Glossary of Terms for Policies in the Student and Teaching & Course Management chapters of the Policy Library
absent without leave (AWOL): A student who is not enrolled in any subjects for a period of twelve months, and who has not had any status changes to subjects on their study plan (eg. change of result or recording of a late result) for a period of twelve months and who has not been granted leave of absence, will be declared ‘absent without leave’.
Academic Board: the Board is a committee of the Council and the principal academic body of the University.
academic record: an official statement, issued by authority of the Registrar, of a student’s subject results obtained at the University and showing any credit granted for prior study.
academic status: a status which indicates a coursework student’s academic progress in relation to the minimum academic standards considered necessary for satisfactory progress.
academic year: the period beginning on the first day of the first study period of a calendar year and ending on the last day of the last study period of a calendar year.
adjudicator: an additional assessor appointed to examine academic work where consensus has not been reached between the examiners. The adjudicator is frequently external to the University.
admitted: a student is admitted into a course from the time that they accept an offer until the time that the course is completed or until they are withdrawn from the course.
advanced standing: the recognition granted towards meeting the requirements of an award of the University, either on the basis of prior formal study or recognised prior learning.
general advanced standing: advanced standing granted to the value of a specified number of credit points for previous study or recognised prior learning for which there is no precise equivalent at this University.
exempt advanced standing: advanced standing granted in the form of exemption from the requirements of a particular subject for previous study or recognised prior learning which is or similar content and standard as required for a passing grade in that subject.
designated advanced standing: is the same as exempt advanced standing except that the result/s obtained for the completed study are recorded and included in calculations such as the Course Weighted Average.
admission: the process by which an applicant receives a formal offer of a place in a course from an authorised officer of the University and where the applicant formally accepts that offer.
anti-requisite: where there is significant overlap in content for two or more subjects, they may be defined as ‘anti-requisites’ for each other. Students will not be able to enrol in, or gain credit for, any subject that is an anti-requisite for one of their existing subjects.
assessment: includes all forms of assignments and examinations set as part of a program of study. Assessment exercises may be in the form of essays, project reports, laboratory reports, practical work, field trip reports, artistic or creative performances, teaching practice, placements, tutorials, tests or examinations etc.
assignment: a piece of academic work to be completed by a student and submitted for assessment.
assumed knowledge: indicates the minimum level of knowledge for students who are considering enrolling in a subject. Students who do not have the recommended level of assumed knowledge are not prevented from enrolling but they may be placed at a considerable disadvantage. Students who have not achieved the recommended level of assumed knowledge are strongly advised to undertake additional study or other appropriate preparation. Lack of the recommended assumed knowledge will not be taken into consideration when determining a student's grade or any other subject requirements.
‘at risk’: an academic status which indicates that a coursework student’s academic progress is below the minimum academic standards considered necessary for satisfactory progress.
- in relation to a course, describes whether a course is undertaken on an internal basis, ie completed primarily through face-to-face instruction, or external basis, ie completed primarily through flexible delivery (distance education).
- in relation to a subject, the following definitions apply:
- block mode: subjects offered via block mode require attendance at classes conducted via block teaching sessions and may be held on or off campus. For example, classes may be held from 9.00am - 5.00pm Saturday and Sunday for three consecutive weekends, or may be held three nights per week for, say, four weeks
- external mode: subjects offered via external mode are offered via flexible delivery and require no on-campus attendance for classes. Flexible delivery may incorporate the delivery of teaching material wholly or in part via the Internet, print material or CD Rom.
- internal mode: subjects offered via internal mode require regular attendance at classes over most weeks of a study period and are usually held on campus. Internal mode subjects offered during Study Period 1 (Semester 1) or Study Period 2 (Semester 2) are generally of 13 weeks duration
- limited attendance mode: subjects offered via limited attendance mode are offered via flexible delivery and require some on-campus attendance for classes. Flexible delivery may incorporate the delivery of teaching material wholly or in part via the Internet, print material or CD Rom. Practicum subjects are sometimes also recorded as limited attendance mode subjects.
- placement: subjects offered via placement mode require attendance at an external organisation for most of the duration of the subject for work experience/practicum/ clinical placement under the professional supervision of that organisation. There is usually no on-campus attendance.
award: a degree, diploma or certificate contained in the list of approved Awards of James Cook University.
- in relation to a course, a person enrolled for an award of the University who is pursuing a course of study in accordance with the requirements which apply for the award.
- in relation to an examination, a person who, whether or not that person has lodged an examination entry for the examination, has entered an examination room or the precincts thereof for the purpose of sitting for the examination.
census date: the date on which a student’s enrolment in a subject is taken to be finalised.
certificate: an award of the University at Certificate, Graduate Certificate or Postgraduate Certificate level.
certified copy: a photocopy of an original document which has been certified by a Justice of the Peace, Commissioner for Declarations, Police Officer or staff member of a tertiary institution, as a true copy of the original document sighted by the certifier. The certification must be original; photocopies or facsimiles of certified copies are not acceptable.
