University glossary

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Academic advisor

Member of ANU college of academic staff responsible for providing guidance to students concerning their programs and/or courses.

Academic area

A formally recognised element of the University’s academic structure such as an ANU college, school, centre, group, institute, or research school. Creation of an academic area is approved by the Vice-Chancellor or University Council.

Academic board

The Academic Board of the Australian National University is a Committee of Council under the University’s Academic Board Statute. Academic Board is tasked with ensuring the University maintains the highest standards in teaching, scholarship and research. It was formally re-established by Council in February 2012 and is a governance requirement under the threshold standards regulated by TEQSA.

Academic integrity

The principle that students’ work is genuine and original, and completed only with the assistance allowed according to the rules, policies, and guidelines of the University. In particular, the words, ideas, scholarship and intellectual property of others used in the work must be appropriately acknowledged. Work includes not only written material, but in addition any oral, numerical, audio, visual or other material submitted for assessment. Breaches of academic integrity include plagiarism, collusion, the fabrication of deliberate misrepresentation of data, and failure to adhere to the rules regarding examinations in such a way as to gain unfair academic advantage.

Academic organisation unit (AOU)

An academic are which the University uniquely identifies to the Commonwealth as providing one or more courses.

Academic plan

An academic plan is a distinct structured sequence of study and set of requirements for completing study for an award.

  • There are four types of plans: Course of Study; Honours, Vertical Double (undergraduate only), and Specialised (graduate only).
  • Difference academic plans typically lead to different awards and determine the nomenclature that appears on testamurs for those awards.
  • Students enrolled in a single degree program follow one plan at a time.
  • Students enrolled in a combined degree program follow two plans at a time.

Accreditation of a plan requires approval of the Academic Board.

Academic program

An academic program is a grouping of one or more academic plans around a particular theme, award, or set of admission requirements. For example:

  • Bachelor of Science program includes an academic plan leading to BSc (Hons) award.
  • Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science program includes an academic plan leading to BA and BSc award.
  • Every program has a default plan. Students admitted into a program are initially enrolled in the default plan and students may apply to move between plans.

Accreditation of a program requires the approval of the Academic Board.

Academic progress

Students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate coursework awards in ANU colleges are expected to maintain satisfactory results. This includes academic standards required for scholarship conditions.

Academic progress committee

The Committee is established under subrule 16(1) of the ANU Academic Progress Rules and oversees decision making in cases of unsatisfactory academic progress.

Academic requirement

A requirement placed on a course that determines whether enrolment may be permitted. It may consist of a pre-requisite, co-requisite, or incompatibility.

Academic standard

A level of student learning that is assessed through specified learning outcomes and about which there is consensus within the relevant disciplinary community.

Academic transcript

Academic year

The academic year refers to the ANU academic calendar. The academic year is divided into sessions usually of a fixed duration during which courses are conducted. Courses may be taken over one or more sessions. The academic year is defined by two six month periods. Higher degree research students are enrolled in semesters and research quarters which map to the coursework sessions.

Accelerated learning

Where a student takes greater than a standard load of 24 units (0.5 EFTSL in one semester (including related sessions) in order to complete their program in a shorter space of time than the standard duration.

Admission

Entry to an award program or non-award study at the University.

Advisor

For research students this is a member of the supervisory panel whose responsibilities include providing additional expertise on or related to the research topic, providing wider contact within and outside the University - advising, at the student's request, on any matters relating to the program, including difficulties in the relationship with other panel members.

Alignment

The way in which certain curriculum elements, learning outcomes, teaching and learning activities and assessment, are interdependent. Implementation of a successfully aligned curriculum ensures that students are taught the material they need to know to complete the tasks set for (summative) assessment. The assessment strategy is designed to provide the teacher with the evidence they need to make an informed judgment about how well students have achieved the stated learning outcome.

Annual plan

Initially due three months after commencement of a research program, then annually with the annual report, it is an articulation of research goals for the coming year.

Annual report

A report for research students of research completed in the past 12 months. Any impediments to completing on time should be noted in the annual report.

ANU award

A merit based financial award to assist the recipient to meet costs associated with a future course of action. For Award, see definition below.

ANU College

The primary academic organisation unit of the University established by Council and including:

  • ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences (CASS)
  • ANU College of Asia and the Pacific (CAP)
  • ANU College of Business and Economics (CBE)
  • ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science (CECS)
  • ANU College of Law (CoL)
  • ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment (CMBE)
  • ANU College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences (CMPS)

ANU College Dean

The Dean of an ANU college is responsible for leadership of the college’s education and research programs, and outreach activities.

ANU Council

The University is governed by a 15 member Council under the Australian National University Act 1991. The Council acts in all matters concerning the University in best promoting its interests.

Assessment

A process to determine a student’s achievement of expected learning outcomes that may include a range of written and oral methods and practice and demonstration, including tutorial participation, formal examinations, assignments, tests and essays. It can also be described as the strategies put in place to allow course convenors to gather evidence of student progress and academic achievement, and to judge how well students have achieved the learning outcomes for their course of study.

It is University policy that lecturers will discuss and explain assessment to students in classes.

Assessment criteria

Description against which assessment tasks are described to determine whether a student has demonstrated attainment of learning outcomes. Students are informed about the assessment criteria before they commence an assessment task.

Assessment hurdle

An assessment task that tests competency or skills or knowledge that is considered as fundamental to passing the course or, is required by a discipline specific or other accreditation authority.

Assessment Task

A task undertaken by students which requires them to demonstrate one or more of the learning outcomes of a course.

