Policy Glossary

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absent without leave (AWOL): A student who is not enrolled in any subjects for a period of twelve months, and who has not had any status changes to subjects on their study plan (eg. change of result or recording of a late result) for a period of twelve months and who has not been granted leave of absence, will be declared ‘absent without leave’.

Academic Board: the Board is a committee of the Council and the principal academic body of the University.

academic freedom means the following:

(a) the freedom of academic staff to teach, discuss, and research and to disseminate and publish the results of their research;

(b) the freedom of academic staff and students to engage in intellectual inquiry, to express their opinions and beliefs, and to contribute to public debate, in relation to their subjects of study and research;

(c) the freedom of academic staff and students to express their opinions in relation to the higher education provider in which they work or are enrolled;

(d) the freedom of academic staff to participate in professional or representative academic bodies

(e) the freedom of students to participate in student societies and associations;

(f) the autonomy of the higher education provider in relation to the choice of academic courses and offerings, the ways in which they are taught and the choices of research activities and the ways in which they are conducted.

academic record: an official statement, issued by authority of the Registrar, of a student’s subject results obtained at the University and showing any credit granted for prior study.

academic status: a status which indicates a coursework student’s academic performance in relation to the Satisfactory Academic Performance requirements considered necessary for satisfactory progress.

academic year: the period beginning on the first day of the first study period of a calendar year and ending on the last day of the last study period of a calendar year.

adjudicator: an additional assessor appointed to examine academic work where consensus has not been reached between the examiners. The adjudicator is frequently external to the University.

admitted: a student is admitted into a course from the time that they accept an offer until the time that the course is completed or until they are withdrawn from the course.

advanced standing: the recognition granted towards meeting the requirements of an award of the University, either on the basis of prior formal study or recognised prior learning.

general advanced standing: advanced standing granted to the value of a specified number of credit points for previous study or recognised prior learning for which there is no precise equivalent at this University.

exempt advanced standing: advanced standing granted in the form of exemption from the requirements of a particular subject for previous study or recognised prior learning which is or similar content and standard as required for a passing grade in that subject.

designated advanced standing: is the same as exempt advanced standing except that the result/s obtained for the completed study are recorded and included in calculations such as the Course Weighted Average.

admission:  the process by which an applicant receives a formal offer of a place in a course from an authorised officer of the University and where the applicant formally accepts that offer.

anti-requisite: where there is significant overlap in content for two or more subjects, they may be defined as 'anti-requisites' for each other. Student will not be able to enrol in, or gain credit for, any subject that is an anti-requisite for one of their existing subjects.

assessment: Assessment is a process used to determine a student’s achievement of expected learning outcomes (AQF 2013 p.92). It includes all forms of assignments and examinations set as part of a program of study. Assessment exercises may be in the form of essays, project reports, laboratory reports, practical work, field trip reports, artistic or creative performances, teaching practice, placements, tutorials, tests or examinations etc.

assignment: a piece of academic work to be completed by a student and submitted for assessment.

assumed knowledge: indicates the minimum level of knowledge for students who are considering enrolling in a subject.   Students who do not have the recommended level of assumed knowledge are not prevented from enrolling but they may be placed at a considerable disadvantage. Students who have not achieved the recommended level of assumed knowledge are strongly advised to undertake additional study or other appropriate preparation. Lack of the recommended assumed knowledge will not be taken into consideration when determining a student's grade or any other subject requirements.

attendance mode:

