The Academic Planning and Quality Assurance Unit (APQA) reports to the Director of the Institutional Planning Department. Governance of Academic Planning and Quality Assurance matters is the responsibility of the Senate Academic Planning and Development Committee (APDC), and the Senate Teaching and Learning Committee (T&LC).

The Unit facilitates internal and external processes (e.g. course and programme accreditation, departmental reviews) with a view to assuring stakeholders that standards and criteria that define higher education provision have been met by UCT; and identifying where thresholds are exceeded.

Our work includes quality enhancement, whereby the institution engages in a process of self-evaluation and peer review, with a view to lead to consciousness about strengths and areas for development and improvement.

We also develop and support activities that promote a culture of quality. In the main, this takes place via the planning for and development of resources to ensure the quality of teaching and learning at UCT, and the identification and sharing of best practices.

The Unit is responsible for:

  • The planning, approval and good governance of new streams and qualifications and changes to existing qualifications and streams.
  • The development and quality assurance of short courses.
  • Supporting UCT’s implementation of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF),
  • Management and review of the PQM to support the Size and Shape imperatives of the Institution.
  • Conducting environmental scans of the higher education environment to inform institutional planning.
  • Management of information related to quality reviews, including databases on commendations and areas for improvement.
  • Interpreting national higher education policy for institutional implementation.
  • Managing departmental reviews. The Unit also maintains the institutional document database on departmental reviews.
  • Supporting departments in the implementation of improvement plans related to departmental reviews.
  • Supporting programme and curriculum review.
  • Managing national quality reviews.
  • Supporting external reviews such as those conducted by professional bodies.
  • We are the secretariat for the Online Education Sub Committee, Senate Academic Planning and Development Committee, Distinguished Teachers Award Committee, and Adult Learning Sub-Committee.

The Unit is also represented on various institutional and external committees and projects related to quality assurance.

2024 Timelines for Planning of New Programmes and Changes to Existing Qualifications

These are the: 

▪ Internal and external stages of approval for applications for new qualifications and changes to existing qualifications to be introduced in 2027

▪ Internal stages of approval for new streams that will be introduced in 2026 (New streams in existing qualifications do not require external approval)

2024 timelines
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