Policy Central Glossary



the process for approval by an accrediting authority of a program of learning leading to an AQF qualification using the quality assurance standards for the relevant education and training sector.

Accrediting Authority

either authorised under legislation or has been given responsibility to accredit programs of learning leading to AQF qualifications and/or to register providers to issue AQF qualifications.


the Federation University Australia Act 2014 (Vic.).


a process to determine a student's achievement of expected learning outcomes and may include a range of written and oral methods and practice or demonstration.

Assessment (HE)

the process of collecting evidence and making judgements on whether the agreed learning outcomes for that course has been achieved. A specific, discrete learning activity or exercise designed to obtain evidence about a student's achievement of the published learning outcomes of a course. Tasks can be diagnostic, formative or summative, including but not limited to, essays, presentations, performance, exhibition or final examinations.

Assessment (VET)

the process of collecting evidence and making judgements on whether competency has been achieved, to confirm that an individual can perform to the standard required in the workplace, as specified in a training package or VET accredited course.

Assessment task

an assignment, essay, examination, practicum, presentation, project or any other assessable part of a program or course, whether mandatory or optional.


are persons who assess a learner's competence.

Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)

Australia's national policy for regulated qualifications. The AQF encompasses higher education, vocational education and training and school education. It provides for national recognition and a consistent understanding of what defines each qualification type.

Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA)

the national regulator for Australia's vocational education and training (VET) sector.

Authorised officer

an authorised officer appointed under the Federation University Australia (Operations) Regulations 2022.


a degree, diploma, certificate, licence or other award in any discipline which is specified in the AQF as a standard for Australian education qualifications.

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a means by which an entity can:

  • demonstrate accountability to stakeholders
  • improve networking and collaborative relationships
  • generate management information
  • develop an increased understanding of practice, process or performance
  • garner insights into how improvements might be made.
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Casual staff

staff who are engaged and paid on an hourly or sessional basis, and who have no entitlement to paid annual, sick or long service leave.


the person appointed to the office of Chancellor of the University under section 24 of the Federation University Act.


in relation to intellectual property, means selling, hiring, licensing or otherwise disposing of or dealing with intellectual property (other than the use of course material in the delivery of a University program or course), including- the design, development, manufacture or distribution of the intellectual property; and the provision of any product or service based on, or incorporating, the intellectual property.

Commercialised intellectual property

includes University intellectual property and intellectual property transferred to the University which is commercialised in accordance with the Federation University Australia (Operations) Regulations 2022.

Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS)

a searchable database, run by the Australian Government, which lists all Australian education providers (and their courses) for people studying in Australia on student visas. The CRICOS database operates under the Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) legislative framework.


the consistent application of knowledge and skill to the standard of performance required in the workplace. It embodies the ability to transfer and apply skills and knowledge to new situations and environments.


the Council of Federation University Australia, the governing body with ultimate decision making authority over the higher education provider and its operations.

Council appointed member

a member of the Council appointed under section 13 of the Federation University Act


a component of a program of study leading to an award

Course completion

the successful completion of all the academic requirements of a course of study. This includes any required attendance, assignments, examinations, assessments, dissertations, practical experience and work experience in industry. Where a combined course automatically leads to two separate awards, a course completion will only occur when the requirements of both awards have been satisfied.

Course material

work created for use in, or in connection with, a program or course


a method of teaching and learning that leads to the acquisition of skills and knowledge that does not include a major research component


the value assigned for the recognition of equivalence in content and learning outcomes between different types of learning and/or qualifications. Credit reduces the amount of learning required to achieve a qualification and may be through credit transfer, articulation, recognition of prior learning or advanced standing

Credit transfer

a process that provides students with agreed and consistent credit outcomes for components of a qualification based on identified equivalence in content and learning outcomes between matched qualifications

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a defined branch of study or learning.


Deputy Vice-Chancellor


Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Vocational Education and Training and Chief Executive Officer Technical and Further Education

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Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS)

the legal framework which governs the delivery of education to overseas students studying in Australia on a student visa. The framework sets out clear roles and responsibilities for providers of education and training to international students and complements Australia's student visa laws.


use of any digital technology or resources to deliver and support specific teaching and learning aims/outcomes. Also referred to as 'online learning' or 'technology enhanced learning'.

Elected member

means a member of the Council

English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students (ELICOS)

courses offered to students studying in Australia on student visas. 'Intensive' denotes full-time study load (20 scheduled course contact hours per week).

English language proficiency

the ability of students to use the English language to make and communicate meaning in spoken and written contexts while completing their course of study.

Equivalent Full-Time Student (EFTS)

a measure of the study load, for a year, of a single student undertaking a course of study on a full time basis.

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Financial viability

financial resources and financial management capacity to sustain higher education provision consistent with the requirements of the Provider Registration Standards outlined in the Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2021.

