SAC level 3 and above

Qualifications and courses

On this page:

This page sets out the information the TEC requires from a tertiary education organisation (TEO) to approve a qualification or course as eligible for funding for Student Achievement Component (SAC) for provision at level 3 and above on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF) (for this website page, referred to as SAC3+).  It also sets out the requirements for having those qualifications or courses approved for students to access student allowances and the Student Loan Scheme.

Process for approving a qualification for access to funding

When submitting a new qualification, we recommend that a TEO:

  • considers whether a qualification aligns with the strategic direction outlined in the TEO's Investment Plan, and the Tertiary Education Strategy
  • considers whether the qualification meets the eligibility criteria for SAC3+ funding
  • completes external quality assurance body requirements in a timely manner (this will ensure that each student who is enrolled in the approved qualification will have timely access to student allowances and the Student Loan Scheme, if eligible).

If the qualification requires approval from an external quality assurance body, the TEO must ensure the documentation is provided to us when it submits the information specified below through the Services for Tertiary Education Organisations (STEO) website.  Please see the SDR Manual for more information.

When we receive the necessary information from the TEO, we will decide whether or not the qualification meets the eligibility criteria for SAC3+ funding.  A TEO must only use SAC3+ funding for approved qualifications (see Condition SAC3+/005). 

Information about qualifications

To enable us to determine whether or not to approve a qualification as eligible for SAC3+ funding, we require the following information when the qualification is submitted for approval through the STEO website:

  • the provider code (EDUMIS number) of the TEO seeking the approval
  • if the qualification leads to a certificate or diploma listed on NZQF, the qualification code used in the NZQF
  • the title of the proposed qualification
  • the number of learning hours each week in the qualification
  • the number of full-time teaching weeks each year required to complete the qualification
  • the equivalent full-time student (EFTS) value of the qualification calculated using the following methods:
    • credits
    • learning hours
    • full-time weeks
  • approval documents from the relevant quality assurance body
  • course definition information
  • the component courses of the qualification, including (for example):
    • the EFTS factor of the course
    • the course code or unique local identifier of the course
    • the course classification
    • the funding category of the course.

We will not backdate approval for access to student allowances and the Student Loan Scheme. We require this information at least four weeks before the start of tuition for the qualification. This will ensure that each student who is enrolled in an approved course or programme can access financial support if eligible.

A detailed description of the required information is set out below.

TEO/Provider code

The TEO must give us the four-digit code assigned by the Ministry of Education to uniquely identify the TEO.  A list of the four-digit codes assigned to each TEO is set out in Appendix 1 to the SDR Manual.

Qualification code

Before we can approve a qualification as eligible for SAC3+ funding, the TEO must supply the qualification code.  The format of the qualification code is alphanumeric, usually two letters followed by four numbers.  The two letters are a standard code, for example NZ (New Zealand Certificate), ND (National Diploma), or PC (PTEs).

If a TEO offers a New Zealand Certificate, National Certificate or National Diploma on the NZQF, it should use the same code that is used for the NZQF for all references to the qualification.

Title of qualification

The TEO must give us the title of the qualification for which it is seeking approval.

Duration

Learning hours

A learning hour or a full-time week of learning includes:

  • lecturer and tutor contact hours, including workshops and tutorials
  • tests and assignments
  • supervised practical placements
  • study time
  • self-directed learning with tutorial support available
  • exam periods.

In relation to the number of learning hours in the qualification, the TEO must give us all of the following information:

  • the number of teaching hours each week
  • the number of hours each week of work experience
  • the number of self-directed learning hours
  • the total number of learning hours each week
  • the total number of learning hours in each year
  • the number of years it will take to complete the qualification
  • the total number of learning hours in the qualification (number of learning hours in each year multiplied by the number of years).

Full-time teaching week

A full-time week of learning is known as a teaching or tuition week (and includes the type of learning outlined above).  

In relation to the number of teaching weeks in each year of the qualification, the TEO must give us all of the following information:

  • the number of full-time equivalent teaching weeks
  • the number of weeks of recess in each year
  • the total number of full-time teaching weeks and recess weeks in each year (FTE gross)
  • the number of credits on the NZQF contained in the qualification
  • the number of credits that a student must achieve each year to complete the qualification.