Associate Dean

A member of a College Dean’s office tasked with supporting or advancing work in a particular field, for example, Assoc Dean (Education), Assoc Dean (HDR), Assoc Dean (Students). This position may carry academic delegations depending on the college—see Delegated Authority below, and may also be referred to as Deputy Dean in some colleges.

Associate Dean (HDR)

The Associate Dean (HDR) is responsible for overseeing the education and training of HDR candidates in his/her ANU College.

Australian Higher Education Graduation Statement (AHEGS)

AHEGS is a Commonwealth required document in addition to the testamur. It provides information on a student’s higher education qualification; the institute at which the qualification was obtained; the Australian higher education system, and the Australian Qualifications Framework—see below.

Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)

AQF is the national policy for regulated qualifications in Australian education and training. It incorporates the qualifications from each education and training sector into a single comprehensive national qualifications framework.

Award

A qualification conferred by the University and certified by a testamur.

  • Award names and relevant specialisations appear on a graduate’s testamur.
  • Different plans may lead to different awards though some lead to the same award.

award (lower case)

Payment or benefit made on the basis of criteria established by ANU. An award may include prizes, scholarships. Bursaries, student grants, and ANU awards.

Award program

A structured sequent of courses, leading to an award. Also referred to as a degree program.

Bachelor honours degree (B (Hons)

A program undertaken as an honours program from its commencement; the details and orders are published in the handbook.

Benchmarking

The process of comparing academic standards in one course with the following academic standards applied:

  • In the same course at different times
  • In different courses in the same institution
  • Similar courses in other institutions.

Bursary

An award made to enable further study on the basis of equity for use towards accommodation.

A bursary is similar to a scholarship but the distinguishing feature is that it assists with accommodation expenses at either a hall of residence, college, or lodge. No special conditions are placed on the student other than maintaining enrolment and residence in the nominated accommodation.

Candidate

Student enrolled in a graduate research degree program.

Capstone

A course that provides an opportunity for students to demonstrate that they can integrate the knowledge and skills they have acquired throughout the major or program. The learning outcomes of the capstone will normally map into the learning outcomes for the major or program.

Career

Your academic career refers to the level of program you are participating in. At the ANU, this could be non-award, undergraduate, graduate or research.

Census date

The point at which a student’s enrolment in a course becomes effective and they become financially liable for the course. This is the date by which a student should finalise their enrolment for the session or semester. The census date for a course is the date by which a domestic student must:

  • Submit a completed Request for Commonwealth Support and HECS_HELP form, or a Request for FEE_HELP Assistance form.
  • Finalise the arrangements for payment of their student contribution amount if a Commonwealth supported student.
  • A census date for a course must be a minimum of 20% into the duration of a course, including periods of time for assessment.

The following census dates apply at ANU:

  • First Semester Census Date 31 March
  • Second Semester Census Date 31 August

For course census dates in non-standard sessions see Programs and Courses.

Chair of panel

The convener of the supervisory panel, with primary responsibility for the co-ordination of all aspects of a research student's program. May also be the primary supervisor. See more Chair of panel information.

Class number

A class number is the unique 4-digit code that identifies a class running in a particular semester. A course will have multiple class numbers, each one locating that course to a different semester or session. For instance, ANTH2026 has the class number 2023 to signify the first semester offering, but might have a different code to signify a second semester offering. Your class number will be listed in the Terms section of your Course Outline.

Co-requisite (course)

Courses that must be undertaken prior to, or alongside, the specified course, unless exempted by the Course Authority. Students must enrol in and continue enrolment in the co-requisite(s) before their enrolment in the specified course is regarded as effective.

Code of practice

Codes of Practice bind members of the University and are used to express or examine issues in more details than a standard policy or procedure.

Collaborative awards

Joint degrees, dual awards/Co-tutelle or collaborative awards are awards co-delivered by ANU and another institution.

College Student Office

The College Student Office is a single point, comprising professional staff who provide college students with academic advice, graduation eligibility, and approving all changes to enrolment requests.

Combined load

A program that leads to one award and testamur but that may be across areas. For example, the BA/BEng program may lead to one award or testamur. Programs that lead to two awards are defined under Double Degree below.

Commencing student

A student is a commencing student if they are enrolled in the program for the first time (at the higher education provider) between 1 January and 31 December of any given year.

Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN)

A Notice that contains information about a student’s enrolment and use of Commonwealth assistance. The Notice will be provided to students electronically.

Commonwealth Grants Scheme

The method through which funding is allocated to the University for students enrolled with a Commonwealth Supported Place.

Commonwealth Higher Education Student Support Number (CHESSN)

A unique identifier for each student that will remain with them throughout their university studies. The number allows access to Commonwealth assistance for higher education.

Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS)

TEQSA assesses application for inclusion in CRICOS and may approve that provider be registered on CRICOS.

Only CRICOS registered providers can provide courses of study to overseas students who have Australian student visas. In this instance the term ‘courses of study’ is defined as programs in ANU context. In addition, to become registered to deliver courses of study to overseas students an institution needs to have the courses it wishes to deliver to overseas students on its scope of CRICOS registration.

Commonwealth Support Student (CSS)

A student in receipt of a Commonweath supported place.

Commonwealth supported place (CSP)

A commonwealth supported place is a higher education place for which the Government makes a financial contribution. It is one of the ways in which the Government contributes to the cost of student education. Commonwealth supported places were previously referred to as HECS places.

Compulsory Courses

Courses required to be completed to satisfy some or all of the requirements of an award and cannot normally be replaced by alternative courses. Compulsory courses are offered every calendar year.