  • In relation to a course, the following definitions describe the delivery mode on whether a course is undertaken on:
    • an internal (on-campus) basis* (i.e. a maximum of one-third of the subjects of a course are studied via online delivery and may require WIL attendance).
    • an external (online) basis* (i.e. the subjects of a course are studied wholly through online delivery and may require WIL attendance).
    • a mixed-mode (multi-modal) basis* (i.e. the course is studied as a combination of on-campus and online delivery and may require WIL attendance).
  • In relation to a subject, the following definitions apply:
    • external mode (online): subjects studied via external mode are offered via online delivery and require no on-campus attendance for learning activities.  Online delivery is facilitated wholly through the virtual learning environment (e.g. LearnJCU) and may require participation in scheduled online sessions (e.g. blackboard collaborate tutorials).
    • internal mode  (on campus)*: subjects studied via internal mode require regular face-to-face attendance at learning activities over most weeks of a study period and are usually held on campus.  Internal subjects may require embedded placement attendance.
    • intensive mode*: is an intensive study mode.  Subjects studied via intensive mode require attendance in intensive learning activities and may be held on or off campus over a confined time period (e.g. weekend, 5 day or 4 week period).  These subjects may include learning and assessment activities outside of the intensive sessions.
    • mixed attendance mode (multi-modal): subjects studied via mixed attendance mode requires a combination of scheduled physical attendance and scheduled virtual/online attendance for learning activities.
    • placement*/fieldwork (work integrated learning/WIL): subjects studied via placement/fieldwork mode require attendance at an internal or external site for most of the duration of the subject under the professional supervision of the unit or organisation for:
      • authentic or simulated learning,
      • practicum,
      • clinical placement,
      • project or internship
      • placement briefings or tutorials.

    *Every subject irrespective of subject attendance mode has a dedicated virtual learning environment in a LearnJCU site, as per Learning, Teaching and Assessment Policy 7.2, which is expected to meet Student Digital Experience requirements.

Australian Higher Education Graduation Statement (AHEGS): A supplementary statement to the testamur that provides information on a student’s higher education qualification, the institution at which the qualification was obtained, and the Australian higher education system in one easy to read document (Australian Government).

Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF): The AQF is the national policy for regulated qualifications in Australian education and training (AQF 2013, p.9). It comprises different qualification levels. JCU offers courses located between AQF levels 5 and 10.

award: a degree, diploma or certificate contained in the list of approved Awards of James Cook University.

blended learning: refers to learning design that strategically, systematically and effectively integrates a range of face-to-face, online, social and other technology-enhanced learning across physical and virtual environments, as informed and driven by student needs and support for desired learning outcomes and learning activities.

conferred posthumously - an undergraduate or postgraduate coursework Award granted to a student who, at the time of death, had successfully completed the total credit points required for the Award (including credit points awarded by advanced standing) but whose award had not been conferred.

campus transfer – occurs when a continuing University student changes from their current home campus to another campus with no intention of returning to their original home campus.


- in relation to a course,a person enrolled for an award of the University who is pursuing a course of study in accordance with the requirements which apply for the award.

- in relation to an examination, a person who, whether or not that person has lodged an examination entry for the examination, has entered an examination room or the precincts thereof for the purpose of sitting for the examination.

carousel (or carousel calendar): refers to a six-to-seven-week intensive study period. There are six block study periods in a calendar year, and commonly coded SP81, SP82, SP83, SP84, SP85, SP86.

census date: the date on which a student’s enrolment in a subject is taken to be finalised.

certify or certification: refers to endorsement of results

certification documentation: certification documentation is the set of official documents that are issued to a graduate confirming specific details of the awarded qualification and may include testamur, academic record and the Australian Higher Education Graduation Statement (AHEGS).

certified copy: a photocopy of an original document which has been certified by a Justice of the Peace, Commissioner for Declarations, Police Officer or staff member of a tertiary institution, as a true copy of the original document sighted by the certifier. The certification must be original; photocopies or facsimiles of certified copies are not acceptable.

Chancellor: the person who presides at meetings of the University Council, and at graduation ceremonies.

commencing student: a person who has been admitted and enrolled for the first time at the University for a course and whose enrolment for that course has neither lapsed nor been cancelled.

Commonwealth assisted student: a student who is a Commonwealth supported student or who is in receipt of a HELP loan or a Commonwealth Learning Scholarship.

Commonwealth Higher Education Student Support Number (CHESSN): a unique identifier for each student who accesses Commonwealth assistance for higher education.

