Academic and Business Case (ABC) instruction

Instruction statement

This instruction sets out the process steps for submission and approval of the following types of proposal:

RMIT accredited program proposals

  • A new RMIT accredited program at Australian Qualifications Framework level 5 or above (to be offered anywhere)
  • A new double degree from existing awards
  • A new offering of an existing RMIT accredited program at Australian Qualifications Framework level 5 or above at an RMIT campus or approved partner outside Australia
  • Change of duration of an existing RMIT accredited program at Australian Qualifications Framework level 5 or above
  • Change to an existing RMIT accredited program at Australian Qualifications Framework level 5 or above for AQF compliance

VET proposals

  • New offering of nationally recognised VET qualification or accredited course in a discipline/industry area not previously delivered by RMIT
  • New offering of a nationally recognised VET qualification or accredited course where the new offering has significant strategic and/or resource implications
  • New offering of an existing nationally recognised VET qualification or accredited course at an approved RMIT partner or an enterprise outside Australia.

Exclusions

This instruction applies only to approvals of programs and program offerings listed above.

Instruction steps and actions

Overview

This process should be carried out in accordance with the relevant program approval calendar: see the Program and course life-cycle instructions and forms web page for the program approval calendar relevant to each type of program proposal.

The intention to develop ABC proposals should be registered well in advance on the Program Life-cycle Register (PLR): see the Program life-cycle register instruction.

RMIT accredited program proposals should be submitted using the Higher Education.

The process described in this ABC instruction has the following stages:

  • Academic and Business Case (ABC) Gateway 1: Business Case approval
  • ABC Gateway 2: Academic approval.[Note: For vocational education program proposals, once the business case has been approved, academic approval takes place by the process set out in the Vocational Education program approval instruction, steps 3 onwards.]
  • CRICOS registration (if relevant)
  • Opening the program offering on curriculum management systems

The Program Proposal Tracking List (PPTL), a Google form, is used to track proposals through the academic approval process so that units of the University involved in the ABC process are aware of them. To gain access to the PPTL, email a request to the ARG Course and Program Administration Service Account, cpa@rmit.edu.au.

ACADEMIC AND BUSINESS CASE (ABC) GATEWAY 1: BUSINESS CASE APPROVAL

[Note: for all program or program offerings to be offered at an RMIT partner outside Australia, the partner must first be approved by the Strategic Assessment Process established in the International partnerships and collaborations policy, before commencing the Academic and Business Case (ABC) Gateway 1: Business Case Approval process. Where, however, a new partner is in process of being approved, the first program proposals may be submitted for inclusion in the PLR concurrently with the partner approval process.]

Instruction (including key points)

Responsibility

1. Register the intention to develop the program or program offering. This should normally be done well in advance. For the process to be followed, see the Program Life-cycle Register instruction, which is available from the Program and Course Life-cycle Instructions and Forms web page.

[Note: Where a new program offering or discontinuation will have, or currently has, students on an international student visa studying in Australia, it is essential to consult the Assistant Director, International Marketing and Recruitment early in development of the proposal for market analysis and/or advice on the transition for enrolled students and offered applicants.]

College Pro Vice-Chancellor

2. For higher education programs, complete

  • Parts C and D of the HEPAT, and
  • Higher Education course forms for any new courses*

and submit these with the Part A of the HEPAT previously completed for this proposal to ARG Course and Program Administration (CPA) to be configured. Retain a copy of the submitted parts of the HEPAT for submission for Gateway 1 approval in steps 9 and following below.

[*Note: Colleges have the option of deferring submission of course forms until after Gateway 1 approval to proceed to development. Colleges may also request CPA to defer configuration of the program structure in SAMS until after Gateway 1 approval to proceed.]

College Academic Development/Academic Services Group (AD/SG) in consultation with the program team and School Learning and Teaching Committee

3. For vocational education programs, complete the VET notice of intent form, and submit this to ARG Course and Program Administration (CPA) to be configured.

Complete VET Pro forma 1: Adding a qualification to RMIT’s scope of registration.

Attach this, together with the training package qualification description for the new qualification, to part B of the HEPAT in the next step.

Program team in consultation with College VET team or AD/SG

4. Configure the program offering in SAMS, generate a program guide shell in the Program Guides System and refresh to that the program structure appears there (unless College has requested that this be deferred until after Gateway 1 decision); add the proposal to the program proposal tracking list (PPTL).

CPA

5. Undertake consultation with stakeholder units: see the consultation matrix in part B of the HEPAT. Where the consultation is by circulation of the proposal, include all parts of the HEPAT in the circulation, so stakeholders will understand all aspects of what is proposed.