Concurrent enrolment

Enrolment by a student in a program concurrent with another program; only permitted with the approval of the relevant Delegated Authority.

Conditions of Award

The terms under which the award has been established and, if appropriate for the type of award, accepted. Formerly often referred to as Terms and Conditions of Award, or Terms and Conditions.

Conferring ceremony

The public ceremony where University awards are presented and granted or bestowed (conferred) upon persons who have completed all requirements for the respective University award. Also referred to as a graduation ceremony.

Constructive Alignment

A term coined by Professor John Biggs (2003) and used to describe the deliberate planning (by a teacher) of student learning outcomes, activities, and assessment in a coherent and related way.

Continuing load

Continuing load is attributed to:

  • Students who are starting a specialised program of studies after completing a common initial year (or years) of a general program at ANU.
  • Students who have completed an initial year of study at ANU and select a standard option of continuing their studies at a lower level, ie their study will lead to an award at a lower level than that which pertains to the program of studies undertaken in the first year.
  • Students who move from plan to plan within a program; students who are admitted to, or transfer from, a Bachelor Hons program having previously been enrolled at ANU in the related B pass course of study.
  • Students who are enrolled in a program at ANU which is upgraded in level or renamed.
  • Students who are resuming the same ANU program after absence.
  • Students continuing from the first component of a combined program to the second or later components.
  • Students resuming a combined program which normally leads to a single award after having been conceded an award for another program.
  • Students who have completed part of the requirements of a combined program at ANU and then change their enrolment to one of the components of the combined program.
  • Students who have completed part of the requirements of a single degree program at ANU and then change their enrolment to a related combined program which leads to an award or awards that subsume the award applicable to the single degree program.

Course

A subject of scholarly study taught:

  • In a connected series of lectures or demonstrations
  • By means of practical work including the production by students of essays or theses or case studies, or the attendance and participation by students in seminars or workshops

Each course requires a course outline.

A four character alphabetic subject area code and a four digit numeric catalogue number identify each course. The first digit denotes the state/year of the program in which the course is normally taken. Each course is normally assigned a unit value that is a measure of the proportion of the academic progress that a course represents within the total credit for the program

Course authority

Under ANU Delegations a course authority will:

  • Determine re-enrolment in a course after two failures for coursework within own college.
  • Approve offer of supplementary assessment for all courses within own college.
  • Approve form of supplementary assessment for all coursework courses within own college.
  • Approve enrolment of a student in a course, pending result of supplementary assessment in a course that is a pre-requisite for enrolment in that course, for all coursework students within own college.

Additionally, a course authority may waive pre-requisites and co-requisites, and determine whether or not a course is an equivalent course.

Course code

A course code is the 8-digit code that is used to identify an individual course at the University. This code will be the same regardless of the year or semester the course is scheduled. See course.

Course convenor

A course convenor is responsible for:

  • The administration of the course, including the finalisation of marks and the submission of marks and grades to the Examiners’ Committee.
  • Recommending to the Head of School nominees for appointment as sessional staff required for the teaching of the course.
  • Ensuring that the course outline and other course materials comply with University policy and college and school requirements.

Student issues relating to the Discipline Rules including possible breaches of academic integrity.

Course duration

The length of a course usually measured in weeks, which include the final assessment task for the course. This is used to calculate the census date for a course.

Course of study

A Commonwealth term that refers to what the University defines as a program.

Coursework

A group of courses constituting all or part of the requirement for an award.

Coursework program

An academic program consisting either entirely of coursework or of a combination of coursework and research—the research component being less than two-thirds of the entire program.

Credit

The granting of credit is an evaluation process that assesses the individual’s prior formal, non-formal, and informal learning to determine the extent to which the individual has achieved the required learning outcomes, competency outcomes, or standards for entry to, and/or partial or total completion of, a qualification.

Cross-institutional student

A student who undertakes a course (or courses) at one institute (the host provider) while formally enrolled for an award at another institution as part of a program of that institution (the home provider) with an arrangement for recognition of study by both institutions. Cross-institutional enrolments normally incur a debt or tuition fee charge at the institution where the course(s) are undertaken.

Cth (or Cwlth)

Included when making a reference to Commonwealth legislation.

Curriculum

This term covers a wide range of aspects of the student learning experience, including learning outcomes, scope and sequence of knowledge (syllabus), details of content, skills, learning experience, resources, pedagogy, assessment, evaluation and review, and reporting. A description of the formative experiences available to a student enrolled in a particular course of study, of the academic achievements expected of a student who successfully completes the course, and of the ways in which the student’s achievements will be reported. (cf. Syllabus.)

Deadlines (Academic)

Final dates for submission of a piece of assessment.

Deadlines (Administrative)

Final dates to apply or submit various forms/documents. Students submitting after a deadline will usually incur a late fee, submission refusal, academic or other penalty.

Deadlines (Fees)

Set final dates for payment of all fees (eg up front HECS-HELP, tuition fees etc). Students who fail to pay by the specified date(s) may have their enrolment cancelled. If permitted to re-register their enrolment by the Registrar they will be required to pay all outstanding fees plus a penalty fee determined by the University.

Deferment

The postponement of the commencement of a program of study usually for no more than one year.

Persons offered a place in an undergraduate award program may defer initial enrolment for one year. Such persons must re-apply for their deferred place in the following year and must not undertake study in higher education during the deferment. Any deferment must be applied for by the specified date.

Degree

An award conferred by the University and certified by a testamur, in one of the following categories:

  • Bachelor degree
  • Bachelor (Hons) degree
  • Masters degree
  • Doctoral degree.