Commonwealth supported place: a higher education place for which the Commonwealth makes a contribution towards the cost of the student’s education.

Commonwealth supported student: a student who occupies a Commonwealth supported place.

Compassionate and compelling circumstances: circumstances beyond a student’s control which have had, or would have, an impact on a student’s course progress or well-being. These circumstances may include, but are not limited to:

  • serious illness or injury, where a medical certificate or psychologist’s report states that the student was/will be unable to attend classes;
  • bereavement of close family members such as parents or grandparents (where possible a death certificate should be provided);
  • a traumatic experience which has impacted the student, and which is supported by police or psychologists’ reports;
  • unavailability of subjects required for the student to progress in their course;
  • inability to begin studying on the course commencement date due to delay in receiving a student visa; and
  • major political upheaval or natural disaster in the student’s home country.

conferral - The act of granting an Award to a Graduand after successful completion of their course requirements.

continuing student: a person who has been admitted to the University and has been enrolled for a course, whose enrolment for that course has neither lapsed nor been cancelled, and is not a commencing student.

corequisites: two or more subjects that must be undertaken in the same Study Period.

core subject:  a subject which is mandatory in order to complete the prescribed requirements of a course.

Council: the governing body of the University.

course: an approved Higher Education Award of the University, consisting of a combination of subjects the successful completion of which, together with any credit transfers in accordance with the relevant requirements, will fulfil the prescribed requirements for that particular award.

Course coordinator: an academic staff member responsible for providing curriculum leadership within a course.

coursework - the study of a specified set of core units and in some cases a selection of eligible elective units which is not considered higher degree by research.

credit: also known as advanced standing - see definition above.

credit points: a measure of workload; three credit point subjects represent the normal value of a subject at the University although multiples of three credit point subjects are possible. A three-credit point subject represents 25% of a full-time student’s normal workload during a teaching period. Each subject is assigned credit points by the appropriate division.

cross-institutional enrolment:  an enrolment where a student admitted for an Award course at a tertiary education institution is granted approval to enrol in subjects at another tertiary education institution for credit towards the Award at the home institution.

deferral: the approved postponement of commencement of study in a course for a specified period of time.

degree: an award of the University at Bachelor, Master or Doctoral level.

DIBP: the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

diploma:. An award of the University located at level 5 of the AQF and designed to provide foundational study and facilitate pathways to higher learning, see also Graduate Diploma.

DIISRTE: the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education. The majority of higher education functions transferred to the Department of Education in September 2013. Student income support functions (including Austudy and Youth Allowance) transferred to the Department of Social Services.

discipline: an area of study capable of being identified and of being systematically developed eg Geography.

dissertation: a substantive description of the research undertaken for the purpose of obtaining a coursework higher degree (research component less than two-thirds of the degree requirements) together with any associated material that is also subject to examination.

domestic student or applicant:  a student or applicant who is an Australian or New Zealand citizen or an Australian permanent visa holder.

EFTSL (equivalent full-time student load): a value representing the student load for a subject or part of a subject expressed as a proportion of the workload for a standard annual enrolment for a student undertaking a full year of study in a particular year of a particular course.

elective: a subject which is not part of the core subjects of an award, but which may be undertaken as prescribed by the requirements of the course and credited towards that award.

embedded honours - an honours program which is undertaken as part of the undergraduate Bachelors award (as opposed to a graduate honours program which is undertaken subsequent to graduation with an undergraduate Bachelors award).

enrolment: the process whereby an applicant submits an application for enrolment to the University for a year or part of a year. It includes the completion of required documents, the payment of appropriate fees and, for coursework students, the nomination of subjects. Enrolment must be completed at a time specified by the University. Conditions may be imposed on a student’s enrolment.

