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Policy and process

This page provides information about the framework of policy for the course designation process. In particular it includes links through to guidance about the policy and designation process published by Government. 

Latest government guidance

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) issued updated guidance on 28 August 2014. Before applying for course designation all providers should read this guidance and ensure they meet the application criteria. 

The guidance sets out detailed information on:

  • the specific-course designation system
  • the criteria for granting designation
  • the assessment and decision-making process
  • the conditions of specific-course designation
  • how student number controls and sanctions will be applied.

This guidance updates and replaces previous documents.

Providers must ensure they meet all the course designation application criteria set out in this guidance before they apply. Providers receiving specific-course designation will be required to sign an agreement with the Government to adhere to the criteria and conditions published in the guidance.

Read the government guidance

HND and HNC courses

The Government has also announced that it will not accept specific-course designation applications for any new HND or HNC courses in the September 2014 application window. BIS notified providers of its decision by e-mail on 17 July 2014 (see below).

Please direct any queries about this to BIS: designation.enquiries@bis.gsi.gov.uk.

BIS Announcement: Specific designation applications for HND and HNC courses - 2015-16 academic year

Download the Specific designation applications for HND and HNC courses - 2015-16 academic year as PDF (149 KB)

Alternative providers seeking to apply for specific-course designation should be clear about which route they should use to apply – see How to apply

Page last updated 1 September 2014

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