Delegate

A person invested with the authority to carry out the functions, powers, and duties of, or to act on behalf of or represent others. [1] A person who occupies an official position at the University, that position having been assigned authorities or powers by the Vice-Chancellor by way of the University delegation system.

Delegated Authority

A person appointed by the College Dean to carry out functions, powers, and duties as defined in the Rules of the University.

Delegated Authority Coursework

A profile created for a person who has been appointed by the College Dean to exercise a subset of the Delegated Authority profile, specifically in relation to coursework matters.

Delegated Authority Coursework

A profile created for a person who has been appointed by the College Dean to exercise a subset of the Delegated Authority profile, specifically in relation to coursework matters.

Diagnostic Assessment

A type of formative assessment used early on in a course or program, to evaluate student’s abilities to identify their own approaches to learning, to assist students to develop the skills to manage their own learning, and to provide the teacher (and students) with information that will allow the identification of deficits in knowledge and understanding. Diagnostic assessment helps both teacher and student to establish a baseline for learning.

Diploma

A qualification that has learning outcomes that apply integrated technical and theoretical concepts in a broad range of contexts to undertake advanced skilled or paraprofessional work, and as a pathway to further learning.

Discipline

A field of related studies.

Domestic student

A student who is an Australian citizen, a New Zealand citizen or the holder of an Australian Permanent Resident visa.

Donor

A benefactor or one who bequeaths an award or gift, or their executor.

Double degree

A program that leads to more than one award, For example, the BA/BSc program leads to the separate awards of BA and BSc after four years of full-time study. Undertaken individually, and not as part of a double degree, a BA and BSc would each take three years full-time study.

DTF

Domestic Tuition Fee is the fee payable by Australian citizens or permanent residents enrolled in a course on a fee paying basis.

Dual Degree

Students complete the requirements for two degrees from two institutions, with efficiencies in course taking. Each institution is primarily responsible for its own degree.

eCAF

Electronic Commonwealth Assistance Form is completed online by all Commonwealth Supported Students, and students covered by FEE-HELP and SA HELP, who wish to defer their debt.

Educational Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) Act

ESOS is the legislative framework that regulates the responsibilities of education institutions towards overseas students on student visas, and includes the National Code.

Elective courses

Where students may choose a course which contributes to their degree requirements, such as in the following circumstances:

  • Electives in Majors/Minors (ie courses that are neither compulsory nor core).
  • Electives with the 96 units of in-college courses.
  • Electives that fall within ‘free’ electives in single programs that can be taken from any college.

Endowment fund for named award in perpetuity

Funds may be established within the ANU Endowment for Excellence in perpetuity.

Enrolment

The formal registration of program structure such as selected courses, program leave, and a student program (expressed as enrolment in a program, college or course). All new and continuing students must formally enrol by registering courses in ISIS. Enrolment instructions for new students are provided at the time of offer of admission.

Enrolment variation

Within prescribed Rules and deadlines student may, having completed formal enrolment procedures, vary their enrolment by adding or dropping courses

Equity award

Made on the basis of allowing fair and equal access to higher education. These awards are aimed at redressing factors of disadvantage that may affect access to higher education. (See Bursary and Scholarship notes.)

Equity awards may be granted to students who come from one or more of the following defined equity or personal disadvantaged groups:

  • Australian Indigenous descent
  • Low socio-economic circumstances
  • Disability or long-term medical condition
  • Women from non-traditional fields of education such as engineering
  • Long-term family difficulties.

Equivalent course

A course declared by the relevant Course Authority to have a sufficient similarity of content to another course, despite having a different title or different course code.

Equivalent full-time student load (EFTSL)

A measure of student load expressed as a proportion of the workload for a standard annual program, based on the accumulated course EFTSL for a program. For graduate research students a weight of one if full-time; half if part-time.

For coursework students (undergraduates and non-research graduates) EFTSL is determined on course enrolment in the periods 1 January to 3 June, and 1 July to 31 December. In these periods 0.375 EFTSL or greater is considered to be full-time enrolment, less than 0.375 EFTSL part-time. Note that for international students EFTSL is normally required to be 0.5 in each period.

Evaluation

In the Australian higher education context, the term evaluation is generally used to refer to the assessment of quality, of student satisfaction, and of the process of review of curriculum, content, and/or quality. (cf. Assessment.)

Exclusion

Refusal of re-enrolment in a program due to an unsatisfactory rate of progress.

Exemption

Some students may be exempt from undertaking a compulsory course for the program on the basis of previous completion of the course, or an equivalent course. However, a course of equivalent unit value must be substituted. An exempted course counts towards program requirements and satisfied pre-requisite requirements for other courses but the unit value of the exempted course does not count towards the units taken towards the program.

FEE-HELP

A loan scheme to help eligible non-Commonwealth supported students pay their domestic tuition fees (DTF). Australian citizens and holders of a permanent humanitarian visa are eligible for FEE-HELP assistance.

FEE-HELP balance

The amount of FEE-HELP that a student may access at a given point in time. The FEE-HELP balance is the FEE-HELP limit minus the amount that a student has used up to a certain point in time.

FEE-HELP limit

The maximum amount of tuition fees that a student can receive a FEE-HELP loan for over their lifetime. This limit is indexed each year.

Feedback on assessment (1)

Written or spoken comments provided by lecturers, tutors, or software, for students about formative or summative assessment tasks that give students guidance about to perform future tasks more successfully and/or explain marks and grades they have been given for tasks already completed. See also formative assessment, formative feedback and/or summative assessment.

