Diploma Supplement

Record of Academic Achievement

The Diploma Supplement is issued by the University of Northampton and it follows the model developed by the European Commissions, the Council of Europe and UNESCO/CEPES. The purpose of the supplement is to provide sufficient independent data to improve international transparency and fair academic and professional recognition of qualifications (diplomas, degrees, certificates etc). It is designed to provide a description of the nature, level, context, content and status of studies that were undertaken and successfully completed by the individual named on the original qualification. It should be free from any value judgements, equivalence statements or suggestions about recognition.

Students who successfully complete their studies are issued with a certificate and transcript of studies. The transcript of studies has a link to this diploma supplement.

  • Information identifying the holder of the qualification are shown on the transcript of studies:

    • Family name(s)
    • Given name(s)
    • Date of birth (day/month/year)
    • Student identification number

    The student identification number is shown is the unique identification number for a student registered at The University of Northampton or one of its partner or affiliated institutions.

    Also shown in this section is the HESA reference, if relevant.  This is a unique national identification number from the Higher Education Statistics Agency in the UK.

    • Name of course studies and the title conferred
    • Main field(s) of study for the qualification
    • Name of the awarding institution (in original language)
    • Name of institution administering studies if different from the awarding institution (in original language)

    All or some of the students at the following partner organisations follow degree or other programmes of study validated by the University as leading to one of its academic awards. These institutions are recognised by the UK authorities as being able to offer courses leading to a degree of a recognised body such as the University.

    A list of Partner institutions is available on our Collaborative Provisions page.

    For students at these institutions who have been awarded a degree or other academic award of the University of Northampton, the certificate and transcript of studies is provided by the University.

    Language of instruction/examination

    The language of instruction and assessment for all programmes of study leading to an award of the University of Northampton is English unless otherwise approved by Senate. An example of such an exception is when the subject or programme of study is another language.

  • Level of qualification

    Information about the University’s undergraduate and taught postgraduate programmes can be found on our Policies, Procedures and Regulations page. Please select the Academic and Supplementary Regulations for the relevant year. Information can be found in the Academic Regulations document, in section two.

    • Mode of study
    • Programme requirements

    The University publishes the learning outcomes of its programme and its individual modules in the Programme and Module Specifications can be found on our Programme and Module Specifications page.

    • Programme details (modules or units studied and individual grades/credits obtained
    • Grading Scheme and, if available, grade distribution and guidance

    Full details of the University’s grading and awarding arrangements are published in the University’s framework regulations. Most University of Northampton awards are covered by the University’s modular framework (UMF). The regulations are available on our Policies, Procedures, and Regulations page.

    The University’s classification arrangements are designed to be consistent with the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) framework for higher education qualifications in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, taking due account of the relationship between assessment arrangements and programme learning outcomes. The classification systems are based on averaging the grades obtained across a defined cross section of modules from the programme for the award concerned, with the grades being weighted in line with the credit value of the modules concerned. The classification systems are operated for undergraduate and postgraduate awards are described in the regulations for the University’s Framework.

    Award and Classification
    • A student’s eligibility for an award is determined on the basis of their:
    • meeting the requirements of the relevant regulations i.e. obtaining sufficient credits at the appropriate level(s) in the prescribed manner
    • meeting the requirements of the Programme Specification concerned to satisfy the programme outcomes through passing all compulsory and sufficient optional/elective modules
    • through achieving a ‘Classification Average’ or ‘Award Average’ grade, calculated as the average (weighted mean) of the grades achieved in the requisite defined cross-section of those modules taken in their relevant programme year(s), which is equal to or greater than the prescribed minimum Classification/Award Average pass grade.

    The ‘Classification Average/Award Average’ mark obtained determines any classification of the award in accordance with the information on classification of awards in the relevant regulations available on our Policies, Procedures and Regulations page.

    Overall Classification of the qualification (in original language)

    The overall classification of the qualification is shown on the transcript of studies.

  • Access to Further Study

    A Masters degree of the University gives access to postgraduate research (Doctoral) programmes.

    A Bachelors degree of the University normally with a second class honours or above gives access to taught postgraduate study.

  • Candidates for the University’s awards who have been awarded credit relating to certain courses of study, either at The University of Northampton or at another approved educational establishment, or who are able to evidence significant experiential learning, may be eligible for special consideration under the policies and procedures for credit accumulation and transfer for the granting of exemption from modules. Where applicable, such study exemptions are shown on the transcript of studies.

    A top-up degree is the equivalent to the final year of undergraduate study, resulting in a Bachelors level qualification. These programmes enable you to ‘top-up’ an existing qualification, whether that’s a Foundation degree or another relevant qualification, like an HND.  The 120 credits at level 6 which form the top-up degree are stand alone. The underpinning 240 credits are an admissions entry requirement, regardless whether the underpinning credit is achieved at the University of Northampton or with another provider. It is expected that the students would present documentation for both awards together to demonstrate the 360 credits achieved.

