as possible. The application shall be supported by documentary evidence. The Executive Dean or nominee, in consultation with the Head of Student Services (or appropriate University officer) is permitted to disregard requests for special provision if not supported by appropriate documentary evidence.
If the Executive Dean or nominee is informed that a candidate should receive special provision, they shall forward the application, supported by copies of documentary evidence, to the Head of Student Services (or the appropriate University officer) as soon as possible. In the case of candidates with dyslexia, a report which is dated within three years of the date of entry of the candidate to the programme of study must be received from a qualified psychologist experienced in working with dyslexic adults or from someone with a qualification from a professional training course involving assessing adults with dyslexia.
Any candidate requiring special provision or special consideration for their coursework or examination due to unforeseen circumstances shall inform the Executive Dean or nominee as soon as possible. It shall be presumed that, unless the Executive Dean received details of extenuating circumstances and a request for an extension, that the student was not unduly affected in the preparation of the assessment in question.
If appropriate, suitable arrangements shall be made by the Executive Dean or nominee in consultation with the candidate.
International students who need a visa to study in the University should be aware that their continued study at the University is dependent upon them meeting the conditions of their visa and the time-limits set by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). For more information please refer to https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration/study-visas.
Decisions taken by the University with regard to a candidate’s enrolment status, academic performance, progression and award shall be made in accordance with the University’s academic and financial regulations and shall not be informed by visa restrictions and time-limits set by the UKVI. However, continued study is conditional upon meeting the University’s requirements and holding a valid visa.
Students who have any concerns or queries regarding their visa should contact International@CampusLife.
Faculty/Schools shall set deadlines for the submission of work. Candidates who fail to submit work by the deadline shall be awarded a mark of 0%. Candidates, who are prevented from meeting such deadlines due to extenuating circumstances, may apply to the Faculty/School for an extension. It shall be presumed that, unless the Faculty/School received details of extenuating circumstances and a request for an extension, that the student was not unduly affected in the preparation of the assessment in question.
All examinations shall be conducted under the jurisdiction of the University's Regulations and Procedures for the Operation of Examinations. The operation of Examining Board shall be conducted in accordance with the Assessment Regulations for Postgraduate Taught Awards.
External Examiners shall be nominated and appointed in accordance with the procedures detailed in the Swansea University Code of Practice for External Examiners.
Associate tutors/examiners must possess recent or current demonstrable professional standing in an area of practice closely relevant to the programme of study.
A full curriculum vitae will be provided to the University Education Committee for the approval of Associate Examiner status.
Candidates shall be assessed at the Institution at which they have pursued the programme of study.
Any candidate who is following a programme of study of the University may request, regardless of whether the main language of assessment of the programme in question is English or Welsh, to submit examination scripts or assessed work in either English or Welsh. Such requests shall be dealt with in accordance with the Guidelines on Assessment and Examination in Welsh or another Language Other than the Language of Tuition.
In cases where it may be considered appropriate for a thesis to be submitted in a language other than English/Welsh for academic reasons, permission may be given by the Faculty/School where a reasoned case has been submitted for approval, normally in advance of the candidate's registration for study. However, the Faculty/School shall not give approval to requests based upon the candidate's lack of ability to produce work for submission in either English or Welsh.
Requests for credit transfer shall be considered in accordance with the Policy and procedures for the recognition of Prior Learning at Swansea University. The University will only accept credits studied within the last 5 years. The maximum number of credits transferred should normally be no more than one third of the total number of credits, that is 20 credits for Postgraduate Certificates, 40 credits for Postgraduate Diploma’s and 60 credits for Postgraduate Taught Masters programmes, including the Extended Masters programmes. However, exceptions may be permitted, for example, due to Professional Body regulations.
Credit exemption cannot be applied for on the basis of previous academic failure. Applications shall not be considered from students who were awarded an exit qualification due to academic failure on that programme.
In exceptional circumstance and in accordance with the Policy and procedures for the recognition of Prior Learning at Swansea the University will consider applications from students who had previously pursued a Postgraduate Taught Master’s programme at the University and who chose to exit from the programme with a postgraduate/certificate diploma within the last five years.
Candidates who have qualified for their awards shall be admitted to their degrees in absentia, by decree of the Vice-Chancellor of Swansea University. Candidates shall be invited to an awards ceremony at a later date to celebrate their award.
Any allegation of academic misconduct shall be considered in accordance with Swansea University’s Academic Misconduct procedures.
Allegations concerning fitness to practise shall be considered in accordance with the Swansea University Fitness to Practise Regulations.
Requests from Faculties/Schools for Aegrotat Awards shall be considered in accordance with the University's procedures for the Award of Aegrotat Degrees.