We generally will not approve a qualification for funding that is longer than 34 weeks in a year, although we may fund an individual student’s enrolment for more than 1.0 EFTS in a year.  See Accelerated Learning on the Enrolment page for more information.

EFTS value of qualification

We require the EFTS value of each qualification in order to determine eligibility for SAC3+ funding.  The EFTS value determines the workload involved in each qualification and is required so that we can appropriately fund a TEO to deliver each approved qualification. 

We require this information to be determined using the following methods:

  • credits
  • learning hours
  • full-time weeks.

Each of the three methods should produce the same result.  If they do, we can be confident that a student who is studying for a qualification is undertaking a normal and reasonable workload.

The EFTS value of each qualification must be specified to not more than four decimal places.

Each method is set out in more detail below.

Credits

A credit measures the average amount of learning that is required to complete the qualification or part of the qualification. 

The EFTS value can be calculated using the credits method by dividing the number of credits for the qualification by 120 (the standard number of credits that equate to one full-time year of study). 

Example: If a qualification has 60 credits: 60 divided by 120 = 0.5 EFTS.

Learning hours

The EFTS value can be calculated using the learning hours method by dividing the qualification's total learning hours by 1,200 (the standard number of learning hours that equates to a full-time year).

Example: If the total learning hours for one semester in a qualification is 600 hours: 600 divided by 1,200 = 0.5 EFTS.

Learning hours include:

  • lecturer and tutor contact hours, including workshops and tutorials
  • completion of tests and assignments
  • supervised practical placements
  • study time
  • self-directed learning with tutorial support available
  • exam periods.

We expect that an undergraduate qualification will equate to approximately 1,200 learning hours in a year.  If the number of learning hours is greater than 1,200, the additional student learning hours should be matched by an appropriate number of extra teaching hours.

Full-time weeks

The EFTS value can be calculated using the full-time weeks method, by dividing the length of tuition for the qualification in weeks by 34 (the standard number of weeks that equate to one full-time equivalent teaching or tuition year). 

Example: If the qualification has a length of 17 weeks: 17 divided by 34 = 0.5 EFTS.

EFTS value when qualification has strands

A qualification may have a range of options or electives with variable credit combinations. These are called strands.  Each strand is likely to have a different total EFTS value.

If a qualification has two or more strands, a TEO should determine the EFTS value for each strand.  We require the EFTS value of the strand that has the highest EFTS value for our calculations.

A TEO must calculate the EFTS factor of each course in the strand in order to calculate the EFTS value of the strand. The EFTS factor of a course can be determined in the following ways:

  • dividing the course credits for a qualification that has up to 120 credits by 120
  • for a qualification that has more than 120 credits and the TEC has agreed to fund more than 1 EFTS per year (see Condition SAC3+012), dividing the course credits by the credit value of the qualification, or
  • for a qualification that has more than 120 credits, and the TEC has not agreed to fund more than 1 EFTS per year, by dividing the course credits by 120.

Example:

Calculating the EFTS value of a qualification with strands

Strand 1    

Credits 

Course EFTS factor 

Strand 2

Credits 

Course EFTS factor

Course 1  

15 

0.1250 

Course 1  

15 

0.1250

Course 2  

15 

0.1250 

Course 2  

15

 0.1250

Course 3  

26 

0.2167

Course 3

 26 

0.2167

Course 4  

10 

0.0833 

Course 6  

10 

0.0833

Course 5  

0.0500

Course 7  

0.0417

Course 8 

0.0333

Totals 

72 

 0.6000 

75 

0.6250

In this example, if the TEC approves the qualification for funding, it will be approved as 75 credits as this is the credit value of the longest strand.  The EFTS value of the qualification is therefore 0.625 (75 credits/120 = 0.625 EFTS).

If a qualification that has a value of 1.0 EFTS has more than 120 credits, the credit value of the longest strand is used to determine the course EFTS factors for each strand.  This ensures that courses common to both strands have the same EFTS factor.

