Programme Approval

New Programmes | Changing Existing Programmes | Forms

Programme Design

All new programmes should be designed with reference to a number of University and external reference points including the University’s Learning and Teaching Strategy, Faculty strategy, QAA subject benchmarks and the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ).

If you are planning to develop a new programme, you are strongly advised to contact your LeTS faculty contact as early as possible. They will be able to advise on both the programme design and the approval process as well as putting you in touch with other professional service colleagues who can advise on areas such as the business case, marketing, library and IT resources.

If the proposed new programme involves another institution (e.g. joint award or articulation) or distance learning of some form, please consult the relevant additional guidance.

New Programme Approval

There are three key stages to the approval of any new programme.

1. Approval in principle: The Faculty approves the principle of developing a new programme. This is based on whether there is a sound business case for the programme and whether it fits with Faculty strategy.

2. Departmental approval: The department, usually the Learning and Teaching Committee (or equivalent) approves the programme in full.

3. University approval: The Faculty Learning and Teaching Committee (or designated group) look in detail at the proposed programme. In order to this, you will need to submit a number of documents:

  • programme approval form
  • programme regulations and specifications
  • details of any new modules

Once a programme has been approved by the faculty, this will be reported to the University's Learning and Teaching Committee and then Senate.  In a small number of cases, where a new programme is particularly unusual, approval may need to be sought from the Quality and Scrutiny Committee, before being reported to LTC and Senate.


Approval in principle should be completed by the following deadlines to ensure that the programme can be inlcuded in the prospectus and added to UCAS (for UG). 

  • UG programmes - end of October in the academic year before the programme is due to start
  • PGT programmes - end of April in the academic year before the programme is due to start

Changing Existing Programmes

Before proceeding with any changes to programmes please refer to the Guidance and Practical Approaches to Programme Development and Modification document (in the right hand side menu) which has been produced in response to the Competition and Markets Authority Guidance and provides information to departments on when to inform, consult or seek consent from students/applicants in respect of changes to programmes.

Documentation required to make changes to previously approved programmes is as follows:

Significant Amendments to programmes

  • Significant Amendment Form
  • revised programme specification 
  • revised programme regulations 
  • module approval forms for any new modules associated with the programme
  • revised Unistats information (UG only)

Adding an Intermediate Award to an Existing Programme

  • a covering letter from the Head of Department outlining the rationale for the proposal 
  • revised programme specification 
  • revised programme regulations

Change of Title / Programme Discontinuation / Programme Suspension

  • the appropriate form from below


The following documents are in Word format. When you click on the link you require, the document opens as a Word file and can be saved in the normal way.

New Programmes Form

Proposal form for new programmes
(Please note that this form needs to be completed on a Windows computer.  A usable version for Mac users is in development)
Significant Amendment Form Proposal form for making significant changes to an existing programme
Form T Change of Title Form
SUSP Form Suspension of a Programme Form
DISC form Discontinuation of a Programme Form
New Module Form Information required for approval of a new or significantly amended unit to be uploaded onto UMS
New Module Form with hints New module approval form with handy hints for completion

Programme specifications

Template Programme specification template
Guidance Programme specification guidance