AD/SG and College Planning and Resources Group in consultation with the program team and School Learning and Teaching Committee

6. Complete the Gateway 1 – Business Case questions in part B of the HEPAT. Submit sections A, B and C of the HEPAT to the Pro Vice-Chancellor (PVC) and College Executive

Dean/Head of School

7. Check that the proposal has been noted on the Program Life-cycle Register by the Vice-Chancellor’s Executive (VCE). (The VCE Secretariat records on the PLR the date of the VCE meeting at which the proposal was included in a PLR extract noted by VCE.)

If the proposal does not have a date on the PLR for the VCE meeting at which it was noted, contact the VCE secretariat to find out whether it has been noted and the date not yet recorded. If it has not yet been registered on the PLR, complete part A of the HEPAT for the PVC’s approval to register on the PLR. Register the proposal on the PLR. Hold the Gateway 1 – Feasibility approval until it is confirmed that VCE have noted a PLR extract including this proposal. Once this has occurred, submit parts A and B of the HEPAT

PVC’s Office

8. Approve the business case, or request further analysis, or decline to endorse.

PVC and College Executive

9. Where the PVC approves the business case or declines to endorse it, record the PVC’s decision and date of the decision on the Program Life-cycle Register (PLR).

PVC’s Office

10. Before each meeting of the Vice-Chancellor’s Executive (VCE), download the PLR and include an extract of proposals with PVC business case decisions dated since the last meeting. This will ensure that VCE are kept informed of proposed new program offerings that have been approved for academic development.

VCE Secretariat


ACADEMIC AND BUSINESS CASE (ABC) GATEWAY 2: ACADEMIC APPROVAL

[Note: This stage of the process applies only to RMIT accredited programs at AQF level 5 or above. The academic approval process for vocational education program proposals, once the business case has been approved, is set out in steps 3 onwards of the Vocational education program approval instruction.]

Instruction (including key points)

Responsibility

[Note: if Colleges have deferred submission of part C of the HEPAT and course forms until after Gateway 1 approval to proceed, they must submit these urgently immediately after Gateway 1 approval.]

1. Draft

  • remaining program guide sections in the Program Guide System
  • course guides in the Course Guides System for any new/amended courses (alternatively, if program team are unfamiliar with the Course Guides System, course guides may be drafted in Word for later entry in the Course Guides System by the College ADG), and
  • selection methodology.



Program team drafts and AD/SG reviews

2. Submit program guide, course guides and selection methodology to the College Academic Development Committee (ADC).

Documentation required for this submission comprises a College ADC cover sheet, program guide draft, course guide drafts for any new courses, selection methodology template; also a copy of the Gateway 1 Feasibility template and (if there is one) the Gateway 2 submission for reference.

The ADC may endorse the proposal, or require changes and resubmission, or decline to endorse.

Record the outcome on the PPTL.

Program team with support from AD/SG





College Secretariat

3. Submit proposal to the College Board (except where the College Board has delegated this authority to the ADC).

Documentation required for this submission comprises a College Board cover sheet, program guide draft, course guide drafts for any new courses, and selection methodology template.

The College Board may endorse the proposal, or require changes and resubmission, or decline to endorse.

Record the outcome on the PPTL.

College Secretariat

4. Submit proposal to Education Committee (see Documentation required by academic committee for RMIT accredited coursework program proposals.

The committee may endorse the proposal, or require changes and resubmission, or decline to endorse.

Record the outcome on the PPTL.

College Secretariat




Academic Secretariat

5. Submit proposal to Academic Board (see Documentation required by academic committee for RMIT accredited coursework program proposals).

The Board may endorse the proposal, or require changes and resubmission, or decline to endorse.

Change program guide to approved status and record the outcome on the PPTL.

Academic Secretariat


CRICOS code application

[Note: this section applies only to proposals for program offerings in Australia that declared an intention in the HEPAT to recruit international onshore students into the program. For other proposals, go straight to step 9.]

Instruction (including key points)

Responsibility

6. Once the proposal has been approved at Gateway 1 and Gateway 2, submit the most recent version of the business case documentation and academic proposal documentation with all endorsements to Global Quality Regulation and Compliance

College secretariat

7. Review the proposal and complete online CRICOS code application. Record submission of the application on the PPTL.

Manager, International Compliance

8. When the CRICOS application is approved, update the PPTL to reflect this.

Manager, International Compliance


Opening the program offering on curriculum management systems

9. Update the SAMS program configuration with the program code and activate the program in SAMS.

CPA

10. Publish the program guide on the Program Guide System and update the PPTL to reflect this.

CPA

[Next: Supporting documents and information]