Collaborative Partnerships

The QAA UK Quality Code Advice and Guidance section on Partnerships defines a Partnership as " An arrangement between two or more organisations to deliver aspects of teaching, learning, assessment and student support. It refers to collaborative arrangements involving students and/or awards which include those involving guaranteed progression and sharing of services. Partnership arrangements may apply to the delivery of whole courses of study or to elements of courses, individual modules, or self-contained components of study. Alternative sites and contexts for learning or assessment, or specialist support, resources or facilities for learning, may be provided, for example, by organisations offering work-based or placement learning opportunities, or employers supporting employees on higher education courses where the workplace is used as a learning environment. They may operate either within the UK or transnationally and include, for example, different modes of delivery such as online, validation arrangements, franchised courses, branch campuses, multiple awards, apprenticeships and provision by ‘embedded colleges’ of integrated foundation courses.”

Collaborative Partnerships are partnerships where the achievement of learning outcomes for the module or programme are dependent on the arrangements made between the organisations. The following partnerships are Collaborative Partnerships which the University has experience of engaging in:

  • validated institutions
  • partner colleges – franchised model, validated plus model, validated model
  • dual/joint awards
  • articulation arrangements
  • delivery partnerships:
    • course delivery support partner
    • standalone module delivery provider
    • course delivery provider
  • co-supervision of research degrees
  • joint research awards.

For a full description of the types of partnerships currently operated by the University and the approval and operational procedures for these, please see:

  • Annex O Approval and Quality Assurance Procedures for Collaborative Partnerships – Part 1 Development of New Partnerships and
  • Annex P Approval and Quality Assurance Procedures for Collaborative Partnerships – Part 2 Quality Assurance and Operational Management of Collaborative Partnerships

The University will consider collaborative partnerships proposed outside of those typologies currently operated, as appropriate.

Collaborative Provision Register

The Quality Assurance and Compliance Office keeps an up-to-date register of collaborative courses and partnerships operated by those partners.


For queries regarding the approval of new collaborative partnerships or the operation of existing partnerships, please contact Tina Hagger, Quality Assurance and Compliance Advisor.

For advice on International Partnerships, please contact Primrose Paskins Senior International Partnerships Officer.

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Last Updated: 11/05/2022