Chancellor: the person who presides at meetings of the University Council, and at graduation ceremonies.
commencing student: a person who has been admitted and enrolled for the first time at the University for a course and whose enrolment for that course has neither lapsed nor been cancelled.
Commonwealth assisted student: a student who is a Commonwealth supported student or who is in receipt of a HELP loan or a Commonwealth Learning Scholarship.
Commonwealth Higher Education Student Support number (CHESSN): a unique identifier for each student who accesses Commonwealth assistance for higher education.
Commonwealth supported place: a higher education place for which the Commonwealth makes a contribution towards the cost of the student’s education.
Commonwealth supported student: a student who occupies a Commonwealth supported place.
Compassionate and compelling circumstances: circumstances beyond a student’s control which have had, or would have, an impact on a student’s course progress or well-being. These circumstances may include, but are not limited to:
serious illness or injury, where a medical certificate or psychologist’s report states that the student was/will be unable to attend classes;
bereavement of close family members such as parents or grandparents (where possible a death certificate should be provided);
a traumatic experience which has impacted the student, and which is supported by police or psychologists’ reports;
unavailabilty of subjects required for the student to progress in their course;
inability to begin studying on the course commencement date due to delay in receiving a student visa; and
major political upheaval or natural disaster in the student’s home country.
continuing student: a person who has been admitted to the University and has been enrolled for a course, whose enrolment for that course has neither lapsed nor been cancelled, and is not a commencing student.
corequisites: two or more subjects that must be undertaken in the same Study Period.
core subject: a subject which is mandatory in order to complete the prescribed requirements of a course.
Council: the governing body of the University.
course: an approved Higher Education Award of the University, consisting of a combination of subjects the successful completion of which, together with any credit transfers in accordance with the relevant requirements, will fulfil the prescribed requirements for that particular award.
credit: also known as advanced standing - see definition above.
credit points: a measure of workload; three credit point subjects represent the normal value of a subject at the University although multiples of three credit point subjects are possible. A three credit point subject represents 25% of a full-time student’s normal workload during a teaching period. Each subject is assigned credit points by the appropriate faculty.
cross-institutional enrolment: an enrolment where a student admitted for an Award course at a tertiary education institution is granted approval to enrol in subjects at another tertiary education institution for credit towards the Award at the home insitution.
deferral: the approved postponement of commencement of study in a course for a specified period of time.
degree: an award of the University at Bachelor, Master or Doctoral level.
DEEWR: the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.
DIAC: the Department of Immigration and Citizenship.
diploma: an award of the University at Diploma, Advanced Diploma, Graduate Diploma or Postgraduate Diploma level.
DIISRTE: the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education
discipline: an area of study capable of being identified and of being systematically developed eg Geography.
dissertation: a substantive description of the research undertaken for the purpose of obtaining a coursework higher degree (research component less than two-thirds of the degree requirements) together with any associated material that is also subject to examination.
domestic student or applicant: a student or applicant who is an Australian or New Zealand citizen or an Australian permanent visa holder.
EFTSL (equivalent full-time student load): a value representing the student load for a subject or part of a subject expressed as a proportion of the workload for a standard annual enrolment for a student undertaking a full year of study in a particular year of a particular course.
elective: a subject which is not part of the core subjects of an award, but which may be undertaken as prescribed by the requirements of the course and credited towards that award.
enrolment: the process whereby an applicant submits an application for enrolment to the University for a year or part of a year. It includes the completion of required documents, the payment of appropriate fees and, for coursework students, the nomination of subjects. Enrolment must be completed at a time specified by the University. Conditions may be imposed on a student’s enrolment.
Enrolment Delegations Schedule: the register of positions authorised to make decisions on behalf of the University in relation to admissions and enrolments.
examination: a formal assessment by the University of the level of attainment in a particular component of a subject or a complete subject. Examinations are normally written but may be oral or practical. Such examinations are conducted by the University in accordance with the Examination Requirements.
examination script: a booklet provided by the University in which a student records answers to examination questions.
exclusion: termination by the University of a student’s admission to a course and of the right to be re-admitted to that course and in some intances, admitted to any course, of the University.
faculty: the organisation of several schools into an academic area responsible for the administration of courses.
