Glossary of Terms
All of the definitions and summary information below should be read in conjunction with the full section relating to these areas within the main sections of the Assessment and Examinations web pages.
The regulations which govern all academic provision at the University.
This is the Accreditation of Prior Learning and is the process used to assess and formally recognise learning which has taken place in the past. The APL process enables applicants to present prior learning in order to claim credit and, therefore, exemption from part of a course of study.
An appeal is a request for reconsideration of a decision made by the University Assessment Board. An appeal enables you (where there are grounds) to request that a decision about an assessment outcome is reconsidered.
This is the means by which you are judged on and receive an outcome for a module you have studied. There are a number of ways you can be assessed, these include: examination, coursework, portfolio, presentation or viva.
This can be either full-time or part-time and related to the number of hours you study on a particular course. Most courses have a specific method of attendance associated with them. It is, however, possible to study on some full time courses as a part time student you would then take the course over a longer period than those taking the course full time.
These are the requirements you must fulfil in order to be admitted to a particular course. They may be a combination of previous qualifications, medical clearance, DBS, references or previous experience. The Admissions team for your particular course will have provided information on these as part of your application and acceptance process.
Condonement refers to when a failed module mark is overlooked by a University Assessment Board; the failed mark is retained but the credit is given. There are specific criteria which must be met. For further information please see Condonation.
This is the unit of value attributed to any particular module and is used in combination to build up to credit totals required for specific awards. Credit can also be transferred internationally through the schemes such as ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation Scheme).
All information held about by you by the University whether in electronic or paper format is held in compliance and in accordance with this Act. More information can be found on our main website.
The Disclosure and Barring Service. This came into force on 1 December 2012 following the merger of the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and the ISA (Individual Safeguarding Authority).
The primary role of the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) is to help employer or organisations make safer recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from working with vulnerable groups including children through its criminal record checking and barring functions. There are two levels of DBS check; enhanced and standard.
Deferral - Course
It is only possible to defer your course during the first two weeks from the start date. This then stops your engagement with the course for this academic year and returns you to being the status of an applicant for the next intake.
A document which can be requested on completion of your course providing information on your course, which allows your qualification and course content to be compared across international boundaries. View our Certificates and Transcripts page for information on the portability and content of diploma supplements.
This is where you join an existing cohort of students at higher level or year of study and using credit through APL to allow you to do this in place of modules you would normally have to study on the course itself. Any APL claim would have to be formally recognised and approved during the admissions process.
Please see Extenuating Circumstances.
Erasmus is the European Union's flagship educational exchange programme for Higher Education students, teachers and institutions. Read more if you are a current University of Cumbria student who is interested in undertaking an exchange.
This is a formal timed assessment. The main University exam periods are in January and May, with resit exams in August. See our Examination section.
Extenuating Circumstances (ECs) is a phrase which is used to describe serious and exceptional factors outside your control which adversely affected your performance during your study. These factors may have prevented you from attending examinations or other timed assessments or caused you to miss assessment submission dates. You can submit an EC claim to be considered by a panel with regard to your module(s).
Extension of Registration
A mechanism by which you would formally apply to extend the period of your registration. Contact Programme Administration (PAd) for further information.
External examiners are employed by the University to verify the standards of the University’s awards and to ensure that the assessment process is sound and is fairly and consistently operated in line with its Regulations. More information.
Fitness to Practise
This is a requirement related to registration and employment with a number of professional bodies, further information can be found here, or check our Student Code of Conduct and Adjudication Procedure.
Fitness to Study
This is a requirement related to registration and continuation of your course and further details can be found here: Fitness to Study Policies and Procedures.
Freedom of Information
Gives members of the public the right to request access to information, and places obligations on the University on how it must respond to requests for information. More information can be found here.
The General Teaching Council for England ceased to exist from 01 April 2012 and was replaced by the Teaching Agency and subsequently the National College for Teaching and Leadership. Please see the entry below for further information.
Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland all have their own General Teaching Councils which are still in operation.
Harvard Referencing System
The system used within the University of Cumbria, please see this page for more information.
Health and Care Professions Council
The regulator set up to protect the public and keep a central register of those qualified and able to practise as health professionals within specified health professions. Their website is www.hpc-uk.org.
This is the name of your online student record, please see our ICON webpage for further information about functionality and information provided by this.
To suspend your studies from your course for a period of time. Please see Changes to your Course for further information.
Level of Study
This relates to the level of study on the Burgess scale and is a standard academic measure and indicator of courses across the UK’s academic courses.
Malpractice is defined under the University’s regulations as any attempt by a student to gain an unfair advantage in assessment. Examples include cheating in examinations, colluding with other students in coursework, and plagiarism.