Feedback on assessment (2)

The process of providing students with an evaluation of the level of learning they achieve with respect to the assessment criteria for each assessment task they undertake. It is desirable that feedback includes information on how students can improve their performance.

Flexible Endowment

Donor donated amount which is drawn down over a period of time.

Formative Assessment

Any learning activity that will assist the teacher to identify deficiencies in student learning to date; design future learning tasks to address the deficiencies, and provide students with feedback that will assist them to improve their performance in summative assessment activities.

Formative assessment may be marked but will not normally contribute substantially to the final mark for the course.

Formative Feedback

Formative feedback is any commentary on student work that is designed to assist students to improve current or future learning.

Full-time student

ANU students studying 18 or more units (0.375 EFTSL or greater) in half year (Jan – June or July – Dec) are considered to be full-time students. International students should note that they are normally required to be enrolled at 100% intensity which generally equates to 24 units in a half year.

Further Assessment

An oral, written, or practical piece of assessment required from a student in addition to normal assessment for a course, to ensure that the academic performance of the student in that course is adequately and fairly assessed.

Grade Distribution

An overview of the frequencies of given bands of grades (HD,D,C,P,N).

Grades

Letters that correspond to bands of marks, usually according to an institution-wide scale, eg where students with a numerical mark that corresponds to 80 – 100% of the total marks available for the course will be awarded a grade of High Distinction (HD). (cf. Mark.) For full information on grades used at the University refer to http://www.anu.edu.au/sas/results/index.php

Grading Scheme

Broad descriptors that describe the overall level of achievement expected for each grade in terms applicable to a wide range of assessment activities.

Graduand

A student who is deemed to have completed requirements for an award of the University but has not yet had the award conferred.

Graduate

A student who has had an award conferred. A person who holds a degree or diploma from a tertiary institution.

Graduate coursework

A Grad Cert, Grad Dip or Masters by program comprising less than two-thirds research.

Graduate research

A Masters program comprising a maximum of one-third coursework and minimum of two-thirds research such as MPhil or PhD program.

Graduate research convener

Has responsibility for the graduate research field. Previously known as graduate studies convener.

Graduation

The process of granting and conferring (presenting) awards of the University either at a formal ceremony or in absentia.

Guidelines

Guidelines are designed to ensure that staff (or students) follow best practice when implementing policies or carrying out their tasks.

Guidelines generally permit a range of actions to allow flexibility in delivery of the desired policy objective.

Handbook

The Australian National University Undergraduate Handbook published under Rule 6 in the Undergraduate Handbook Rules, and the Graduate Handbook published under Rule 6 of the Graduate Handbook Rules.

HECS-HELP

Higher Education Contribution Scheme—Higher Education Loan Program that includes up-front payment discounts and loans to assist eligible Commonwealth supported students pay their student contribution amounts.

HELP

Higher Education Loan Program which allows students to borrow from the Government to pay their tuition fees. See HECS-HELP, FEE-HELP, OS-HELP or SA-HELP.

HESA

Higher Education Support Act 2003.

Higher Education Contribution Scheme (HECS)

Students who did not pay tuition fees prior to 2005 were required to contribution towards the cost of their education under the HECS. HECS liability was derived by calculating the proportion of a full-time load a student was undertaking and was assessed at the Census Date in each semester.

Higher Education Loan Program

A loan program to assist eligible students pay student contribution amounts (HECS-HELP), tuition fees (FEE-HELP), and overseas study expenses (OS-HELP).

Higher education provider

Universities and higher education institutions listed in subdivision 16-B of HESA and providers as determined by the Minister under section 16-35 of HESA and supported by the definition in the Provider Category Standards in TEQSA.

Honorary Degree

A degree that may be awarded under Rule 3 of the Honorary Degree Rules.

ILP

Information Literacy Program offered through the University libraries

In Absentia

Literally ‘in absence’ and used when a student has their award conferred at a formal ceremony but does not attend.

Incompatible course

A course that may not be taken if another alternative course has been undertaken and passed, or is currently being undertaken. Incompatibilities between courses must be mutual, ie if Course A is incompatible with Course B then Course B must be incompatible with Course A.

Intensity of study

The distinction, in relation to a student’s program load, between full-time and part-time. (See also Full-time Student, and Part-time Student.) Sometimes referred to as full-time intensity.

International student

A student who is not an Australian or New Zealand citizen or the holder of permanent resident status, and is required to hold a visa to study in Australia and liable for international student fees (ISF) payable to the University either by the student or a sponsor.

ISF

International student fee - see also International Student (above).

ISIS - Interactive Student Information Services

ISIS is a web based system that allows students to access certain personal and academic information held on the University’s student system, including examination results, enrolment and graduation details.

Joint Degrees

Joint degrees are commonly known to have the following characteristics:

  • The study programs are jointly developed and recognised by several institutions
  • Students at participating institutions spend part of their studies at another institution
  • The periods of study and examinations which were completed at other institutions are automatically recognised in full at their home institution
  • The teaching staff of each participating institution works out the curriculum together, formulates regulations for admission and the examination conditions, and also teaches at the other institution
  • Upon completion of the study program students receive either national degrees from the individual institutions or a degree which is jointly conferred.

Late fee

A fine or penalty levied as a disincentive for late payment of fees under these Rules or late enrolment in, or withdrawal from, a course.

Learning management system

A software application which provides tools that assist with the administration and delivery of online education.

Learning outcome

The expression of the set of knowledge, skills, and the application of the knowledge and skills a person has acquired and is able to demonstrate as a result of learning. In higher education learning outcomes are described using verbs such as create, evaluate, compare, criticise etc. Course outlines contain a description of both the aims and learning outcomes of the course.