Example: In this example, the credit value of 150 is used to divide the credits, not 120:

Calculating course EFTS factors in a qualification of more than 120 credits in one year with strands

Strand 1    

Credits 

Course EFTS factor 

Strand 2

Credits 

Course EFTS factor

Course 1  

30 

0.2000 

Course 1  

30

0.2000

Course 2  

30

0.2000

Course 2  

30

0.2000

Course 3  

52 

0.3467

Course 3

52 

0.3467

Course 4  

20 

0.1333 

Course 6  

20

0.1333

Course 5  

12

0.0800

Course 7  

10

0.0667

Course 8 

8

0.0533

Totals 

144

 0.9600 

150 

1.0000

EFTS value of a doctorate

The maximum EFTS value for a doctorate is usually 4 EFTS. 

However, a TEO may ask us to approve funding for a doctorate that has a value of 5 EFTS if the nature of the research means that the student cannot complete the programme of study within the time period reflected by 4 EFTS. WE will take into account whether the TEO is able to further rmanage the student's study to ensure it fits within 4 EFTS; for example, by putting the student's registration on hold until a more suitable time. 

Studying integrated programmes

An integrated programme of study may lead to two qualifications, such as a double degree. For an integrated programme of study, the EFTS value is based on the total credits, less any overlap between the two qualifications.  If there are a variety of approaches, the TEO should negotiate the EFTS value with us.

Extra courses within a qualification

If an extra course within a qualification is optional for a student, the extra course will usually qualify for additional SAC3+ funding.

In these circumstances, a student’s enrolment may generate more than 1 EFTS in a 12-month period, for example:

  • a student takes an additional course in an academic year towards a qualification that requires more than one year of study
  • a student takes an optional summer school course towards the qualification, or
  • a student takes a separate foundation course that does not earn credits towards a qualification but runs in parallel to the mainstream programme of study.  This arises where the course enables the student to gain the background knowledge and skills necessary to complete the qualification in the normal period.

If an extra course becomes the norm for all students undertaking a qualification, we will consider the change a significant change to a qualification that requires approval from a quality assurance body, and the TEC (see below).

Quality assurance requirements

To be eligible for SAC3+ funding, a course must be part of a programme or training scheme that has been quality assured.  For universities, the quality assurance body is the Committee on University Academic Programmes (CUAP), for all other TEOs that receive SAC3+ funding, it is the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA).

To determine whether to approve a qualification for SAC3+ funding as part of a TEO's mix of provision in its Investment Plan we require:

  • a description of the relevant quality approval body
  • evidence that the relevant quality assurance body has approved each course in the qualification.

The New Zealand Teachers Council is responsible for conducting, in conjunction with quality assurance agencies, approvals of teacher education programmes and qualifications that lead to teacher registration.

Definition information

The TEO must give us the following information that defines the course:

  • the award category (recognised qualifications are awarded qualification codes - refer to Appendix 9 of the SDR Manual)
  • the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) level, and the ISCED code of the qualification
  • the level of the qualification on the NZQF
  • the outcome of completing the qualification (for example, whether the qualification is designed to lead the student directly into the labour market)
  • the New Zealand Standard Classification of Education (NZSCED) of the qualification (for more information see below)
  • whether distance learning is available.

Making a change to a qualification

If a TEO makes a significant change to a qualification, it must meet the requirements of Condition SAC3+011.

Information about courses

Before we will approve a qualification as eligible for SAC3+ funding as part of the mix of provision agreed in a TEO’s Investment Plan (and after an external quality assurance body approves a qualification), a TEO must disaggregate the qualification into component courses. 

A TEO must give us all of the following information about each component course in a qualification:

  • the TEO/provider code
  • the course code
  • the course title
  • the qualification code
  • the course classification
  • the NZSCED field of study
  • the level of the course on the NZQF
  • the number of credits of the course
  • the funding category of the course
  • the EFTS factor of the course
  • if the course is part of a pre-service teacher education qualification, the stage of the course
  • the course tuition fee
  • whether the course has an internet component
  • whether the course is eligible for PBRF
  • tuition fee that will be paid by international fee-paying students who are enrolled in the course
  • whether the course has embedded literacy and numeracy.

The key fields required for SDR submission are detailed below.