Faculty Pro-Vice-Chancellor: the academic officer responsible for the provision of academic and management leadership in all aspects of a faculty’s activities.
fee statement: notification to students showing details of their debt to the University.
field trip: an activity which:
involves a student’s travel to and work at a place or places away from the University; and
relates to, and is a requirement for a course being undertaken by the student at the University; and
is carried out under the general control of a University staff member.
full-time student: a student who has enrolled for 18 or more credit points in one academic year. A normal full-time load is 24 credit points spread over an academic year. A student enrolled for 9 or more credit points in a teaching period may be classified as full-time for that teaching period.
grade point average: is a calculation of average subject grade or result. Each subject for which a grade has been awarded is included in the calculation. A Grade Point Average (GPA) will be higher where a student has achieved higher grades. Subjects which have a higher credit point value carry proportionately more weight than subjects with a lower credit point value.
graduand: a candidate who has fulfilled the requirements of an award but has not yet had the Award conferred.
graduate: a person who has had an award conferred following the completion of a defined course of study.
higher degree: an award at Master or Doctoral level.
Higher Education Loans Program (HELP): a Commonwealth Government loan program to help eligible students pay student contributions (HECS-HELP), tuition fees (FEE-HELP) and overseas study expenses (OS-HELP).
honours degree: an undergraduate award at a higher level of study which may contain a high level of research.
IELTS: International English Language Testing Service.
inadmissible combinations: two or more subjects with substantially overlapping content where enrolment in and credit for may be given in respect of a single subject and only once towards the same course.
intake period: the period of time for which an offer of place is made, and during which a successful applicant who has not deferred must commence their studies.
international student or applicant: a student or applicant who is not a domestic student.
invigilated assessment: assessment conducted in such a way that a member of staff of the University or a nominee acting on behalf of the University is thoroughly satisfied that the student is the author (including creator) of the work submitted for assessment.
Authorship may be assured in different ways, for example, by the assessor:
1. ensuring that the work was completed by the student in a properly supervised examination, test or similar formal assessment,
2. monitoring draft versions of the work presented by the student on a regular basis and interacting with the student in ways which would eliminate the possibility that an impostor was producing the work,
3. questioning or examining the student orally to ensure the skills, knowledge, understanding and values of the student are consistent with those illustrated in the work submitted for assessment.
4. comparing the nature and quality of the skills, knowledge, understanding and values illustrated by the student with work completed under conditions described in 1.
joint degree: an Award comprising the combination of two separate degrees.
leave of absence (LOA): an approved period of leave from a course of study. For research students, this is also referred to as ‘suspension of candidature’.
lecturer-in-charge: the academic staff member who is either solely responsible for the assessment in a subject, if he or she is the only person involved in teaching, or who is responsible for the coordination of assessment in the subject if more than one staff member is involved in teaching.
liability category: the type of fees payable by a student, such as ‘Domestic Tuition Fees’, ‘International Tuition Fees’ or ‘Commonwealth Supported’.
major: an approved sequence of subjects in a discipline or cognate group of disciplines. A major forms part of a course structure and may be included in
undergraduate or postgraduate courses eg BSc in Ecology.
Master Schedule of Subjects: a list of the subjects offered by the University in any year, together with their credit points, prerequisites, inadmissible subjects, study period and mode of delivery.
Masters degree by coursework: a Masters degree in which more than one-third of the student load for the course is required as coursework and less than two-thirds of the load is required as research.
Masters degree by research: a Masters degree in which at least two-thirds of the student load for the course is required as research work and not more than one-third is required as coursework.
medical certificate: a certificate signed by a registered medical practitioner. Other than in extraordinary circumstances, the University will not accept a medical certificate which has been signed by a person who is a close associate or near relative of the patient. The University will only accept original certificates or a certified copy of an original.
minor: an approved sequence of subjects in a discipline or cognate group of disciplines. A minor has a lesser number of credit points than a major, may only be taken in conjunction with a major, forms part of a course structure and may be included in undergraduate or postgraduate courses.
miscellaneous student: a candidate enrolled in one or more subjects but not in a course.
non-award course: a course offered by the University for which no Award is conferred upon successful completion.
Overall Position (OP): the score obtained by Queensland Year 12 students upon completion of their studies.
part-time student: a student who has enrolled for fewer than 18 credit points in one academic year. A student enrolled for fewer than 9 credit points in a teaching period may be classified as part-time for that teaching period.
plagiarism: reproduction without acknowledgement of another person’s words, work or thoughts from any source. The definition of words, works and thoughts includes such representations as diagrams, drawings, sketches, pictures, objects, text, lecture handouts, artistic works and other such expressions of ideas, but hereafter the term ‘work’ is used to embrace all of these.
Plagiarism comprises not only direct copying of aspects of another person’s work but also the reproduction, even if slightly rewritten or adapted, of someone else’s ideas. In both cases, someone else’s work is presented as the student’s own.
postgraduate: of or pertaining to a higher level course generally undertaken following completion of a Bachelor or Bachelor with Honours degree
prerequisite: a subject or a set of conditions which must be met before enrolment in a subject or admission to a course is approved.
program: a set combination of subjects which comprises an entire course structure. Completion of this set combination of subjects is compulsory in order to fulfil the award requirements. The term ‘program’ can be used in conjunction with courses at any level.