Leave of absence

A period of absence from studies at the University.

  • For coursework students such absence generally covers a 6 month period.
  • For HDR students a minimum leave of absence period applies of 1 week for full-time students, and 2 weeks for part-time students.

Program leave should be sought by students prior to the commencement of the academic year or session in which it will take effect. Students who enrol and withdraw from all courses before the relevant Census Date will be considered for Program Leave providing they complete and submit all parts of the Program Leave application form.

Leave is normally approved for no more than one year in the first instance.

Lecture

An education talk normally delivered as a component of a course.

Local student

See Domestic Student above.

Major

A set of related courses which are constructed for students to achieve specified learning outcomes and require the completed of 48 units.

Majors can be in a single discipline (eg mathematics), or multi-disciplinary (eg corporate sustainability). Majors exist independently of programs but may be referred to by the requirements of a specific plan. Majors are available only to undergraduate plans and listed on academic transcripts but not on testamurs.

Major Program Amendment

An amendment to a program that requires University Education Committee (UEC) and Academic Board approval such as; matters affecting internal or external compliance, involving internal or external partners, or substantive revision to program orders.

Mark

A number associated with a particular grade either:

  • Used to enable different grades awarded to different assessment items to be weighted and aggregated, or
  • A single overall mark resulting from the weighting and aggregation of marks awarded for individual assessment items.

Raw marks, which may be scaled, become final marks after approval by the delegated authority.

Matriculate

Enrol for the first time in a program at the University.

Merit

A measure of academic or other excellence.

Minor

A set of related courses which are structures for students to achieve specific learning outcomes. A minor requires the completed of 24 units. Minors can be in a single discipline (eg mathematics) or multi-disciplinary (eg corporate sustainability). Minors exist independently of programs but may be referred to by the requirements of a specific plan. Minors are available only to undergraduate plans and are listed on academic transcripts but not on testamurs.

Minor program amendment

An amendment to a program that requires approval at the college level only such as revisions to informal content and substitution of compulsory or core courses with the same number of compulsory or core courses.

Moderation

The process by which agreement is reached about the level of learning demonstrated by a student for a particular item of assessment prior to the student receiving their mark or grade accounting for any differences in academic judgment made by different assessors against the agreed standards. The moderation process could involve:

  • Ignoring the assessment of particular assessors
  • Changing the grade or mark awarded to an item assessment
  • Reassessing an item of assessment.

National Code

The National Code of Practice for Registration Authorities and Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2007 is a set of standards that govern the protection of overseas students and delivery of courses to those students by providers registered on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Course for Overseas Students (CRICOS). The National Code is established under the Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) Act 2000.

National priority

National Priority courses are those that attract a reduced Student Contribution Amount for domestic students in order to attract students to study a particular field. These priorities are set a Federal level.

Non-award study

A study that does not lead to the award of a degree, diploma, or certificate, but consists of a course or work requirement that may be at undergraduate or graduate coursework level. [Note: non-award study does not include studies undertaken on a non-award basis within the meaning of HES Act.]

Non-standard session

Non-standard sessions (summer, autumn, winter and spring) are equal quarterly divisions of the academic year from 1 January to 31 December. Courses scheduled in non-standard sessions do not adhere to the session dates, and can be run at any time within that quarter. This means that some courses may be very short, intensive courses and other will span over the entire quarter. Each course in a non-standard session has a different Census Date. It is important to check non-standard session course dates in Programs & Courses.

Online learning

Institutions around the world use the Sloan Consortium scheme to classify courses and program offerings as online. 

Type Proportion of course delivered online Typical features
Not online 0% No online technologies are used. Delivery is either by face-to-face teaching or via printed materials or a combination of both.
Web facilitated 1-29% Course uses technologies to support face-to-face teaching, or the provision of printed materials or both. Typically, the web is used to post the course outline, lecture recordings, notes and slides.
Blended 30-79% Course that blends online and face-to-face interaction. Technologies are used to provide resources, eg. recordings, course outlines etc. and to host staff-student and student-student interactions, eg. discussion forums, student presentations etc.
Online 80-100% A course that can be completed in its entirety without face-to-face contact.

 

Order

Legislative instruments that are referred to the Australian National University Act, and Handbook Rules. Program Orders are required for each academic plan of the University and are the conditions for a student to successfully complete their award.

OS-HELP

A loan available to eligible undergraduate domestic students who undertake some of their program overseas.

Overload

Where a student takes a greater than standard full-time load of 24 units (0.5 EFTSL) in a semester including related sessions.

Part-time student

ANU students studying for 17 or fewer units in a half year (January – June or July – December) are considered to be part-time students.

International students should note that they are normally required to be enrolled at 100% intensity which normally equates to 24 units in a half year.

Pathway programs

Pathways allow students to move through qualifications levels with full or partial recognition for the qualifications and/or learning outcomes they already have. In disestablishments contexts, pathway applies only to programs in which there is a conditional offer to a subsequent program, eg Associate Degree to Bachelor, or Grad Cert to Masters.

Period

A grouping of sessions.

  • Period 1 comprises summer session, semester 1, and autumn session
  • Period 2 comprises winter session, semester 2, and spring session

Permanent resident

The holder of an Australian permanent residency visa.

Permission code

An ANU Academic College will sometimes place restrictions on a course, as only a select group of students meet the criteria to enrol. If a student tries to enrol in this course they will receive an error message in ISIS that prevents them from progressing. A permission code is issued by your College or School and overrides this restriction. If you are facing this issue, contact your College to check if you are eligible for the course.

