Nottingham Trent University
Version - Jan 2010
Course Development – Business Planning Process
GUIDANCE FOR COMPLETING THE
REPORTING PROPOSED CHANGES TO COURSES:
VERSION FOR VALIDATED CENTRES ONLY
This document acts as a guide to take you through the process for making changes to existing
course in NTU Validated Centres. The processes described in this document include both the
business and academic stages which need to be completed prior to the approval of a change to
an existing Courses:


Business Planning Process – requires completion of the Reporting Proposed Changes
to Courses form (VS) (and if appropriate the Business Case Template (VS));
Academic Approval process – academic approval/validation or VSSC consideration
(this process remains unchanged)
It is important that these are seen as two distinct stages in the overall process. However, it is
recognised that behind each stage there will be ongoing dialogue and related activity.
It is recognised that a request for a change can come from a variety of sources, for example,
the Course team, academic portfolio review within the Centre, NTU Verifier recommendations,
employers, Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies (PSRBs), Marketing etc. This
process relates to NTU awards in Validated Centres only (including provision in
Further Education Colleges – see CADQ (Nick Titmus) for separate guidance for the
sign off of new provision in FECs) and is based on the internal NTU process for making
changes to courses.
The first step in the business planning (sign off) stage for changes to course is the completion
of the Reporting Proposed Changes to Course form.
The Reporting Proposed Changes to Courses form (‘change form’)
 The Centre (with input from CPO and link school as appropriate) will complete the change form for
all changes to existing Courses - the process for each individual change will seek to be proportionate
and will depend on the nature of the change.
 The completed Reporting Proposed Changes to Course form (VS) contains details of the change
and reasons for the proposed change. It is also used to identify whether there are any potential
business implications arising from the proposal. It is predominantly this aspect of the information
provided on the form that is relevant to the initial business planning considerations by the NTU. The
academic details will, however, be relevant to the subsequent academic approval processes and
provide valuable context.
Outlined below is a summary of the key actions and steps which need to be undertaken to
authorise continuing development of the proposed change through the business planning
process. Guidance notes for completing the Business Case Template (VS) and the
Reporting Proposed Changes to Courses form (VS) are available on the CADQ website.
The stages in the making changes to course process are:
°
Stage 1 – Reporting Proposed Changes to Course form (VS)
°
Stage 2 – The Business Case1
°
Stage 3 – Academic Approval
Additional information and guidance:
 You are referred to ASQH Sections 10, 3 and 4 where guidance is provided for drafting the academic
approval documentation. Of particular relevance to changes to existing Courses, please see section
10 for Collaborative Provision and Section 4, Appendix 4.1: “Making changes to Coursess” – Appendix
4.1 contains further clarification relating to the type of changes (Major/Modification/Minor
Modification).
 A simplified flow diagram of the making changes process for Validated Centres can be found below.
1
If a change does not include identified business implications (finance, marketing or resource) the process of sign off will reflect
this and a Business Case may not be needed.
Course Development – Business Planning Process
REPORTING PROPOSED CHANGES TO COURSE FORM
(‘CHANGE FORM’)
VERSION FOR VALIDATED CENTRES ONLY
The need to make a change to an
existing course identified by the
Centre
Centre informs CPO that they wish
to make a change to an existing
course
CPO provides Centre with change form and supporting
guidance.
Centre (with support from CPO and link NTU school if
appropriate) completes the change form
Business implications
identified
Business Case
Template (VS)
needed
Centre, CPO and link
school complete BCT
(VS)
See guidance for
completion of BCT (VS)
CPO receives and considers
the completed change form
No business implications
identified
CPO and link NTU school sign off change form (and
BCT (VS) if appropriate)
CADQ Officer allocated to the academic approval and
confirms academic approval documentation
requirements and timescales with Centre
Academic approval
(validation event / VSSC)
If at any point in the process the sign off is unsuccessful, CPO and the link NTU school will provide feedback – this may include recommendations
for amendments and re-submission.
Course Development - Business Planning Process
Making Changes to Existing Course and Sign-off stages (Validation Service
only)
(including supporting information on academic approval)
BUSINESS PLANNING PROCESS
Key Stages:
1: Proposal for Change to an Existing Course (VS only) - initial course and NTU process
Once the Course Team/Centre have identified and agreed the need to make a change to
an existing VS Course:

