Assessment Criteria

Universities are required to show how the learning outcomes are delivered and achieved by students upon graduation. Applicants will need to provide evidence that their programmes meet the general criteria, as well as those specified for the research period of practice and the stream-specific criteria.

Further information can be found in the Advanced Accreditation Handbook which should be used as the main source of reference.

General criteria

Programmes will be judged against general criteria to ensure a high standard of learning and teaching is met. Evidence is required to show how the degree programmes meet the following:

Academic excellence

Knowledge and understanding of the subject must be based on current scholarship and research, and have appropriate assessment strategies.

Research-active environment

Projects must be conducted in active research laboratories or similar professional environments appropriate to the research.

Infrastructure supporting the claim for excellence

This includes library and ICT support, experience and expertise of the teaching team, and the teaching environment and facilities.

Other student outcomes

This covers understanding of physics, chemistry and maths appropriate to biology, and an understanding of experimental design and analysis.

The period of practice

Inclusion of a substantial period of research experience outside the normal learning environment in a professional working structure is essential to advanced accreditation. This should be considered normal practice for advanced accredited degree programmes. The period of practice will:

  • Allow students to apply their learned knowledge to their own supervised research in an active research environment
  • Draw upon theoretical knowledge and skills acquired during their degree
  • Normally be equivalent to 80 credits; typically lasting 6 - 12 months
  • Involve appropriate assessment, including a written report
  • Include significant contact from the HEI

Stream-specific criteria

Additional to the general criteria, the stream-specific criteria have been developed to reflect the requirements of graduate-level job roles relevant to the area of study. There subject-specific criteria are learning outcomes which students should be able to demonstrate upon successful completion of the degree programme. The streams are:

  • Ecological and Environmental Sciences
  • Molecular Aspect of Biology
  • Whole Organism Biology