Policy

Policies state the major principles and provisions that provide the governance parameters (framework) or the philosophical approach to a particular issue. They are more flexible than legislation but can be used to add detail to legislative provisions or other legislation but can be used to add detail to legislative provisions or other regulatory requirements.

Policies specify the broad approach to a particular subject and are created under the overall direction of:

  • University Council: by either Council itself or under delegated authority by the Vice-Chancellor

Policies can also include Codes of Practice or Codes of Conduct.

The following principles apply in relation to all University policies and procedures:

  • Policies are mandatory. All members of the University community must understand their responsibilities and comply with University policies and procedures when carrying out their duties.
  • Policy and procedures must be applied fairly and consistently.

Postgraduate

A student enrolled in but not yet completed or graduated from a graduate certificate, graduate diploma, masters, or doctorate program.

Potential graduand

A student who can expect to complete program requirements at the end of the current semester/session on the successful completion of the courses for the semester/session.

Pre-2005 HECS student

A student who, prior to 1 January 2005, was enrolled in a HECS-liable place and has not completed or discontinued their program and who incurred a HECS debt for the program prior to 31 December 2004.

Pre-requisite (award)

A requirement to have completed studies in a field or discipline prior to gaining administration to a specified program.

Prerequisite (course)

Studies that must be completed satisfactorily before enrolment will be permitted in a specified course. These studies may comprise another course at the University or a course taken in previous tertiary or secondary studies eg Year 12.

Primary supervisor

The chief person giving special advice on the particular nature of the topic. May also be the Chair of the Panel.

Prize

An award in recognition of outstanding performance, academic achievement, or service that carries no condition for future commitment. A prize may be awarded as a result of an assessment, or submission of a thesis or a combination of academic assessment methods. Other special qualities in the student, eg leadership and contribution to University life, may also be specified. A prize may take the form of monetary reward and/or certificate, medal, book voucher, equipment, or subscription to a professional organisation, plaque, or other token.

Program Authority/Program Convenor

The person within an academic organisation unit (AOU) who has been delegated the authority for the management of a program and ensuring the academic requirements of the program are met.

Program transfer

Students may apply to transfer from one ANU program to another at the same level, eg undergraduate to undergraduate. Applications must be submitted using the online application form.

Request for Commonwealth support form

The electronic form that an eligible student must complete in order to receive a Commonwealth supported place and HECS-HELP.

Requisite

See academic requirement (above).

Research Degree

The degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), a professional doctorate by research, the degree of Master of Philosophy (MPhil), or another degree of Master by research. The program must consist of research, research training, and/or independent study not less than two-thirds of the total program requirements.

Research topic

The working title of the research being undertaken by a research student. Approved changes to a research topic are recorded by student record administrators.

Research Training Scheme (RTS)

The RTS provides block grants, on a calendar year basis, to eligible higher education providers to support research training for domestic students undertaking degrees by research.

Retention

Retention rates are identified as an indicator of performance in the TEQSA threshold standards, and in the DIISRTE Higher Education Performance framework which sets targets for completion,

The retention indicator looks at the rate at which students from a program or equity group are retained from the previous year. It is calculated as a percentage: R = r(current yr)/(N(prev yr) – C(prev yr)) where r(current yr) is the number of students from the previous year’s group who enrolled again in the current year. N(prev yr) is the number of students from the group who were enrolled in the previous year, and C(prev yr) is the number of students from the group who completed their course in the previous year. Calculations are based on March 31 readings for each year.

Calculations for retention often highlight transfers from one program to another. Although these are not strictly lost enrolments, they can still highlight issues with a program, and although attrition rates for programs do vary, a rate of 20% or higher would characterise the outcomes of the ten universities in Australia with the worst retention outcomes.

Rubric

A tool for describing and assessing levels of achievement against assessment criteria. Rubrics provide feedback to students by indicating areas of improvement against the most important aspects of the activity. They are most often presented as a matric that allows performance against each criterion to be compared.

SA-HELP

Student Amenities Higher Education Loan Program (SA-HELP) is a loan scheme that assists eligible students to pay for all or part of their student services and amenities fee.

SAS

Student Administrative Service (SAS) is located at the ANU Student Exchange, 121 Marcus Clarke Street, and at Melville Hall (12). SAS contains areas such as admissions, enrolments, fees, examinations, timetabling, and graduations. The SAS enquiries counter on the ground floor of the ANU Student Exchange is a good first point of contact for any administration questions. The SAS enquiries counter is also where student cards, tuition fee payments, and academic transcripts are processed.

Scaling

The practice of adjusting the marks of a group of students, eg a class cohort or tutorial group. Scales marks may be adjusted up or down, usually as the result of a statistical calculation. Scaling does not change the rank order of students and is legitimately used when, for example, the average mark allocated to a particular cohort of students is considerably higher or lower that the performance demonstrated by the same cohort in other assessment items for the course, or in other courses. However, scaling should always be used with caution and should not be used to disguise problems with teaching or to force marks to fit a bell curve.

Scholarship

An award made in recognition of merit, service, or for reasons of equity that carries a condition for further study or commitment.

A scholarship is awarded on the basis of academic merit and/or equity; originating location of student (eg regional Australia or overseas); special personal qualities or abilities, or so that suitably qualified candidates may enrol in a program of study at the University. The award may be paid directly to the student or paid to directly offset tuition, other fees, or living expenses. It may also include a component of travel and/or relocation. Further conditions may be set.

Semester

There are two semesters in each academic year—semester 1 and Semester 2—normally each of 13 weeks duration divided into two teaching periods, with a non-teaching period of two weeks between each of the two teaching periods.

