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Articulation Agreement Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) The purpose of this policy is to:

  1. Guide the creation and review of articulation arrangements within Melbourne Polytechnic and with external institutions.
  2. Ensure articulation arrangements enable students to achieve their learning objectives whilst maintaining the academic standards of qualifications.
  3. Enable tracking of the currency and success of all articulation agreements.
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Section 2 - Scope

(2) This policy applies to the creation, implementation and review of all articulation agreements within Melbourne Polytechnic and with external institutions.

(3) This policy does not apply to individual student applications for credit nor for recognition of prior learning governed by the Credit (HE) or Skills and Learning Recognition Policy (VET). This policy does not apply in the case of entry into Institute Accredited Courses (IACs).

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Section 3 - Policy

Policy Statement

(4) Melbourne Polytechnic may enter into an articulation agreement to evidence approval of admission and advanced standing for an identified cohort of prospective students.

(5) Students may choose to utilise the agreement having guaranteed admission and advanced standing providing a choice for further education progressing from their previous place of study. 

Policy Principles

(6) This policy is guided by Melbourne Polytechnic’s Vision and Education Strategy and the following principles and standards:

  1. articulation agreements provide students with clear, defined and guaranteed pathways through proposed and reviewed MP Articulation Agreement Proformas.
  2. can be designed to include credentials as appropriate to the Articulation Agreement;
  3. do not limit a student’s ability to apply for further recognition of formal, informal or non-formal learning outside and in addition to a pathway agreement;
  4. may be across AQF or equivalent qualifications at the same level as well as between qualifications at different levels;
  5. will facilitate entry into, as well as credits towards, AQF qualifications, and eliminate unfair or unnecessary barriers for student access to qualifications;
  6. will be regularly reviewed to maximise applicability to new and updated qualifications and to student and industry needs; and
  7. are shared via a published register which is accessible to prospective students, enabling them to make well-informed admission choices and take account of the credit that may be available to them through previous study. 

(7) MP’s decisions regarding the provision of credit into or towards AQF qualifications as part of an articulation agreement will:

  1. be evidence-based, equitable and transparent;
  2. be applied consistently and fairly with decisions subject to appeal and review; 
  3. recognise learning regardless of how, when and where it was acquired, provided that the learning is relevant and current and has a relationship to the learning outcomes of the qualification;
  4. be academically defensible and take account of the student’s ability to meet the learning outcomes of the qualification successfully;
  5. be decided in a timely way so that student’s access to qualifications is not unnecessarily inhibited;
  6. allow past study to be used to meet prerequisites or other specified requirements for entry into a program of study leading to a qualification;
  7. be formally documented and communicated to the student and will include reasons for credit not being granted.

(8) An articulation agreement does not preclude an individual student negotiating additional credit.

Articulation Schedule

(9) The MP Articulation Schedule aligns with relevant Institute governance approvals and will be used to ensure consistency of articulation agreements across MP. Application to Vary the Articulation Schedule must accompany any articulation agreement.

Articulation Arrangements

(10) An Articulation Agreement should only be established in accordance with the principles set down in this policy and related procedure. An Articulation Agreement may include recognition of formal and non-formal prior credentials, including micro-credentials and non-accredited professional industry certification.

(11) The required curriculum mapping should be consistent with the AQF pathways policy and principles, especially with regard to the comparability and equivalence of the learning outcomes, volume of learning, program of study (including content), and learning and assessment approaches of the programs.

(12) Articulation agreements may be developed within Melbourne Polytechnic between or within VET and HE courses or by Melbourne Polytechnic with other institutions into VET or HE courses to facilitate student movement between institutions and standardise the credit awarded to incoming students.

(13) Articulation agreements will generally have a period of three years for internal arrangements and maximum five years for external arrangements. Agreements and the advanced standing provisions will be subject to review before being recommended for renewal. Agreements will require each party to inform the other immediately of any relevant change to their scheduled course(s) and the Agreement and Schedule(s) will be reviewed and amended as required by such changes.

(14) All documentation used to support articulation agreements must be retained in a central repository and made available upon request for quality assurance purposes or other approved use. These may include; curriculum mapping; assessment of equivalency and the resulting articulation agreement.

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Section 4 - Responsibility and Accountability

(15) Executive Director Academic Operations will be accountable for all articulation agreements in:

  1. Higher Education (HE);
  2. Vocational Education and Training (VET); and
  3. Foundation Directorate (FD).

(16) Director Higher Education will be responsible for HE Articulation Agreements and accountable for HE information on the articulation agreement register.

(17) Director Vocational Education and Trainingis responsible for VET Articulation Agreements and accountable for VET information on the articulation agreement register.

(18) Director Foundation is responsible for Articulation Agreements in Foundation studies and accountable for Foundation information on the articulation agreement register.

(19) MP Staff are responsible for creation and currency of articulation agreements.

(20) Program Leaders (PL’s)/Heads of Program/s (HOPs) will be responsible for oversight of articulation agreements involving their courses including mapping documentation.

(21) Articulation agreement recommendation will be the responsibility of Higher Education Course Committee (HECC), the Director Vocational Education and Training and Director Foundation.