The Course Team/Centre notify to CPO that they are intending to make a
change to an existing (validated) Courses(s);

Preliminary discussions take place between the Course Team, CPO and CADQ
to agree the nature of the change and identify any potential business
implications;

CPO ensures that the Course Team/Centre has the Reporting Proposed
Changes to Course form (VS) and guidance to allow business sign off to
progress. CPO provides feedback to Course Team if proposal does not
progress beyond this point;

Section 1-5 of the Reporting Proposed Changes to Course form (VS) is then
completed by Centre (with input from CPO and NTU link school if appropriate);

On receipt of the completed Reporting Proposed Changes to Course form (VS)
(sections 1-5), CPO confirms the nature of the change (and therefore the
required actions) and gives agreement/sign off in principle (this is not the final
business planning sign off). CPO provides feedback to Centre if proposal does
not progress - if additional clarification is required the form may be re-worked
and reconsidered again;

The outcome of the initial considerations and nature of the change should be
logged on the Reporting Proposed Changes to Course form (VS) by CPO.
2: The Business Case
Once the Course level stages have been completed and the outcome has been noted by
CPO, one of two courses of action need to be followed (depending of the nature of the
change and whether any business implications have been identified – see Appendix A
below for further guidance on the types of changes):
(i). Major changes2 or where initial considerations by the NTU link school and
CPO have identified potential business implications associated with the
proposed change to an existing course:
2
Major Changes as defined in the ASQH

The Course Team/Centre, with input from CPO and link NTU school complete
the Business Case Template (VS);

The completed Business Case Template (VS) and completed Reporting
Proposed Changes to Course (VS) forms are reviewed by CPO and the link
school and considered for business planning sign off;

The outcome of the business planning process is logged on the Reporting
Proposed Changes to Course form (VS) and BCT(VS) by CPO;

If the business planning sign off is successful, a CADQ Officer is allocated to
the proposal and the academic approval route is agreed (either panel event or
consideration by the NTU Validation Service Sub Committee (VSSC).
OR
(ii). Modifications/Minor modifications3 where no business implications have
been identified:

CPO and NTU link school review the completed Reporting Proposed Changes
to Course (VS) form and reconfirm that there are no business implications;

The outcome of the business planning process is logged on the Reporting
Proposed Changes to Course form (VS) by CPO;