TEO/Provider code (INSTIT)

The four-digit code assigned by the Ministry of Education to uniquely identify each TEO.

Course code (COURSE)

The internal code for the course. The code must uniquely identify the specific course regardless of the period, location and year in which it is taught.

Course title (CTITLE)

This is the title that the TEO will use to prescribe or publish the course.  

The title of a course should indicate the content of the course as the title is used by the Ministry of Education and the TEC to ensure that similar courses are classified in a like manner.

Qualification code (QUAL)

For information on qualification codes see Information about qualifications on this page.

Course classification (CLASS)

Before a qualification can be approved for SAC3+ funding, we require information about the classification of each course that forms part of the qualification. Condition SAC3+009 requires TEOs to ensure that courses are accurately classified.

TEOs are required to classify their courses using the current 1-39 Classification Prescription.

The classification tables are included in the SAC provision at levels 3 and above on the NZQF funding mechanism.  A summary is provided below.

Classification

Description

#01

Agriculture; Horticulture

#02

Architecture; Quantity Surveying

#03

Arts; Advanced Studies for Teachers; Health Therapies; Humanities; Languages; Social Sciences

#03.1

Osteopathy; Acupuncture

#04

Business; Accountancy; Office Systems/Secretarial; Management

#05.2

General Education

#06

Computer Science

#07

Dentistry

#11

Engineering; Technology

#11.1

Priority Engineering

#11.2

Pilot Training

#12

Fine Arts; Design

#13

Health Sciences (excluding classifications #07, #15, and #17)

#13.3

Optometry

#14

Law

#15

Medicine (excluding intermediate/first year)

#16

Music and Performing Arts

#17

Health-Related Professions

#17.3

Dental Therapy

#18

Science

#19.1

Teaching: Early Childhood Education

#19.2

Teaching: Primary

#20

Teaching: Secondary

#21

Trades 1

#22

Trades 2

#22.1

Vocational Training for Industry

#23

Veterinary

#23.3

Veterinary Science Undergraduate (Years 3, 4, and 5)

#24

Nursing

#25

Medical Imaging

#26

Midwifery (1 year)

#27

Midwifery (3 year)

#28

Occupational Therapy

#29

Physiotherapy

#30

Medical Radiation Therapy

#31

Pharmacy Professionals

#32

Speech Language Therapy

#33

Medical Laboratory Science

#34

Clinical Psychology

#35

Audiology

#36

Dietetics

#37

Medicine Undergraduate (Years 4, 5, and 6)

#38

Foreign-Going Nautical

#39

Specialist Large Animal Science

At least 90% of the content or subject matter must fit into the classification the TEO has assigned to a course.  We  have provided some additional information about the 39 course classifications in the Course Classification Guide for 2017 (PDF, 604 Kb).  

When classifying a course the TEO should carefully consider the notes beside each classification and the content of the course. 

The classification of a course may also depend on the qualification level. 

To ensure that each course is classified correctly, we recommend that the TEO chooses a name of a course that correctly describes the major content of the course, and contacts us if it has concerns about an appropriate classification.

Example: courses at years 2 and 3 of an undergraduate Medicine degree are classified as #15.  Years 4, 5 and 6, however, have a clinical training element and therefore are classified differently, as #37. A postgraduate Medicine course is classified as #15.

Programme classifications

Some qualifications, for example Medicine, are classified as “programme classifications”.  We consider those qualifications in a different manner for funding purposes. 

The compulsory courses that make up those qualifications attract the funding category that is assigned to the qualification as a whole (the programme classification).

Postgraduate teaching qualifications

A course in a postgraduate teaching qualification should be classified as #03, unless each course in the qualification:

  • is designed for students who have a pre-service teaching qualification recognised by the New Zealand Teachers Council
  • contains a practical component of 50% or more at level 8 (or equivalent), that is undertaken in the early childhood, primary, or secondary sectors
  • involves on-going expert supervision.

A course that meets these criteria may be classified as #19.1, #19.2 or #20.

New Zealand Standard Classification of Education (NZSCED)

The NZSCED is a subject-based classification system that contributes to international reporting, and in some cases may be used to describe the mix of provision in a TEO's Investment Plan.