Enrolment Delegations Schedule:  the register of positions authorised to make decisions on behalf of the University in relation to admissions and enrolments.

examination: a formal assessment by the University of the level of attainment in a particular component of a subject or a complete subject. Examinations are normally written but may be oral or practical. Such examinations are conducted by the University in accordance with the Examination Requirements.

examination script: a booklet provided by the University in which a student records answers to examination questions.

exclusion: termination by the University of a student’s admission to a course and of the right to be re-admitted to that course and in some instances, admitted to any course, of the University.

exit award - an award conferred when students have withdrawn from either an undergraduate or postgraduate degree but have completed a predetermined number of credit points and appropriate subjects as stated in the relevant course document.

faculty/division: the organisation of several schools/colleges into an academic area responsible for the administration of courses. (Faculties were replaced by Divisions, and Schools replaced by Colleges in May 2014)

Faculty Pro-Vice-Chancellor (PVC) or Deputy Vice-Chancellor: the academic officer responsible for the provision of academic and management leadership in all aspects of a faculty/division’s activities. Faculties were replaced by Divisions in April 2014. fee statement: notification to students showing details of their debt to the University.

field trip: an activity which:

  • involves a student’s travel to and work at a place or places away from the University; and
  • relates to, and is a requirement for a course being undertaken by the student at the University; and
  • is carried out under the general control of a University staff member.

frivolous: a complaint, review or appeal is deemed to be frivolous if it is one that is of little merit and has no serious purpose.

full-time student: a student who has enrolled for 18 or more credit points in one academic year. A normal full-time load is 24 credit points spread over an academic year. A student enrolled for 9 or more credit points in a teaching period may be classified as full-time for that teaching period.

formal learning is the learning that takes place through a structured program of learning that leads to the full or partial achievement of an officially accredited qualification.

grade point average: is a calculation of average subject grade or result.  Each subject for which a grade has been awarded is included in the calculation. A Grade Point Average (GPA) will be higher where a student has achieved higher grades.  Subjects which have a higher credit point value carry proportionately more weight than subjects with a lower credit point value.

graduand: a candidate who has fulfilled the requirements of an award but has not yet had the Award conferred.

graduate: a person who has had an award conferred following the completion of a defined course of study.

Graduate Certificate: An AQF level 8 qualification designed to qualify individuals who apply a body of knowledge in a range of contexts to undertake professional or highly skilled work as a pathway for further learning (AQF 2013, p.53).

Graduate Diploma: An AQF level 8 qualification designed to qualify individuals who apply a body of knowledge in a range of contexts to undertake professional or highly skilled work as a pathway for further learning (AQF 2013, p.57).

GS – Genuine Student -All applicants for a Student visa must show they are coming to Australia temporarily to gain a quality education.

higher degree by research: an Award at Master or Doctoral level located at AQF levels 9 or 10.

Higher Education Loans Program (HELP): a Commonwealth Government loan program to help eligible students pay student contributions (HECS-HELP), tuition fees (FEE-HELP) and overseas study expenses (OS-HELP).

home campus – means the campus at which a student commenced their course.

home campus tuition fee amount – means the tuition fees paid by the student to their Home Campus for the period of their Intercampus Mobility.

Honours degree: Bachelor Honours Degree qualifications are undergraduate qualifications located at level 8 of the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF). Graduates at this level will have advanced knowledge and skills for professional or highly skilled work and/or further learning (AQF explanations 2013 p.5).

host campus - the campus at which the student will undertake their Intercampus Mobility.

host campus tuition fee amount –the tuition fees that would have been paid by the student at their Host Campus had they transferred to the Host Campus at the time they commenced the Intercampus Mobility.

Human rights: The Human Rights Act (QLD) 2019 Part 2 describes human rights in Queensland. Some rights listed within the Act apply to JCU’s operation as a higher education provider.  Complaints can be received under various Policies, including staff grievance procedures and the Student Complaints Policy, and will be assessed by the University to determine whether a human right was breached or limited contrary to the Act.

