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UCL granted degree awarding powers

27 September 2005

UCL (University College London) today announced that its application for taught and research degree-awarding powers has been successful. The Privy Council Office has now invited UCL to submit amendments to the UCL Charter so as to make its new power to award its own degrees explicit.

In common with all of the colleges of the University of London, UCL currently awards degrees in the name of the University of London . UCL's successful application for powers to award its own degrees was pursued on the understanding that these would be held in reserve rather than exercised immediately, pending further consideration. The University of London has recently introduced provisions in its ordinances which enable colleges of the university to award their own degrees.

“UCL believes that holding its own degree awarding powers is a logical step, given our demonstrable experience of assuring of academic quality and standards, maintaining and enhancing the learning environment of our students, and developing and sustaining the research and teaching excellence of our academic staff,” said Professor Malcolm Grant, President and Provost of UCL. “I am naturally delighted therefore that the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) has recommended to the DfES that we be awarded such powers.

“While there is a clear understanding that the powers are to be held in reserve rather than exercised straight away, I believe that it is in the interests of UCL academics and students for these powers to be available to us to invoke as necessary. This is especially so at a time when the University of London is consulting about its future as a federal university. Given that UCL, along with all of the other colleges of the university, is an autonomous institution responsible for its finances, educational quality and research, I believe it makes sense for us to be able to respond flexibly to potential structural changes in the university in the coming years. The award of degree awarding powers, following a stringent audit of our activity, is therefore news that I believe will be welcomed by the whole UCL community.”

Notes for Editors

  • UCL Council agreed in December 2002 to submit a DAPS application to the Privy Council and Department for Education and Skills (DfES) in December 2002, and this application was formally submitted in November 2004.
  • A team of auditors/assessors, appointed by the QAA (http://www.qaa.ac.uk/), visited UCL in March 2005 to conduct an Institutional Audit, in combination with scrutiny of UCL's application for taught and research degree-awarding powers (DAPs).