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Government appointed member

a member of the Council appointed under section 12(1) or (2) of the Federation University Act


a graduate is a person who has been awarded a degree, diploma, certificate, license or other award

Graduate attributes

generic learning outcomes that refer to transferable, non-discipline specific skills that a graduate may achieve through learning that have application in study, work and life contexts.

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HDR student

Higher Degree by Research student enrolled in one of the following courses of study: Masters Degree (Research), Doctoral Degree (Research), or Doctoral Degree (Professional)

Higher Degree by Research (HDR) Program

one of the following courses of study: Masters Degree (Research), Doctoral Degree (Research), or Doctoral Degree (Professional)

Higher education award

a diploma, advanced diploma, associate degree, bachelor degree, graduate certificate graduate diploma, masters degree or doctoral degree a qualification covered by level 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 or 10 of the Australian Qualifications Framework an award of a similar kind, or represented as being of a similar kind, to any of the above awards other than an award offered or conferred for the completion of a vocational education and training course.

Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2021 (HES Framework)

the minimum level of achievement that a provider must meet and maintain to registered to deliver higher education courses of study.

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Indigenous Traditional Knowledge

Indigenous Australians' rights to their heritage, consisting of intangible and tangible aspects of the whole body of cultural practices, resources and knowledge systems developed nurtured and refined by Indigenous people and passed on by them as part of expressing their cultural identity, including distinctive signs and symbols, practices, know-how and skills


an academic Institute of the University

Intellectual property (IP)

rights in relation to copyright, designs, inventions, plant varieties, trade marks (including service marks), confidential information, trade secrets, know-how, circuit layouts and patent rights, whether or not registered; and (b) confidential information or any rights resulting from intellectual activity in the industrial, scientific, literary or artistic fields, including rights under the Patents Act 1990, Copyright Act 1968, Designs Act 2003, Trade Marks Act 1995, Plant Breeders' Rights Act 1994, Circuit Layouts Act 1989 and rights under any convention to which Australia is a party and under the common law.

Intellectual property management code

any relevant Australian code for the management of intellectual property at publicly funded universities, including- the National Principles of Intellectual Property Management for Publicly Funded Research developed by a working party of the Australian Government's Coordinating Committee on Innovation; any successor documents.

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a person being trained and/or assessed by the RTO for the purpose of issuing AQF certification documentation.

Learning outcomes

the expression of the set of knowledge, skills and the application of the knowledge and skills a person has acquired and is able to demonstrate as a result of learning.


a member of University staff with responsibility for management of the library.


the University library, including premises and facilities through which library services (both digital and physical) are provided.

Library staff

persons employed or engaged by the University or a contractor of the University to provide library services.

Library user

a member of the University; a person who has been permitted by the University to use the library.

Lifelong learning

lifelong learning is the term used to describe any learning activities that are undertaken throughout life to acquire knowledge, skills and the application of knowledge and skills within personal, civic, social and/or employment-related contexts.

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Material change

a registered higher education provider is required to notify TEQSA if any of the following events occur or are likely to occur:

  • an event that will significantly affect the provider's ability to meet the Threshold Standards
  • an event that will require the National Register to be updated in respect to the provider.

means the certification, following a short-term learning experience, of an individual's focused learning achievement which may have stand-alone value or be credit-bearing and which may complement or contribute to other micro-credentials and/or micro- programs;


a credit-bearing short learning program which does not lead to an award.

Mode of delivery

the method adopted to deliver training and assessment, including online, distance, or blended methods.

Moderation of assessment

quality assurance, control processes and activities such as peer review that aim to assure:

  • consistency or comparability, appropriateness, and fairness of assessment judgments
  • the validity and reliability of assessment tasks, criteria and standards
  • Moderation of assessment processes establish comparability of standards of student performance across, for example, different markers, locations, subjects, providers and/or courses of study.
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National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2018 (National Code 2018)

provides nationally consistent standards for the conduct of registered providers and the registration of their courses. These standards set out specifications and procedures to ensure that registered providers of education and training courses can clearly understand and comply with their obligations.

Nested qualifications

qualifications that include articulated arrangements from a lower level qualification into a higher level qualification to enable multiple entry and exit points.

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a member of staff or a student who creates or invents any form of intellectual property, whether alone or in conjunction with other persons.

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allow students to move through qualification levels with full or partial recognition for the qualifications and/or learning outcomes they already have.


are the abbreviated forms of an AQF qualification type and field of study/discipline used by graduates to identify their qualification.


a program of study leading to an award under the AQF.

Program admission

the University process for program admission established in accordance with the Federation University Australia (Academic) Regulations 2022.

Program of learning

a course, curriculum, training package, units of study, or structured workplace learning that leads to the award of a qualification.

Program specification

a document setting out the design and content of a program made in accordance with University policies and procedures. Note: Regulation 12 provides that the University must establish policies and procedures for the establishment of programs. These must provide for the making of program specifications.

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the result of an accredited complete program of learning that leads to formal certification that a graduate has achieved learning outcomes as described in the AQF.