IELTS: International English Language Testing System. IELTS is an international standardised test of English language proficiency.

inadmissible combinations: two or more subjects with substantially overlapping content where enrolment in and credit for may be given in respect of a single subject and only once towards the same course.

inbound mobility – includes students attending the University under a cross-institutional, study abroad, or exchange arrangement to complete individual subjects that do not lead to an award at the University.

informal learning: is learning gained through experience in work-related, social, family, hobby or leisure activities.

intake period:  the period of time for which an offer of place is made, and during which a successful applicant who has not deferred must commence their studies.

intercampus mobility – the period of study where a student remains admitted to their original JCU campus and undertakes part of their course of study at a JCU Campus overseas.

international student or applicant: a student or applicant who is not a domestic student.

invigilated assessment:  assessment conducted in such a way that a member of staff of the University or a nominee acting on behalf of the University is thoroughly satisfied that the student is the author (including creator) of the work submitted for assessment.

Authorship may be assured in different ways, for example, by the assessor:

1. ensuring that the work was completed by the student in a properly supervised examination, test or similar formal assessment,

2. monitoring draft versions of the work presented by the student on a regular basis and interacting with the student in ways which would eliminate the possibility that an impostor was producing the work,

3. questioning or examining the student orally to ensure the skills, knowledge, understanding and values of the student are consistent with those illustrated in the work submitted for assessment.

4. comparing the nature and quality of the skills, knowledge, understanding and values illustrated by the student with work completed under conditions described in 1.

JCU Student Association Advocate: A JCU Student Association (JCUSA) Advocate is any staff member of the JCUSA who the JCUSA designates as an Advocate.

joint degree:  an Award comprising the combination of two separate degrees.

Leadership is defined for Academic Promotions as:

a. internal leadership inclusive of:

  • strategic leadership: setting direction within the University,
  • intellectual leadership: creation of new directions and the construction of leading ideas,
  • innovative leadership: creation of novel concepts along with courageous risk-taking,
  • resource leadership: effective building and management of the University’s infrastructure, people and other resources, and
  • sustainable leadership: long-term achievement and succession management.

b. external leadership: consisting of mutually beneficial partnerships with society outside the University, inclusive of local communities, national collaborations, international collaborations and partnerships with relevant government, industry, professional and other relevant bodies including generation of external income.

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 (AQF 2013 p.97).

Learn JCU: Learn JCU is a web-based Learning Management System that provides student access to important learning and teaching resources including subject information and online learning activities.

leave of absence (LOA):  an approved period of leave from a course of study. For research students, this is also referred to as ‘suspension of candidature’.

liability category:  the type of fees payable by a student, such as ‘Domestic Tuition Fees’, ‘International Tuition Fees’ or ‘Commonwealth Supported’.

major: an approved sequence of subjects in a discipline or cognate group of disciplines. A major forms part of a course structure and may be included in undergraduate or postgraduate courses eg BSc in Ecology.

Masters degree by coursework: An AQF level 9 qualification designed so that graduates will have undertaken a program of structured learning with some independent research, and project work or practice-related learning. The purpose of the Masters Degree (Coursework) is to qualify individuals who apply an advanced body of knowledge in a range of contexts for professional practice or scholarship and as a pathway for further learning (AQF 2013, p.59).

Masters degree by research: The Masters Degree (Research) is an AQF level 9 qualification designed so that graduates will have undertaken supervised study and research of which two thirds will be devoted to research, research training and independent study. The purpose of the Masters Degree (Research) is to qualify individuals who apply an advanced body of knowledge in a range of contexts for research and scholarship and as a pathway for further learning (AQF 2013 p.59).

medical certificate: a certificate signed by a registered medical practitioner. Other than in extraordinary circumstances, the University will not accept a medical certificate which has been signed by a person who is a close associate or near relative of the patient. The University will only accept original certificates or a certified copy of an original.

minor:  an approved sequence of subjects in a discipline or cognate group of disciplines. A minor has a lesser number of credit points than a major, may only be taken in conjunction with a major, forms part of a course structure and may be included in undergraduate or postgraduate courses.

miscellaneous student:  a candidate enrolled in one or more subjects but not in a course.

non-award course:  a course offered by the University for which no Award is conferred upon successful completion.

non-formal learning is learning completed through a structured program of instruction which does not lead to the attainment of a formal qualification (for example: In-house professional development programs conducted by an employer, education by professional associations, product courses and unaccredited structured training).