All courses must be classified using the NZSCED classifications on a ‘best fit’ basis according to the predominant subject matter of the course. This means that the chosen NZSCED classification reflects the largest part of the subject matter of a course.

A full list of NZSCED classifications is provided in the SDR Manual Appendices

For more information on NZSCED classifications, see the Education Counts website.

Level on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQFLEVEL)

This is for the level of the credits on the NZQF contained in a course or paper that contributes to the qualification.  For more information on the NZQF see the NZQA website.

Credit (CREDIT)

The number of credits on the NZQF contained in a course or paper that contributes to the qualification.

Funding category (CATEGORY)

The funding category includes:

  • an alphabetic code that relates to the course classification
  • a numeric code that reflects the level of study.

Alphabetic code

The course classification determines the type of funding category which is applicable. The 2016 Alphabetic codes are set out in the table below. 

Category

Relevant discipline and course classifications

A

Arts [#03], Social Sciences [#03], General Education [#5.2], Vocational Training for Industry [#22.1]

B

Architecture (non-degree) [#02], Computer Science [#06], Fine Arts [#12], Design [#12], Music and Performing Arts [#16], Health Related Professions [#17], Trades 1 [#21], Vocational Training For Industry [#22.1], Medical Imaging [#25], Occupational Therapy [#28], Clinical Psychology [#34]

C

Architecture (degree) [#02], Engineering [#11], Technology [#11], Health Sciences [#13], Vocational Training For Industry [#22.1], Midwifery (3 year) [#27], Speech Language Therapy [#32], Medical Laboratory Science [#33], Audiology [#35], Physiotherapy [#39]

G

Dentistry (postgraduate only) [#07], Medicine (postgraduate only) [#15], Veterinary Science [#23]

H

Agriculture (degree) [#01], Horticulture (degree) [#01], Specialist Large Animal Science [#39]

I

Teaching [#19.1, #19.2, #20]

J

Business [#04], Accountancy [#04], Law [#14], Vocational Training for Industry [#22.1]

L

Agriculture (non-degree) [#01], Horticulture (non-degree) [#01], Osteopathy [#03.1], Acupuncture [#03.1], Vocational Training for Industry [#22.1], Nursing [#24]

M 1

Pilot Training [#11.2], Optometry [#13.3], Dental Therapy [#17.3], Pharmacy [#31],

N

Priority Engineering [#11.1], Dietetics [#36]

O

Medical Radiation Therapy [#30]

P

Trades 2 [#22], Vocational Training for Industry [#22.1]

Q

Veterinary Science (years 3-5) [#23.3]

R

Dentistry (undergraduate excluding intermediate – years 2-5) [#07]

S

Foreign-Going Nautical [#38]

T

Medicine undergraduate (years 2-3) [#15]

U

Medicine undergraduate (years 4-6) [#37]

V

Science [#18]

1 Please note all classifications in funding category M received a funding increase in Budget 2015.

 

The alphabetic code is based on the course classification.  TEOs should take case to correctly identify the right alphabetic code, particularly where there are multiple options (such as Vocational Training for Industry [#22.1].

Example: Courses at years 2 and 3 of an undergraduate Medicine degree are classified as #15 with an alphabetic code of T. However, a postgraduate Medicine course, also classified as #15, has the alphabetic code G.

Numeric code

A funding category is further defined by the level of study of the qualification of which the course forms part. We require the numeric code of a course which is to be determined by using the following table.

Category (numeric)

Classification by level and content of study

1

Courses designed for non-degree qualifications with no research requirement, including certificates and diplomas

2

Courses designed for undergraduate degree qualifications, including bachelors degrees, graduate certificates and diplomas

3

Courses designed for taught postgraduate qualifications, including postgraduate certificates and diplomas, bachelors degrees with honours, and taught masters papers

4

Research-based postgraduate qualifications, including masters' theses/dissertations of 1.0 EFTS or more for masters and doctoral study

5

Foreign student enrolments in research-based postgraduate qualifications

Note: the SAC3+ definition for “research-based”, and therefore eligible to attract funding category 4 SAC3+ rates, is that the research component comprises at least 1.0 EFTS.  This should not be confused with Performance-Based Research Fund (PBRF) eligibility criteria for research degree completions, which recognise qualifications with research components totalling 0.75 EFTS or more. 