(22) The Articulation Officer will be responsible for the articulation agreement repository which will house;

  1. All articulation documentation which will include;
    1. mapping documents
    2. signed agreements
    3. application/s to vary the articulation schedule
  2. Monitoring and review of articulation progression and completion of all articulated students.

(23) The Articulation Officer and the Marketing team will be responsible for publishing and updating the articulation register on the Melbourne Polytechnic website.

(24) The Curriculum Board approves VET Articulation Agreements, while the Higher Education Academic Board approves HE Articulation Agreements.

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Section 5 - Supporting Documents and Templates

Related Melbourne Polytechnic policies and procedures:

  1. Articulation Agreement Procedure
  2. Articulation Register
  3. Articulation Information and Mapping Template
  4. Articulation Approval - CB Briefing Paper Template - FOR DECISION
  5. Internal Articulation (HE) Form
  6. Staff and Student Diversity and Inclusion Policy

Higher Education

  1. Assessment, Credit and Moderation (HE) Policy
  2. Assessment (HE) Procedure
  3. Course Review (HE) Procedure
  4. Credit (HE) Form
  5. Credit (HE) Procedure
  6. Course Structure (HE) Policy
  7. Moderation and Validation (HE) Procedure
  8. Staff and Student Diversity and Inclusion Policy
  9. Work Integrated Learning (HE) Policy
  10. Work Integrated Learning (HE) Procedure

Vocational Education and Training

  1. Assessment (VET and Foundation) Policy
  2. Assessment (VET and Foundation) Procedure
  3. Course Design and Development (VET, Foundation and IACs) Policy
  4. Course Design and Development (IAC) Procedure
  5. Industry Engagement (VET and Foundation) Procedure
  6. Practical Placement (VET) Procedure
  7. Training and Assessment Strategy template
  8. Skills and Learning Recognition (VET) Policy


  1. Staff and Student Diversity and Inclusion Policy
  2. Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA)

Institute Accredited Courses (IAC)

  1. Delivery and Assessment Strategy template
  2. Course Design and Development (IAC) Procedure
  3. Staff and Student Diversity and Inclusion Policy

Related Legislation and Regulation

  1. Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)

Higher Education

  1. Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (ESOS Act)
  2. Higher Education Academic Board Terms of Reference
  3. National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2018
  4. Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2021
  5. Tertiary Education Quality Standards Agency (TEQSA)

Vocational Education and Training

  1. Australian Core Skills Framework
  2. Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA)
  3. Curriculum Board Terms of Reference
  4. Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (ESOS Act)
  5. National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2018
  6. Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) 2015
  7. Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority (VRQA)

Related Melbourne Polytechnic Strategies

  1. Aboriginal Education Strategy 2018 – 2021
  2. Environmental Sustainability Strategy 2020 – 2025
  3. Education Strategy 2019 - 2023.
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Section 6 - Definitions

(25) For the purpose of this policy the following definitions apply:

  1. Accredited Program: A VET or higher education course accredited by ASQA or TEQSA, or by an institution registered with the appropriate authority as self-accrediting.
  2. ASQA: Australian Skills Quality Authority, the body that regulates courses and training providers to assure nationally approved quality standards.
  3. Advanced Standing: The credit granted towards a MP program of study for any previous learning.
  4. AQF: Australian Qualifications Framework.
  5. AQF Qualification: An AQF qualification is the result of an accredited course of learning that leads to formal certification that a graduate has achieved learning outcomes as described in the AQF.
  6. Articulation agreement: An agreement within MP or between MP and an external institution that will allow a student to gain admission and/or predetermined advanced standing for their previous studies.
  7. Block credit: Block credit is credit granted towards whole stages or components of a program of learning leading to a qualification (AQF).
  8. Credit: Credit is 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 (AQF).
  9. Credit Transfer: The 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 (AQF).  
  10. Defined Pathway: A credential pathway that has been defined by MP as governed by the Articulation Agreement Policy.
  11. HE – Higher Education
  12. Higher Education Course Committee (HECC): HECC advises on the development and review of courses in their assigned field of education, including matters of quality assurance, academic risk, industry and professional standards.
  13. Institute Accredited Course (IAC): is an applied learning program that delivers a learning outcome that is not formally recognised under the AQF. An IAC could take the form of a short course, a micro-credential, skills development, or a course of study with multiple subjects.
  14. Learning Outcomes: Learning outcomes are 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.
  15. Pathways: Pathways allow students to move through qualification levels with full or partial recognition for the qualifications and/or learning outcomes they already have. See also credit, credit transfer, recognition of prior learning and articulation (AQF).
  16. Qualification – relates to the formal AQF and comparable qualifications.
  17. Recognition of Prior Learning: An assessment process that involves assessment of an individual’s relevant prior learning (including formal, informal and non-formal learning) to determine the advanced standing outcomes of an individual application for credit (National Quality Council Training Packages glossary) (AQF).
  18. TEQSA: Tertiary Education Qualifications Standards Agency, the national regulator of Australia's higher education sector.
  19. VET - Vocational Education and Training.
  20. Volume of Learning (as defined in the AQF): The volume of learning identifies the notional duration of all activities required for the achievement of the learning outcomes specified for a particular AQF qualification type. It is expressed in equivalent full-time years.