One of the units of study which make up your course, each module has specific amount of credit associated with it. Module credit is accumulated on successful completion of individual modules to be presented for eligibility for validated awards.
Module - Core Module
A module which you must take as part of your course.
Module - Compulsory Module
A module which you must take as part of your course.
Module - Qualificatory Module
A module which you are required to complete and pass as an integral part of your course. These modules often have a pass or fail grading and are usually on courses which lead to registration with a professional body.
Module - Elective/Optional Module
An elective/optional module is one where there will be a number of modules available and you are able to choose which of these or which combinations of these you wish to study on your course. Not all courses have elective/optional elements.
The module diet is the combination of compulsory and elective/optional modules which are available on your course and from which you will either confirm (if you have no choice and are registered on a prescribed course) or select from if you have elective/optional choices available on your course. The diet will display all the relevant modules in combinations as above totalling the total amount of credit you are required to take in the year of study for which you are registering.
Module Assessment Board (MAB)
These boards review the modules you have taken and the grades you have achieved and make recommendations about your progression to the University Assessment Board.
National College for Teaching and Leadership
This was formed on 01 April 2013 following the merger of the Teaching Agency (TA) and the National College for School Leadership. The National College for Teaching and Leadership is part of the Department for Education (DfE) and is responsible for initial teacher training (ITT) in England. In addition it has responsibility for:
• The award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)
• The issue of induction certificates
• Hearing induction appeals
• The regulation of the teaching profession
Further information on their role is available on their website.
NHS Grants Unit
The funding body for those registered on courses leading to professional health registration such as Radiography, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and Nursing.
Nursing and Midwifery Council – this is the professional registration body for those working and qualified within these professions within England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Islands. www.nmc-uk.org.
PAd - Programme Administration
The first point of contact on each campus or site for students for academic information regarding their course of study at the university. Find out more here.
Part-time deferred status
This is now known as Reassessment without Attendance status - please look under Reassessment
Personal and Academic Tutor
This is a one of the types of malpractice.
Students need to achieve a certain amount of credit before they are permitted by the University Assessment Board to continue on to the next level of study.
Qualified Teacher Status. Where you are fully registered with the National College for Teaching and Leadership and are suitably qualified, having met the necessary criteria, to be employed as a teacher in the UK. Please see National College for Teaching and Leadership as above for further information.
Reassessment is offered when students have failed a module. This gives the chance to resubmit in order to pass and achieve the credit. More information on reassessment.
Reassessment without Attendance status
Students may be classified as a Reassessment without Attendance status
student by the University Assessment Board if they have reassessment above the amount permitted in the academic regulations. Formal study is suspended for up to twelve months and students will be expected to undertake reassessment in the failed modules. Students will continue to have access to services, including library, IT and academic skills support. An Assessment Contract will be completed to agree requirements for attendance at taught sessions and tutorials and any actions the student is required to take.
The process by which the university collects your information at the start of the academic year and ensures that you are formally enrolled on your course of study. If you are receiving funding from SFE this is part of the procedure you need to compete before the University can notify SFE of your attendance in order to release you funding. You are required to register on your course each academic year. If you are registered on more than one course you will need to register on each course individually.
The normal time period within which you would start and complete your course.
SFE - Student Finance England
Government agency through which higher education students in England apply for funding.
Student Loans Company is a UK public sector organisation established to provide financial services, in terms of loans and grants, to over one million students annually, in colleges and universities across the four education systems of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. www.slc.co.uk
The Student Charter sets out our commitments to you, makes clear what we expect from you and will work in partnership to achieve.
Students who register on a course which will qualify them to teach need to complete this prior to commencement of their course. The Admissions team will have provided more information on this during your application.
This is a list of all modules that you have taken and the grades that you have achieved. You will receive a transcript of results with your degree certificate pack when you are awarded.
To change courses or modules that you have registered for.
TRN (also referred to as TTRN)
Teacher Reference Number, your registration number with the National College for Teaching and Leadership, previously known as the Teaching Agency (TA).
University Assessment Board (UAB)
This board reviews students’ progress on your course and determines whether they have met the requirements for progression to the next level of study and for completing students it determines the award outcome, including classification (if appropriate). The University has a two tier assessment process. At the first tier, module marks are presented at the Module Assessment Board (MAB) for consideration. At the second tier, the University Assessment Board (UAB) considers each individual student’s profile of marks.
The programme validation process is a key mechanism through which the University assures academic standards. The process has been designed to ensure the University meets the precepts set out in the QAA Code of Practice, Section 7.
A module may be waived at the University Assessment Board’s discretion, and is normally only in exceptional circumstances. It is when credit is discounted from a student’s profile of marks so that they can be awarded. For further information, please see section F14 of the academic regulations.
To permanently leave the course you are registered for by completing a form