Establishment and discontinuation of courses and study programmes
Before a new study programme can be established, the University carries out an assessment of the qualitative conditions required for a study programme to be offered at Lund University. If the validation is successful, it results in a decision to establish the programme. This also applies to new main fields of study that lead to general degrees and to third-cycle subjects, however, the processes are different. The validation looks at how the programme fits with the needs of students and the labour market, how the programme is to be funded, and how it is linked to existing research in the field.
A decision to discontinue a study programme must also be thoroughly considered. For example, consideration must be given to students enrolled in the programme, but also to the range of education at the University and its assignment as a whole.
In order for the decisions to have legal security and to be transparent, regulations have been drawn up by the education board and the research programmes board.
Validation and discontinuation of first- and second-cycle study programmes
Decisions to establish or discontinue study programmes are taken by the Education Board to enable university-wide discussion on the quality and range of education offered. This reduces the risk for overlap between different courses and study programmes and strategic educational planning is made possible.
The process to establish new study programmes is guided by management rules that state that an external assessment group as well as the faculty board are to provide statements on the proposed study programme.
The Education Board has drawn up a guide for the establishment of new study programmes. It is not compulsory but may function as a support tool for the faculties.
Establishment of a main field of study for general qualifications
Decisions to establish new main fields of study are taken by the Faculty Board. The faculty is to consider the same aspects as for the establishment of new study programmes; however, there are no requirements to use an external assessment group or to submit an application to the Education Board.
The faculty is responsible for carrying out discussions with other units of the University to avoid overlap with closely related main fields of study and to increase the clarity for the students.
Decisions to discontinue a main field of study are taken by the Faculty Board. The faculty should use the same process and documentations as for the discontinuation of a study programme.
Establishment and discontinuation of a third-cycle subject
Decisions to establish new third-cycle subjects are taken by the Faculty Board or the body delegated with the task at the faculty level. There are no requirements to use an external assessment group; however, there are a series of conditions to be met for a new third-cycle programme to be established:
- the research environment must be active and sufficiently comprehensive in relation to the study programme
- there must be sufficient supervisor resources and potential supervisors must have relevant disciplinary and teaching expertise
- the name of the third-cycle programme must provide clear information on its position in relation to both national standards and international practice
If the conditions for a subject to admit doctoral students or to offer third-cycle studies changes, discontinuation may be considered. Decisions to discontinue an existing third-cycle subject are taken by the Faculty Board. Before a discontinuation decision is taken, options for current doctoral students to complete their studies are to be investigated.