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Recognition of prior learning (RPL)

an assessment process that involves assessment of an individual's relevant prior learning (including formal, informal and non-formal learning) to determine the credit outcomes of an individual application for credit.

Record of results

a record of all learning leading to an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) qualification or an accredited unit in which a student is enrolled. This may be called a:

  • transcript of results
  • academic transcript
  • record of achievement
  • or statement of results.
Registered training organisation (RTO)

a vocational education and training organisation registered by a state or territory registering body in accordance with the Australian Quality Training Framework (AQTF) Essential Standards for Registration within a defined scope of registration.


comprises systematic experimental and theoretical work, application and/or development that results in an increase in the dimensions of knowledge.

Research Centre

a Centre of Research specialisation(s) at the University.

Research code

any relevant Australian code for the conduct of research at publicly funded universities, including- the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research developed jointly by the National Health and Medical Research Council and Universities Australia; any successor documents.

Research intellectual property

intellectual property created in the course of research at the University, including intellectual property which is created by an HDR student in the course of an agreed research program.

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refers to Global Professional School, the Graduate Research School and any other School constituted after the commencement of the Federation University Australia (Academic) Regulations 2022.

Scope of registration

the training products for which an RTO is registered to issue AQF certification documentation. It allows the RTO to:

  • both provide training delivery and assessment resulting in the issuance of AQF certification documentation by the RTO;
  • or provide assessment resulting in the issuance of AQF certification documentation by the RTO.

the Secretary to the Academic Board and/or Council.

Self-accrediting provider

a provider who has been given responsibility to accredit its own qualifications.

Senior officer

refers to the Vice-Chancellor; or a Deputy Vice-Chancellor.


what a graduate can do. They can be described in terms of kinds and complexity and include cognitive, technical , communication, creative, interpersonal and generic.


persons employed by the University.

Statement of attainment

recognises that one or more accredited units has been achieved.


the Federation University Australia Statute 2021.


(a) a person enrolled at the University in a course leading to a degree, diploma, certificate, licence or other award; or (b) a person who is designated as a student or is of a class of persons designated as students by the Council.

Student cohort

all students commencing a course of study in a particular year with a higher education provider. Student cohorts may be classified by:

  • entry pathway
  • mode of study
  • place of study
  • other groupings.
Student contact hours

time spent by students in timetabled teaching and learning activities, such as:

  • face-to-face lectures
  • tutorials
  • supervised study
  • field trips
  • work-integrated learning activities
  • clinical and other placements.
Student research

research conducted for the purposes of an honour's thesis or coursework thesis; and research conducted for the purposes of any component of a higher degree by research.

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TAFE Division

the TAFE Division of the University.

Technical and Further Education (TAFE)

specifically Federation TAFE. A government-run system in Australia that provides vocational education.

Tertiary Education Quality Standards Agency (TEQSA)

the independent national quality assurance and regulatory agency for Australia's higher education sector.


an official certification document that confirms that a qualification has been awarded to an individual.


the process used by an RTO or a third party delivering services on its behalf, to facilitate learning and the acquisition of competencies in relation to the training product on the RTO's scope of registration.

Training package

the components of a training package endorsed by the Industry and Skills Council or its delegate in accordance with the Standards for Training Packages. The endorsed components of a Training Package are:

  • units of competency;
  • assessment requirements (associated with each unit of competency);
  • qualifications; and
  • credit arrangements.

The endorsed components form part of the requirements that an RTO must meet under these Standards. A training package also consists of a non-endorsed, quality assured companion volume/s which contains industry advice to RTOs on different aspects of implementation.

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University regulations

means the regulations of the University made under Part 5 of the Federation University Australia Act 2010.

University Statute

means the statute of the University made under Part 5 of the Federation University Australia Act 2010.

Unspecified credit

is credit granted towards elective components of a qualification or program of learning.

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the quality review of the assessment process. Validation involves checking that the assessment tool/s produce/s valid, reliable, sufficient, current and authentic evidence to enable reasonable judgements to be made as to whether the requirements of the training package or VET accredited courses are met. It includes reviewing a statistically valid sample of the assessments and making recommendations for future improvements to the assessment tool, process and/or outcomes and acting upon such recommendations.


the person appointed to the office of Vice-Chancellor and President (includes an interim Vice-Chancellor or an acting Vice-Chancellor). Responsible to the University Council for the academic and administrative affairs of the University and for maintaining, reviewing and promoting the effectiveness, efficiency and good order of the University.

Victorian Registration and Qualifications Agency (VRQA)

is responsible for the regulation of education and training providers and qualifications in Victoria from home schooling to higher education. The VRQA is accountable to the Minister for Education in relation to the regulation of schools and to the Minister for Training and Skills in relation to the regulation of tertiary providers.

Vocational Education and Training (VET)

skills based education and training

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Work integrated learning

structured and purposefully designed learning and assessment activities integrate theory with the practice of work. Work-integrated learning includes service learning, and activities normally involve students interacting with industry and community within a work context or similar situation.