    A Masters level top up is worth 60 credits.  The 60 credits at level 7 are stand alone. The underpinning 120 credits are an admissions entry requirement, regardless whether the underpinning credit is achieved at the University of Northampton or with another provider. It is expected that the students would present documentation for both awards together to demonstrate the 180 level 7 credits achieved.

    Programmes of study may include requirements for substantial study or work experience (industrial placements) outside the University which may be reflected in the programme title as detailed in the award information and/or identified in the other information given in the transcript of studies.

    Where modules contributing to an award of the University have been taken under the University’s arrangements for collaborative programmes (i.e. programmes offered jointly with other universities and colleges) these modules and the location of studies are identified in the transcript of studies.

    Graduates of the University of Northampton are encouraged to participate in a range of extracurricular activities designed to develop the skills required to be active agents within the job market.

    Graduates will be able to provide examples of the activities they undertook and will include work experience, part time jobs, volunteering, involvement with community activities, and engagement with the students’ union. In addition, the graduate may have experienced overseas learning opportunities, and engagement with other employers that has broadened their understanding of the work place. The University will not be able to verify these activities.

    Additional information relating to the University of Northampton and not covered in these webpages can be obtained from University of Northampton’s website.

  • Description of Higher Education in England, Wales and Northern Ireland

    In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, Higher Education institutions are independent, self-governing bodies active in teaching, research and scholarship and established by Royal Charter or legislation.

    Higher Education (HE) is provided by many different types of institution. In addition to universities and university colleges, whose Charters and statues are made through the Privy Council which advises the Queen on the granting of Royal Charters and incorporation of universities, there are a number of publicly-designated and autonomous institutions with the higher education sector.

     Degree awarding powers and the title ‘university’

    All the universities and many of the higher education colleges have legal power to develop their own courses and award their own degrees, and determine the conditions on which they are awarded. All universities in existence before 2005 have the power to award degrees on the basis of completion of taught courses and the power to award research degrees. From 2005, institutions in England and Wales that award only taught degrees and which meet certain numerical criteria, may also be permitted to use the title ‘university’. Higher education institutions that award only taught degrees but which do not meet the numerical criteria may apply to use the title ‘university college’ although not all choose to do so.

    All of these institutions are subject to the same regulatory quality assurance and funding requirements as universities; and all institutions decide for themselves which students to admit and which staff to appoint.

    Degrees and other higher education qualifications are legally owned by the awarding institution, not by the state.


    The types of qualifications are awarded by higher education institutions at sub-degree and undergraduate (first cycle) and postgraduate level (second and third cycles) are described in the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications  (FHEQ) including qualification descriptions, developed with the sector by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA – established in 1997 as an independent UK-wide body to monitor the standard of higher education provision – ).

    Quality Assurance

    Academic standards are established and maintained by higher education institutions themselves using an extensive and sophisticated range of shared quality assurance approaches and structures. Standards and quality in institutions are underpinned by universal sue of external examiners, a standard set of indicators and other reports and the activities of the QAA and in professional areas by relevant Professional and Statutory Bodies. This ensures that institutions meet national expectations described in the FHEQ: subject benchmark (character) statements, the Code of Practice and a system of programme specifications, QAA conducts peer-review based audits and reviews of higher education institutions with the opportunity for subject-based review as the need arises. Accuracy and adequacy of quality-related information published by the higher education institutions is also reviewed.

    Credit Systems

    Many institutions use credit points for students transferring between programmes or institutions and use European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) for transfers within the European area and to recognise learning gained by students on exchange visits with institutions elsewhere in Europe.


    The most common qualification for entry to higher education is the General Certificate of Education at ‘Advanced’ (A)-level (including the ‘advanced supplementary’).

    Other qualifications for entry are the Advanced Vocational Certificate of Education, the kite-marked Access Certificate or other qualifications located in the National Qualification Framework (NQF) level 3 Advanced, or the equivalent, according to the Credit and Qualifications Framework in Wales, including the Welsh Baccalaureate and qualifications in the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework.

    A-levels are normally taken by students in their 13th year of school or at a college of further education and comprise up to three or four specialist subjects studied in considerable depth, involving coursework and final examination. Part-time and mature students may enter with these qualifications or alternatives with evidenced equivalent prior learning and experience.

    Institutions will admit students whom they believe to have the potential to complete their programmes successfully and set their requirements for entry to particular programmes accordingly.

  • To view a diagram of higher education qualification levels in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, please visit the NARIC website.

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