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Official degrees VSMA Framework

The Validation, Monitoring, Modification and Accreditation Framework (VSMA Framework) for official degrees ties the quality assurance processes (validation, monitoring, modification and accreditation) carried out over the lifetime of a course to two objectives—the goal of establishing coherent links between these processes, and that of achieving greater efficiency in their management—all with the overarching aim of improving programmes.

Regulations, procedure, support material: https://www.upc.edu/seguimentdetitulacions/ca

Validation

To be officially valid, EHEA degrees must undergo an assessment process, called “validation”, which is administered by the Catalan University Quality Assurance Agency (AQU Catalunya). Programme proposals must be drafted in accordance with UPC regulations and AQU Catalunya guides. Once a course has been validated, the Government of Catalonia, in accordance with established programming criteria and the availability of funding, must give its authorisation before the new programme can be introduced. Finally, the Spanish Council of Ministers establishes the official character of university degrees and orders that they be added to the Register of Universities, Schools and Degrees (RUCT).

Monitoring

Once a degree has been validated, the course must be monitored by analysing data and indicators. Where appropriate, proposals for improvement must be drafted to correct any deviations observed between the course design proposed at the validation stage and the programme subsequently implemented. This assessment process, carried out by the academics responsible for the course, must be documented in a report that will serve as evidence for degree accreditation. Changes to a degree may only be made if they have been noted in this report.

Access to support tool: https://gpaq.upc.edu/seguimentiacreditacio/

Modification

Changes to official degrees are a natural and anticipated outcome of monitoring and may only be made as a result of this process. Therefore, courses may only undergo the modification process once each academic year. Changes can be classified as follows:

  • Non-substantial modifications: minor changes that represent improvements to a degree and are added to the validation report when a course must undergo a modification process.
  • Substantial modifications: changes that imply alterations to the structure or the nature and objectives of a course.
    - Authorisable: changes that affect the structure of a degree but do not alter its nature and objectives. Authorisation to make changes of this type may be requested via the modification process.
    - • Non-authorisable: substantial changes that affect the nature and objectives of a validated degree. In this case, the institution must submit a new application for validation of the modified course and discontinue the existing programme.

Accreditation

Bachelor’s and doctoral degrees must undergo a process of accreditation within six years of their initial validation (or most recent accreditation). In the case of master’s degrees, the time limit for accreditation or re-accreditation is four years. Based on an assessment report prepared by the academics responsible for the degree and a visit by an external assessment committee appointed by AQU Catalunya, a report on the performance of the study programme is issued.

Access to support tool: https://gpaq.upc.edu/seguimentiacreditacio/

VSMA Framework – programme assessment results: https://gpaq.upc.edu/resultatsVSMA/main/viewTitulacionsCentre/164

Evidence: internal and external reports

VERIFICACIÓ SEGUIMENT ACREDITACIÓ RUCT
Memòria Verificació Resolució Verificació Acord Consejo Ministros Informe Seguiment IS-PD Informe seguiment d'universitat PD ISU-PD Informe Valoració Seguiment IVS-PD AutoInforme Acreditació IA-PD Informe seguiment i acreditació d'universitat PD ISAU-PD Informe d'avaluació externa IAE-CAE
Programa Doctorat MECD BOE Programa Doctorat Escola Doctorat AQU Programa Doctorat Escola Doctorat AQU MECD
AEROSPACE SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
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AGRI-FOOD TECHNOLOGY AND BIOTECHNOLOGY
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APPLIED MATHEMATICS
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ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN
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ARCHITECTURAL, BUILDING CONSTRUCTION AND URBANISM TECHNOLOGY
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ARCHITECTURAL, CIVIL AND URBAN HERITAGE AND REFURBISHMENT OF EXISTING BUILDINGS
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ARCHITECTURE, ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT
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ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE
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AUTOMATIC CONTROL, ROBOTICS AND VISION
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BIOINFORMATICS
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BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING
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BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION AND MANAGEMENT
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CHEMICAL PROCESS ENGINEERING
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CIVIL ENGINEERING
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COMPUTATIONAL AND APPLIED PHYSICS
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COMPUTER ARCHITECTURE
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COMPUTING
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CONSTRUCTION ENGINEERING
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EARTHQUAKE ENGINEERING AND STRUCTURAL DYNAMICS
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ELECTRIC ENERGY SYSTEMS
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ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING
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ELECTRONIC ENGINEERING
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ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING
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ERASMUS MUNDUS IN ADVANCED MATERIALS SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING # PROGRAM IN EXTINCTION #
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ERASMUS MUNDUS IN DISTRIBUTED COMPUTING # PROGRAM IN EXTINCTION #
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ERASMUS MUNDUS IN ENVIRONOMICAL PATHWAYS FOR SUSTAINABLE ENERGY SERVICES (SELECT+)
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ERASMUS MUNDUS IN INFORMATION TECHNOLOGIES FOR BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE (IT4BI – DC)
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ERASMUS MUNDUS IN INTERACTIVE AND COGNITIVE ENVIRONMENTS # PROGRAM IN EXTINCTION #
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ERASMUS MUNDUS IN PHOTONICS ENGINEERING, NANOPHOTONICS AND BIOPHOTONICS (EUROPHOTONICS) # PROGRAM IN EXTINCTION #
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ERASMUS MUNDUS IN SIMULATION IN ENGINEERING AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP DEVELOPMENT (SEED) # PROGRAM IN EXTINCTION #
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GEOTECHNICAL ENGINEERING
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MARINE SCIENCES
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MATERIALS SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING
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MECHANICAL, FLUIDS AND AEROSPACE ENGINEERING
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NATURAL RESOURCES AND ENVIRONMENT
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NAUTICAL ENGINEERING, MARINE AND NAVAL RADIOELECTRONICS
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NETWORK ENGINEERING
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NUCLEAR AND IONIZING RADIATION ENGINEERING
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OPTICAL ENGINEERING
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PHOTONICS
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POLYMERS AND BIOPOLYMERS
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SIGNAL THEORY AND COMMUNICATIONS
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STATISTICS AND OPERATIONS RESEARCH
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STRUCTURAL ANALYSIS
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SUPPLY CHAIN AND OPERATIONS MANAGEMENT
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SUSTAINABILITY
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TEXTILE AND PAPER ENGINEERING
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THEORY AND HISTORY OF ARCHITECTURE
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THERMAL ENGINEERING
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TRANSPORT ENGINEERING AND INFRASTRUCTURE # PROGRAM IN EXTINCTION #
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URBAN AND ARCHITECTURAL MANAGEMENT AND VALUATION
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URBANISM
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