Teaching in a Language Other Than English

Document Currently Under Review

Current Status: For Uni-wide Comment 25 November 2015

Teaching in a Language Other Than English Policy

Policy Code: LT1093


All University courses are required to be taught and assessed in English, unless a School has received permission from Academic Board to instruct in an alternative language.  This policy aims to uphold the standard and quality of any the University programs taught in languages other than English for the purpose of ensuring the quality of the University’s graduates.


This policy applies to all teaching that occurs in a language other than English.


Academic Board: Provides academic oversight of prescribed academic programs of study of higher education in the University.
Course: Any course approved by Academic Board that leads to a qualification issued by the University.
Partner Providers: A third party with whom the University has a formal agreement under which a third party delivers courses on behalf of the University.

Policy Statement

All the University courses are normally taught in the English language, in exceptional circumstances Academic Board may approve the teaching of a course in languages other than English.  All assessment tasks, with the exception of foreign language courses, must be undertaken and assessed in English, approval will not be given for the offering of assessment tasks in a language other than English.

The University acknowledges that the acquisition and expression of skills and knowledge often requires an understanding of the subject matter in a cultural context and this may be best delivered in a local language or dialect in certain countries.  In these contexts programs/courses may be taught partly in English and another language.  However, the School would need to ensure all graduands are proficient in English.

No course is to be wholly taught in a language other than English.

Approval to offer programs partly in a language other than English must be obtained from Academic Board.  Such proposals must also be considered as part of the University process for approving partner provider agreements for international delivery.

Submissions to Academic Board seeking approval to offer programs in languages other than English, must include statements justifying the need to offer such programs in educational, cultural and economic terms and demonstrating that these programs/courses will have adequate and regular monitoring and periodic formal review.  The proposal must also detail how the program will meet the University’s Teaching and Assessing in a Language Other Than English Guidelines.

Any teaching materials provided to students in languages other than English must be of an equivalent standard and reviewed by the course co-ordinators on an on-going basis.

Special assessment conditions will not be made available to students for whom English is a second language solely on the basis that they have difficulty with reading and writing English.

Use of bilingual dictionaries for invigilated assessments is allowed if a student applies for and receives a letter of authorisation from the Head of School giving permission for its use, in accordance with the University’s Students from a Non-English Speaking Background - Special Provisions for Invigilated Assessments Guidelines.

For the University to ensure the quality of its programs all teaching staff must be fluent in written and spoken English.  The teaching of programs/courses in languages other than English will not affect the minimum language requirements which are a prerequisite for admission to the University.

Programs which are partly taught in a language other than English are to be included in course review or re-accreditation processes that the relevant School undertakes, using the same standards as those that apply to programs taught in English.


Academic Board is responsible for approvals arising under this policy and the review of the policy.  The Deputy Vice-Chancellors, as appropriate, will be responsible for the implementation of the policy.


The Teaching in a Language Other Than English Policy will be implemented throughout the University via:

  1. an Announcement Notice under ‘FedNews’ on the ‘FedUni’ website and through the University Policy - ‘Recently Approved Documents’ webpage to alert the University-wide community of the approved Policy; and
  2. inclusion on the University's online Policy Library.