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Published byAidan Alexander Modified over 9 years ago
Access to HE Diploma
Access to HE Diploma – A bit of History Government White Paper 2003 made recommendations for QAA to review and develop the Access to HE recognition scheme. QAA Access to HE Development Project 2004 - a response to the recommendations set out in the White Paper. September 2008 launch of the Access to HE Diploma with, a national credit target, common title structure and Rules of Combination for achievement of the specific named Diplomas. From September 2009 the Access to HE Diploma with the incorporation of Grading.
Characteristics of the Access to HE Qualification A standard title: the Access to HE Diploma. Individual awards are named according to subject, such as Access to HE Diploma (Nursing) or Access to HE Diploma (Law). With named Diploma specific Rules of Combination to be met for achievement. Credit based: the standard number of credits required for the award of all Access to HE Diplomas is 60 credits (with 45 at level 3 and 15 at 2 or 3) Graded: a standard grading system has been introduced to ensure that all Access to HE Diplomas are graded, and that all Diplomas are graded in the same way.
The Access to HE grading model unit grading A grade is awarded for each level 3 unit successfully completed within the Rules of Combination (level 2 units will not be graded) No other grades are used. Grades cannot be 'converted' to percentages or other numerical marks Pass/Merit/Distinction model, where -Pass = achievement of the learning outcomes, as assessed by assessment criteria of the unit -Merit and Distinction = higher level of performance
The Access to HE grading model Units are only considered for grading once the unit learning outcomes and assessment criteria have been met. A standard set of grade descriptors is used to decide which grade should be given. There are seven grade descriptors, which can be used for all subjects. When the unit is validated, a selection of appropriate grade descriptors is confirmed. Student work is assessed against the selected grade descriptors and a standard process is used for establishing the grade for the unit.
The Access to HE grading model There are standard assessment regulations on matters such as resubmissions, referrals and confirmation of grades at final awards boards. Regulations also ensure that grade polishing is not permitted A profile of all grades achieved within the 60 credits and the Rules of Combination for the named Diploma is given on the transcript of achievement, which is issued at the same time as the Access to HE Diploma. There is no aggregate or single final qualification grade
The Grade Profile Learner who successfully achieves the Diploma will receive a Diploma certificate and a Grade profile The Grade Profile will have a maximum of 60 credits. With a minimum of 45 at level 3 graded at pass, merit or distinction The total number of grades available varies according to the structure of the course the student follows and, in particular, the number of level 3 units specified in their Access to HE Diploma. As Diplomas can be structured with different combinations of units of various sizes (that is, with different credit values), the number of units (and therefore of grades) varies.
How will the graded Diploma Support HE Admissions Tutors in their selection of Access to HE applicants? Differentiation between candidates Achievement of particular units at particular levels or grade: Offers can be framed around particular subject requirements. For example, all Chemistry units listed on an application form to be achieved at a merit or distinction for a Pharmacy degree programme. This will ensure that these units have been achieved at the required standard.
Framing offers from 09/10 Offers should not be made requiring more than 60 credits. Only 60 credits can be awarded on an Access to HE Diploma. Any additional credit is not recognised as part of an Access to HE Diploma Some Diplomas do not offer 60 credits at level 3 E.g. Nursing, where there are a number of mandatory units at level 2.
Framing Offers from 09/10 Making offers for 60 credits at distinction is likely to disadvantage learners, as this would assume that a learner could achieve a level 3 unit at distinction in their first assessments. Tutors are unlikely to be able to predict grades given the nature of Access courses and the short time tutors have to work with learners before writing references. A follow up reference would be useful here, as tutors would have a better idea of grade achievements as the year progresses.
Some variations… Students who started an Access to HE course before 2009, but who complete the course in 2010 (mostly part-time students), may present an Access to HE certificate or an ungraded Diploma. An ungraded Diploma awarded in these circumstances will nonetheless be accompanied by information about graded achievement in 2009-10. Students who completed an Access to HE course in 2009 may present ungraded Access to HE Diplomas. Students who completed an Access to HE course before 2009 may present Access to HE certificates.
Website Links QAA Access to HE Website for the latest guidance www.accesstohe.ac.uk OCNLR for updates and information on the Access to HE Diploma www.ocnlr.org.uk
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