Session

The session is the academic period of study. For most students this will be Semester 1 and Semester 2. It also includes, as the case required:

  • In relation to a person undertaking a coursework program—summer session, autumn session, winter session and spring session;
  • In relation to a person undertaking a research program—research quarter 1, research quarter 2, research quarter 3 and research quarter 4

Special assessment arrangements

Arrangements made for students with a temporary or chronic disability by the University’s Disability Services Centre. They may include additional reading or writing time, the provision of special equipment, separate accommodation, or the services of an amanuensis.

Special Examination

An examination a student is permitted to take by the delegated authority, where the student was eligible to take an examination in a course but unable to attend the examination.

Specialisation (undergraduate)

A University approved sequence of advanced courses that requires the completion of 24 units and which must be completed in conjunction with a specific Major or as a specified requirement within a degree

Sponsor

An organisation such as an employer or government agency that officially registers with ANU to pay the tuition fees directly to the University for one or more students.

Student contribution amount

The amount that a Commonwealth supported student pays for a course. The amount will vary depending on the discipline area (bands) to which the courses belong and when a student commenced.

Student grant

An award made to a current student in recognition of merit to assist with the undertaking of a program as a one-off payment.

A grant is selected on merit, including but not limited to academic merit, to assist a student to undertake a designation component of a program such as; conference attendance, equipment, international exchange, student placement, or travel to conduct research. A grant is a one-off payment and may take the form on monetary assistance or a reduction in a specific cost such as tuition fees.

Student Learning Entitlement (SLE)

Student Learning Entitlement allocated to a Commonwealth supported student.

Student life cycle

Covers all aspects of a student’s engagement with the University including; initial enquiry, application, admission, enrolment, graduation, and into the future as alumni.

Student load

The proportion of the standard full-time program taken by a student in a particular stage of a particular program calculated on the sum of the weight of all courses undertaken. (See also EFTSL.) The standard full-time annual student load for most programs in 48 units which is 1 EFTSL.

Student Services and Amenities Fee

The student services and amenities fee is a fee that universities and other approved higher education providers can charge for student services and amenities on a non-academic nature such as; sporting and recreational activities, employment and career advice, child care, financial advice, and food services.

Sub-thesis

A body of original written work normally taken towards a Masters by coursework program.

Subject/Discipline

A subject/discipline is a broad area of academic study eg Archaeology or Physics. Subject/disciplines are identified by a four letter Subject Code, eg ARCH of PHYS.

Summative assessment

Assessment where a student performance contributes to their final mark of grade in the course.

Supervisory panel

Members appointed by the Delegated Authority to advise and assist a research student with a research program. See more Supervisory panel information.

Supplementary assessment

Includes, but is not limited to, assessment by a formal examination, a practical examination, a take-home examination, or an essay.

Supplementary examination

Supplementary examinations are available to students who are subject to the provisions of the Examinations Rules under certain conditions. A course grade of PX in the grade column indicates a student is eligible to sit a supplementary examination.

Teaching break

Any period between the scheduled start and end of a course that is not allocated to teaching. For a semester course this would comprise the mid-semester break and the period between the end of teaching and the beginning of examinations.

Teaching period

The academic period of study. For most students this will be Semester 1 and Semester 2. It also includes, as the case requires:

  • In relation to a person undertaking a coursework program—summer session, autumn session, winter session and spring session.
  • In relation to a person undertaking a research program—research quarter 1, research quarter 2, research quarter 3 and research quarter 4

Term

See session.

Testamur

The official document certifying that a student has been admitted to an award and had the award conferred in person or in absentia. It may include details of award level (eg Honours) and specialisation. Other terms for this may include Diploma or Degree certificate.

Thesis

A significant body of original written work that:

  • Incorporates an account of research done during a program and its result
  • If the research is on more than one topic, demonstrates the relation between the topics
  • Is required to be provided by a student for the program

The exception is written work comprising answers to a written examination or tasks required to be performed for the assessment of performance in coursework.

Thesis proposal review

A progress milestone due 9-12 months after commencement for PhD students and 6-9 months after commencement for MPhil students.

Transcript of academic record

A Transcript of Academic Record is a certified statement detailing a student’s complete academic record at the University. It includes details of all programs/courses in which the student has had an effective enrolment and the marks/grades achieved in course. (Marks are only included for courses taken since 1994.) It also lists University prizes and graduation details where applicable. It is issued to students on request and the payment of a charge.

Transfer

See program transfer.

Transition award

A type of ANU award given to assist a student to either come to ANU or move to a career after completed a degree at ANU.

UAC

NSW and ACT University Admissions Centre. The majority of domestic coursework students, and some international students, apply through UAC for admission to the University.

Undergraduate

A student enrolled in and not yet completed or graduated from a Bachelor degree, diploma or associated degree program (pass, honours or graduate entry).

Unit

This is an indicator of the value of the course within the total program. Most courses are valued at 6 units. Units are used to track progress towards completing a plan. Full-time students normally undertake 24 units of courses each semester.

University ID (student number)

A seven digit number which uniquely identifies a student or staff member at the University.

Warning

This is an official notification by the University (via email or mail) that a coursework student (undergraduate or graduate) has infringed the Academic Progress Rules for the first time in a program.

WATTLE - Web Access to Teaching and Learning Environments

WATTLE is the University's online learning environment for coursework. This is where your lecturers will upload your lecture notes and course information. You will also be able to access learning modules published by ANU Student Services, see messages sent by your lecturers and access student resources.