Offer – a written offer of a place in a course or non-Award course of study made by the University to an eligible prospective student.

outbound mobility – includes:

  • student temporarily attending another institution other than the University under a cross institutional, study abroad, exchange arrangement to complete individual subjects;
  • students moving to another University campus for a short period of time with the intention of returning to their home campus; or

students permanently transferring to another University campus.

Overall Position (OP):  the score obtained by Queensland Year 12 students upon completion of their studies.

overseas campus – a campus in a country other than the country of the student’s Home Campus.

Partner – A third party organisation who is authorised under a written agreement, to provide enrolment and admission functions for the University.

part-time student: a student who has enrolled for fewer than 18 credit points in one academic year. A student enrolled for fewer than 9 credit points in a teaching period may be classified as part-time for that teaching period.

Plagiarism: reproduction without acknowledgement of another person’s words, work or expressed thoughts from any source. The definition of words, works and thoughts include such representations as diagrams, drawings, sketches, pictures, objects, text, lecture hand-outs, artistic works and other such expressions of ideas, but hereafter the term ‘work’ is used to embrace all of these. Plagiarism comprises not only direct copying of aspects of another person’s work but also the reproduction, even if slightly rewritten or adapted, of someone else’s ideas. In both cases, someone else’s work is presented as the student’s own. Under the Australian Copyright Act 1968 a copyright owner can take legal action in the courts against a party who has infringed their copyright.

postgraduate: of, or pertaining to, a higher level course generally undertaken following completion of a Bachelor or Bachelor with Honours degree. Postgraduate courses include the Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma, Master of Philosophy, Masters by Research, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and named Professional Doctorates.

Posthumous Award - an undergraduate or postgraduate Award granted to a student who, at the time of death, had successfully completed a minimum of 66% of the total credit points required for the Award (including credit points awarded by advanced standing) and who would have successfully completed the course of study had death not occurred.

prerequisite: a subject or a set of conditions which must be met before enrolment in a subject or admission to a course is approved.

Procedural fairness: Procedural fairness is concerned with the procedures used by a decision-maker, rather than the decision that the decision-maker reached. It requires fair and transparent processes be used when making a decision. These processes will include:

  • The right to be heard;
  • The right to be treated without bias; and
  • A decision is based on reliable, relevant and sufficient evidence.

professional placement: Is a clinical or practical education experience, which is a required component of a Course, in a Facility that may be on campus or off-campus. It may also be known as professional practice, work-placement, work experience, practicum, internship, clinical experience, clinical placement, student placement

program: a set combination of subjects which comprises an entire course structure. Completion of this set combination of subjects is compulsory in order to fulfil the award requirements. The term ‘program’ can be used in conjunction with courses at any level.

PRISMS: Provider Registration and International Students Management System.

psychologist’s certificate: a certificate signed by a registered psychologist. Other than in extraordinary circumstances, the University will not accept a psychologist certificate which has been signed by a person who is a close associate or near relative of the patient. The University will only accept original certificates or a certified copy of an original.

quota: a limit set by the University on the number of students who may be admitted to a course or subject in a particular year.

ratify or ratification: refers to the expression of approval of results

re-enrolment: the process by which continuing students complete re-enrolment procedures for the following year and pay the appropriate fees. Re-enrolment must be completed at a time specified by the University.

research: Research comprises systematic experimental and theoretical work, application and/or development that results in the increase in the dimensions of knowledge (AQF 2013 p.100).

revoke:  to formally withdraw an Award conferred by the University.

school/college: a unit of academic organisation within a faculty, usually containing several disciplines which have related teaching and research responsibilities activities. Schools were replaced by Colleges in May 2014.

selection rank:  the score assigned to non-immediate Queensland Year 12 students to reflect their qualifications and work experience.

