Meeting the challenge of positioning undergraduate units of study at the appropriate level

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Research and Development in Higher Education: Quality Conversations Vol. 25

July, 2002, 794 pages
Published by
Tony Herrington
ISBN
0 908557 54 X
Abstract 

Universities frequently make decisions about categorising the 'level' of each of their undergraduate units of study. However, little research to date has been conducted into how such unit levels are determined in the Australian context, why they are used, and what they actually mean for university teaching as well as for student unit selection and progression. This paper reports on an investigation of these issues in a faculty situation and in a wider Australian university context via a national survey of current practice. Results suggest, that while levels of units are a commonly used means of constructing Australian university programs to guide and control the progression of students, explicit definitions of what these levels imply are not clearly stated nor clearly based on educational theory. Suggestions are developed in this paper to begin to address these challenges using the case study context of a faculty situation in which curriculum development requires a more structured approach to determine unit levels.

Key Words: Levels, curriculum design, undergraduate units of study.

Meeting the challenge of positioning undergraduate units of study at the appropriate level

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Watson, G., Morgan, C., McKenzie, A., Roberts, D. & Cochrane, K.