PRISMS: Provider Registration and International Students Management System
psychologist’s certificate: a certificate signed by a registered psychologist. Other than in extraordinary circumstances, the University will not accept a psychologist certificate which has been signed by a person who is a close associate or near relative of the patient. The University will only accept original certificates or a certified copy of an original.
quota: a limit set by the University on the number of students who may be admitted to a course or subject in a particular year.
re-enrolment: the process by which continuing students complete re-enrolment procedures for the following year and pay the appropriate fees. Re-enrolment must be completed at a time specified by the University.
school: a unit of academic organisation within a faculty, usually containing several disciplines which have related teaching and research responsibilities.
selection rank: the score assigned to non-immediate Queensland Year 12 students to reflect their qualifications and work experience.
semester: a principal study period of the academic year, generally consisting of 13 weeks of teaching, one week of lecture recess and one week of study vacation followed by an examination period.
show cause: the process whereby students, who do not attain a level of academic achievement prescribed for this purpose by the Academic Board on the recommendation of the relevant faculty, are required to submit in writing a statement supporting an application for continued re-enrolment in that course.
sponsor: an individual or organisation which is formally registered by the University as responsible for the payment of tuition fees for a named student or specific group of students.
statement of reasons: a written statement submitted by a student who has not met the minimum academic standards considered necessary for satisfactory progress, outlining the case why they should not have penalties imposed upon them.
student: a person who has been admitted to the University and has enrolled for a course or a subject, and whose enrolment for that course or for that subject has not lapsed or been cancelled. (See also commencing student and continuing student.)
student academic misconduct: any improper action taken by a student to gain an advantage when having academic work assessed. Students are referred to the University’s policy on Student Academic Misconduct.
Academic Misconduct includes:
cheating in an examination;
falsification of research results;
falsification of an academic record;
any other acts or omissions not included in the above which in the opinion of the Chair of the Academic Board reasonably represent Academic Misconduct.
student learning entitlement (SLE): an entitlement that gives eligible students access to a Commonwealth supported place. There are three types of SLE: ordinary SLE, additional SLE and lifelong SLE.
student load: student load is expressed in EFTSL (equivalent full-time student load) values.
study guide: this (i) provides students with detailed directions about everything they need to do in sequence and time frames in order to achieve the intended learning outcomes for the subject, and (ii) describes to local tutors the work students must do in order that tutors can assist students to achieve the learning outcomes.
study period: the period of time in which a subject is undertaken. Each study period has a designated start and end date, census date, last date by which students can add or substitute subjects without prior approval of subject coordinator, date for withdrawal without academic penalty, and date for release of subject results. In exceptional circumstances, the start and end date of a study period may vary for an individual subject.
subject: a discrete portion of a course, identified by a code, title and credit point value.
suspension of candidature: an approved period of leave from a research course. Also referred to as ‘leave of absence’.
teaching location: the campus or centre at which teaching takes place.
teaching period: an academic year is divided into two teaching periods. Teaching Period 1 is the first six months of the year and Teaching Period 2 is the second six months of the year. Subjects with a census date prior to the 1 July are classified as Teaching Period 1 subjects and subjects with a census date on or after the 1 July are classified as Teaching Period 2 subjects.
termination: the cancellation by the University of a student’s enrolment.
testamur: the official document signed by the Vice-Chancellor, the Registrar and the University Secretary as confirmation of the conferral of an award, or the award of a diploma or certificate.
thesis: a substantive description of the research undertaken for the purpose of obtaining a research degree (research component more than two-thirds of the degree requirements) together with any associated material that is also subject to examination.
trimester: a study period of the academic year, generally consisting of 12 - 15 weeks of teaching, followed by a two week period, by the end of which final assessment is due.
TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language.
undergraduate: of or pertaining to courses of study offered for a Bachelor degree, Bachelor with Honours degree, Advanced Diploma, Diploma or Certificate.
University Secretary: the member of staff who is Secretary to the Council of the University and Academic Board.
Vice-Chancellor: the chief executive officer of the University.
withdrawal: the formal cessation by a student of enrolment from a subject or course. Depending upon the timing, the withdrawal may appear on an academic record as a “withdrawal without failure” or as a “failure”.
Addition of: DIISRTE: the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education
Addition of definitions relating to medical certificate and psychologist's certificate
Changes to definitions relating to advanced standing and credit.
Changes to terms relating to attendance mode and the Leave of Absence from Study policy.
Changes to terms following implementation of Academic Progression Policy on 5/11/2007.
Changes to terms following approval of Admissions Policy at University Council on 22/03/2007