Self Plagiarism: the use of one’s own previously assessed material being resubmitted without acknowledgement or citing of the original.

semester: refers to a 13-week study period. There are two semesters in a calendar year. They are commonly coded SP1 and SP2.

sponsor: an individual or organisation which is formally registered by the University as responsible for the payment of tuition fees for a named student or specific group of students.

student: a person who has been admitted to the University and has enrolled for a course or a subject, and whose enrolment for that course or for that subject has not lapsed or been cancelled. (See also commencing student and continuing student.)

student academic misconduct: any improper action taken by a student to gain an advantage when having academic work assessed.Students are referred to the University’s policy on Student Academic Misconduct.

Academic Misconduct includes:

  • cheating in an examination;
  • plagiarism;
  • falsification of research results;
  • falsification of an academic record;
  • any other acts or omissions not included in the above which in the opinion of the Chair of the Academic Board reasonably represent Academic Misconduct.

student debtor – a student who is a debtor as defined in the Student Debtors – Penalties Policy (FMPM 270-2).

student learning entitlement (SLE): an entitlement introduced by HESA on 1/1/2005 and abolished 1/1/2012 that gave eligible students access to a Commonwealth supported place. There were three types of SLE: ordinary SLE, additional SLE and lifelong SLE.

student load: student load is expressed in EFTSL (equivalent full-time student load) values.

study guide: this (i) provides students with detailed directions about everything they need to do in sequence and time frames in order to achieve the intended learning outcomes for the subject, and (ii) describes to local tutors the work students must do in order that tutors can assist students to achieve the learning outcomes.

study period: refers to the period of time in which a subject is undertaken. Each study period has a designated start and end date, census date, last date by which students can add or substitute subjects, date for withdrawal without academic penalty, and date for release of subject results. In exceptional circumstances, the start and end date of a study period may vary for an individual subject.

subject: a discrete portion of a course, identified by a code, title and credit point value.

Subject coordinator: an academic staff member who is responsible for the content, delivery and assessment of a subject. The name of the subject coordinator for each subject is given in the subject outline for that subject. Subject outlines can be found on LearnJCU.

Subject outline: a critical resource for students detailing the subject description and learning outcomes, consultation and contact details, learning resources, how performance in the subject will be assessed and other general assessment expectations and penalties.

Support person: A person who supports a complainant, reviewee or appellant through a complaint, review or appeal process, including attending meetings, and may be a JCU Student Association Advocate, staff member, student, friend, relative, disability advocate or cultural support person.

suspension of candidature: an approved period of leave from a research course.  Also referred to as ‘leave of absence’.

teaching location:  the campus or centre at which teaching takes place.

teaching period: refers to the academic calendar year divided into two Teaching Periods (TP). Teaching Period 1 is the first six months of the year and Teaching Period 2 is the second six months of the year. Subjects with a census date prior to 1 July are classified as Teaching Period 1 subjects, and subjects with a census date on or after 1 July are classified as Teaching Period 2 subjects. Under the trimester system, Trimesters One and Two are included in Teaching Period 1 and Trimester Three is included in Teaching Period 2.

TEQSA: The Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) regulates and assures the quality of Australia’s higher education sector.

termination: the cancellation by the University of a student’s enrolment.

testamur: the official document signed by the Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor and the University Secretary as confirmation of the conferral of an award.

Thesis: (1) a substantive description of the research undertaken for the purpose of obtaining the degree, or (2) a critical interpretation of creative work, together with any associated material that is also subject to examination.

TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language. TOEFL is an academic English language test for international students.

trimester: refers to a 10-week study period. Trimesters are comprised of three equal study periods of 10 weeks in a calendar year. They are commonly coded TR1, TR2, and TR3.

