October 1, 2009

Strengthening the AQF – An Architecture for Australia’s Qualifications: IRU Submission

IRU welcomes the broad structure of the proposed framework and the setting of scaffolded and hierarchical learning outcomes that provide for greater clarity in classification of qualifications into categories. We suggest that once finalised there should be tighter regulation of compliance with the qualification categories, rather than the current situation where they are sometimes used as optional guidelines. The proposed AQF needs to be carefully assessed in the context of other current higher education processes and developments including CRICOS registration, the Bologna model and strengthening Pathways in post-school education. For example, the descriptor for the Doctoral Degree specifies a notional duration of 3-5 years. Have the consequences for the award of PhD scholarships funded by DEEWR been explored? Will a candidature of 5 years be supported by scholarships?