A CADQ Officer is allocated to the proposal and the academic approval route is
agreed (either panel event or consideration by the NTU Validation Service Sub
Committee (VSSC)4).
If at any point in this process a proposal may be referred back to the Centre for
additional clarification or further documentation/information. CPO will provide feedback
as required.
3: Academic Approval
At whatever stage the business planning and Business Case considerations have been
completed and signed off successfully, the academic approval process will then apply.
The academic approval process is detailed in Section 10 (collaborative provision) and
Section 4 (Appendix 4.1) of the ASQH. The process to be followed is determined by the
nature of the change.
For a Major Change the academic approval will involve either consideration by VSSC or
an academic approval panel. For a Modification or Minor Modification it is likely that
most proposals will be considered at VSSC (where there are business implications or a
large number of smaller changes it might be appropriate to seek approval via an
academic approval event).
Documentation requirements for academic approval remain unchanged. The
Reporting Proposed Changes to Course form (VS) should only be used to supplement the
academic approval documentation. Further guidance will be available from your CADQ
Officer.
3
4
Modifications and Minor Modifications as defined in the ASQH
In most cases, Modifications and Minor Modifications will be considered by VSSC.
Nottingham Trent University
Course Development – Business Planning Process
REPORTING PROPOSED CHANGES TO COURSE FORM:
VERSION FOR VALIDATED CENTRES ONLY
This form is to be used for business planning sign off and as such should contain relevant
information linked to business considerations within the Centre, NTU School and/or NTU
College and provide outline information on the proposed change. Once the business
planning sign off has been completed, academic approval documentation will be required
as per the NTU ASQH.
Where possible, sections 1-4 should be completed by the Course Team/Centre. Sections
5-8 will be completed within NTU.
1.
Award and Course title(s):
(please add additional rows if required)
Enter the full award and Course titles here of all the Course included in the proposed change.
This form should only be used for changes to existing VS Courses.
Guidelines for completing the form
Please see related guidance on the functions of this form and how to complete it (Guidance:
Reporting proposed changes to Course – Validated Centres). The form should be completed by
the relevant Course Leader in the Centre and then considered by NTU (School budget
holder/CPO). Academic Approval follows this process.
2a. Brief description of the proposed change:
Provide a brief description of the proposed change, for example, that the Centre wishes to
change the title of the course or that the Centre wishes to change the assessment in four
modules and the learning outcomes in two.
2b. Reason(s) for proposed change:
Provide a brief statement that explains why the changes are being proposed.
2c. Describe any potential business implications:
(If there are none please indicate this here – business implications include resources
(physical and human), marketing and financial implications)
The Course Team/Centre (with support from CPO) is asked to identify any potential business
implications. For example, a new module may require a new member of staff, new library
resources or teaching facilities. These items should be identified here.
3. Description of all changes to modules included in the proposed change:
Provide a brief outline here of the changes proposed to modules (rather than the course).
(If there are none please indicate this here.)
3a. Changes at module level – overview:
Please complete the following (add additional rows as required).
Module code and title:
Include the full module title (and
module code if known).
Level:
Include the
level of the
module.
E.g. 2
Credit
points:
Status:
Add the
number of
NTU credits
e.g. 30
State either
that this
module is in
approval or
is new
Core/Option:
(Approved/
New)
Indicate if this is
a core or
optional module
on the course
3b. Changes at module level – precise details of changes:
Please complete following (add additional rows as required).
Module code
and title:
Include the
full module
title (and
module code if
known).
Applies to all
Courses in
section 1
(‘All’)/or list
Courses title
Indicate if the
change to this
module impacts
on all courses
listed in section
1 or name the
courses.
Precise details of changes:
Provide precise, succinct details of the proposed changes to
this module.
3c. Consultation Process
Please provide information about the consultation process undertaken (there should be evidence
of appropriate consultation with students, external examiners, peers and other stakeholders
including the NTU Verifier):
Provide a brief statement here about the consultation that has taken place prior to the
completion of this form with a range of key stakeholders including the NTU Verifier.
4. ACADEMIC YEAR
State the academic year that the proposed change will be implemented:
State the academic year in which the changes will be implemented.
5. DATE INITIAL PROPOSAL SIGNED OFF BY COURSE COMMITTEE AT THE CENTRE
Date:
Add the date here
Sign and print name:
Provide the name of the Chair of the Courses Committee
that considered this change form prior to submission to
NTU/CPO
(Chair of Courses Committee)
For completion by CPO only:
6.
DATE CHANGE FORM AND BUSINESS IMPLICATIONS SIGNED OFF BY NTU (IF
APPLICABLE):
Date:
Add the date here
Sign and print name:
Indicate here who (in NTU) signed off the BCT and change
forms to move forward to academic approval.
Note any business implications
identified:
CPO should note any business implications here – this may
need to be picked up during the academic approval process
or separately by CPO..
Note the outcome of NTU/CPO consideration of the BCT and
change form.
Note outcome of NTU
consideration:
7. RECORD OF CHANGE FORM AND BUSINESS CASE TEMPLATE SIGN OFF:
Date change form received by
NTU:
If Business Case Template
needed, date outline BCT
considered by NTU and note
outcome of consideration:
If Full Business Case Template
needed, date presented to NTU
and outcome:
Date:
Comments/decision:
Add
the
date here
Add
the
date here
Date received by CPO is recorded here with
any comments
Date received by CPO is recorded here with
any comments
Add
the
date here
Date received by CPO is recorded here with
any comments (or note that BCT not needed)
8. RECORD OF ACADEMIC APPROVAL
Method of academic approval
(panel event/sub-committee):
Date and outcome of academic
approval:
Date:
Comments/decision:
Add
the
date here
Add
the
date here
Note method of academic approval –
VSSC/validation event
Note the outcome of academic approval here
(full information will be available in the report)
Nature
of
change Major Change
proposed:
Revised documentation received:
Verifier
has
received
revised
documentation:
Modification
Yes
Yes
Minor
Modification
No
No
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Version - Jan 2010 Nottingham Trent University Course