Trivial: A complaint, review or appeal is deemed to be trivial if it is of little value, or the complaint does not show that the complainant has suffered a significant injustice.

undergraduate: of or pertaining to courses of study offered for a Bachelor degree, Bachelor Honours degree, Advanced Diploma or Diploma.

University community: University community means the members of the Council, the Staff, the Students and Affiliates of the University, as well as those, who use the University's campuses or facilities for work, study, living and socialising, or other authorised activity.

University Secretary: the member of staff who is Secretary to the Council of the University and Academic Board.

University working day: University working day means a day other than a Saturday or Sunday, or a public holiday, Vice-Chancellor declared University holiday or a day of closure of a university campus for an operational reason (for example, an industrial agreement provision or natural disaster response) in the place or places in which an act or event (including the making of a determination or decision) is to be done under this Policy.

Vexatious: A complaint, review or appeal is deemed to be vexatious when it is made to harass or annoy, to cause delay or detriment, or for another wrongful purpose, or is made without reasonable ground.

Vice-Chancellor: the chief executive officer of the University.

withdrawal: the formal cessation by a student of enrolment from a subject or course. Depending upon the timing, the withdrawal may appear on an academic record as a “withdrawal without failure” or as a “failure”.

Modification History

Version no.

Implementation date



24-1 04/03/2024 Amendments made to definitions of Attendance Modes, Study period, Teaching period, and Trimester, and added definition for Semester and Carousel. DVC Education
23-1 03/10/2023 Administrative amendment to move Academic Promotions-related definition from HR Policy Glossary as is no longer under HR domain. NA - administrative
21-3 15/12/2021 Addition of terms arising from review of Student Results Policy and various procedures. DVC Students
21-2 03/08/2021 Addition of several terms arising from review of Student Complaints Policy and Procedures. DVC Students
21-1 26/02/2021 Addition of term; Professional Placement DVC Students
20-1 30/10/2020 Addition of term 'academic freedom' in line with the HESA amendment (Freedom of Speech) Bill. Chief of Staff
19-4 09/12/2019

Addition of definitions associated with review of Admissions Policy and Procedure


DVC Students
19-3 28/10/2019

Amendment to definitions associated with review of enrolment policy and procedures

  • Campus Transfer
  • Coursework
  • Home Campus
  • Home Campus Tuition Fee Amount
  • Host Campus
  • Host Campus Tuition Fee Amount
  • Inbound Mobility
  • Intercampus Mobility
  • Outbound Mobility
  • Overseas Campus
  • Student Debtor
DVC Students
19-2 07/08/2019 Addition of term 'carousel calendar' arising from establishment of Student Fee Payments and Refunds Policy and related procedures. DVC Students
19-1 01/03/2019 Amendment to definitions of attendance mode Provost



Addition of definitions arising from establishment of Award Finalisation and Graduation Policy and associated procedures:

Definitions added: posthumous award, awarded posthumously, in absentia, conferral, embedded honours, exit award, certification documentation, revoke

Amendment and removal of definitions arising from the amendments to the Academic Progressions Policy and associated procedures:

Definitions amended: academic status.

Definitions removed: at risk, show cause, statement of reason

Amendment of Student Learning Entitlement (SLE) definition to confirm abolition on 1/1/2012.




Definitions for formal, informal and non-formal learning added and definition of plagiarism amended and definition of self-plagiarism added – approved by Academic Board 10/11/2014




Roles amended to reflect organization restructure




Addition to, and amendment of a number of definitions as approved at Academic Board on 5/5/2014




Addition of: DIISRTE: the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education




Addition of definitions relating to medical certificate and psychologist's certificate




Changes to definitions relating to advanced standing and credit.




Changes to terms relating to attendance mode and the Leave of Absence from Study policy.




Changes to terms following implementation of Academic Progression Policy on 5/11/2007.







Changes to terms following approval of Admissions Policy at University Council on 22/03/2007