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Master of Architecture

The Board, at its meeting of 11 May 2018, decided that the University of Westminster’s Master of Architecture (two years, full-time; three years, part-time) qualification should continue to be prescribed for the period 30 November 2018 to 30 November 2022 under section 4(1)(a) of the Architects Act 1997 for the purposes of entry onto the United Kingdom Register of Architects.

Prescription of the qualification is subject to the standard conditions set out in Section 9.0 of the Board’s procedures, namely:

  1. The University of Westminster’s Master of Architecture (two years, full-time; three years, part-time) qualification should be prescribed for the period 30 November 2018 to 30 November 2022;
  2. Prescription of the qualification shall be by reference to the programme specification, submitted with the application of 30 November 2017, for the University of Westminster’s Master of Architecture (two years, full-time; three years, part-time) qualification. No change may be made to the title of any course or qualification or substantial change to the content so defined within that programme specification (allowing for a normal course development) without first obtaining the written permission of the Board;
  3. Annually by 1 April each year, commencing on 1 April 2019, the institution is required to provide the Board with information of the nature set out in Appendix 2 of its procedures to enable the Board to see that i. all its criteria and the relevant requirements set out in Article 46 (or Article 47) of the Mutual Recognition of Professional Qualifications Directive [2005/36/EC] are being attained by students who have been awarded the qualification prescribed; ii adequate systems are in place to ensure that all the Board’s criteria will be met by students/candidates for the period of prescription; iii. that the institution’s resources remain as set out in its application and are adequate; and iv. all of the factors referred to at paragraphs 6.6 and 6.7 of the procedures continue to be demonstrated; and
  4. The institution will ensure that appropriate procedures will be maintained so that all students undertaking a prescribed qualification are fully informed of the extent of the application of that qualification to entitlement to registration as an architect in circumstances in which the student/candidate lacks a required antecedent qualification e.g. Part 2 without Part 1.

In addition to the standard conditions of prescription, the Board decided that the following additional conditions of prescription would be applicable to the qualifications under section 8.6 of the Board’s procedures:

  • The University must provide satisfactory clarification and evidence, as part of its next annual monitoring submission, as to what oversight its External Examiners have in relation to the 40 credits that students who avail of an exchange semester undertake in another institution and how the External Examiners ensure that these students have met the Part 1 or Part 2 ARB Criteria upon successful completion of their qualification.
  • If the HEFCE Annual Provider Review Report and the resulting action plan have any impact on the prescribed qualifications, the University is asked to provide an update supported by evidence of any relevant actions that have been taken and the progress that has been made in relation to them as part of its next annual monitoring submission.

The Board was confident that:

  1. all students who had been awarded the qualification since the prescription of the qualification was last renewed had met all the Criteria;
  2. the institution had adequate systems in place to ensure that students awarded the qualification met all the Criteria; and
  3. the institution should be able to maintain its ability to ensure that all students awarded the qualification meet all the Criteria.

The Board noted the due diligence checks that the University undertakes on prospective exchange partners and the exercise to ensure that the modules taken by students on exchange match the modules taken by those in Westminster. However, the Board agreed that the addition of a special condition to satisfactorily clarify what oversight the University’s External Examiners have in relation to the 40 credits taken in the exchange partner, supported by evidence, would ensure the Board’s confidence in the University’s quality assurance procedures and reassure the Board that all students participating in the exchange will have met ARB’s Criteria at the appropriate level upon successful completion of their qualification/s.

The Board also noted that the HEFCE Annual Provider Review report action plan is confidential, however, to ensure that the University is responding in an appropriate way to any concerns that may impact the prescribed qualifications (if any) it agreed a special condition, supported by any relevant evidence, to update the Board in the University’s next annual monitoring submission would be appropriate.

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