Example: An undergraduate Medicine course is given the number 2.  A postgraduate Medicine course is given the number 3 (if a taught course) or 4 (if research based).

Postgraduate qualifications – numeric category 3

The funding mechanism states that a TEO may allocate a numeric category of 3 for courses designed for taught postgraduate qualifications, including postgraduate certificates and diplomas, bachelors’ degrees with honours, and taught masters’ papers.

The essential principle of postgraduate education is that the learning involved is at level 8 or higher on the NZQF.

A certificate or diploma can be classified as a postgraduate qualification if:

  • it is built on the undergraduate degree of the same discipline and at level 8 or higher on the NZQF
  • it is equivalent to the first year (Diploma) or half year (Certificate) of a master’s degree.

A qualification cannot be classified as a postgraduate programme if:

  • it is the fourth year of a four-year undergraduate degree
  • it is a graduate certificate or diploma that equates to the final year of an undergraduate degree, and is open to graduate students from a variety of disciplines.

An honours course can be categorised as postgraduate if:

  • the honours programme requires admission from a completed bachelor's degree
  • a student is specifically admitted into a final-year honours stream, or
  • a course is specific to an honours stream.

It is not appropriate to allocate a postgraduate category for an honours degree if a TEO has awarded the honours degree due to a student's superior achievement in an undergraduate course.

Research-based postgraduate qualifications – numeric category 4

A TEO may allocate a numeric category of 4 for research-based postgraduate qualifications, including masters' thesis/dissertation, of 1.0 EFTS or more for master's and doctoral study. 

A TEO may allocate a numeric category of 4 for a research-based postgraduate qualification if the qualification:

  • has an EFTS value of at least 1 EFTS. This total value may be spread over more than one year
  • includes one or more courses at level 8 or higher on the NZQF that total a minimum of 1 EFTS
  • requires a student, who is supervised, to produce a substantial research output that amounts to 100% of the learning and assessment for that course.

A course that is preparatory to a thesis, such as research methods, is not a postgraduate course.

Foreign student enrolments – numeric category 5

A TEO may allocate a numeric category of 5 for foreign student enrolments in research-based postgraduate qualifications. 

A foreign student involved in postgraduate research is classified as a valid domestic student enrolment for the purposes of SAC3+ funding.  See Condition SDR001 and Condition SDR001 (PTE) and the Eligibility page for more information.

Professional programme variations

A professional qualification may begin with an intermediate year of study that is not classified in the same category as subsequent professional years.

For example, a professional qualification such as health sciences, fine arts, agriculture, horticulture or music combine compulsory specialist courses with optional courses from arts, science and other classifications.

A TEO should use the course classification for optional non-professional courses, rather than the classification of a programme or qualification.

EFTS factor of courses (FACTOR)

The EFTS factor of a course equates to the course size that is a portion of the total EFTS value of the qualification of which the course is part.

As a guideline, we recommend that the size of the smallest course should not have an EFTS factor of less than 0.1.

Although a TEO may choose to deliver a smaller course, if the course is based on a single unit standard and has a course EFTS factor of less than 0.1, we do not require the TEO to further disaggregate the course.

A TEO may report one qualification as one course.  However, that means that a student can only enrol in the whole qualification.

After a qualification has been disaggregated into courses and we  have approved these as eligible for access to SAC3+ funding, the TEO cannot retrospectively disaggregate the qualification further.

Calculation

If a qualification is measured in credits, we require the EFTS factor of a course to be calculated by:

  • dividing the number of credits in the course by the total number of credits in the qualification
  • multiplying that number by the EFTS value of the qualification. 

However, if a TEO proposes to deliver a qualification in one year for which the credits exceed 120, we require the TEO to calculate the EFTS factor for that course using the total number of credits, not 120.

The EFTS factor must be expressed to four decimal places.

Example: if a qualification has a total of 60 credits and an EFTS value of 0.5, the EFTS factors of the courses in the qualification are calculated as:

Courses

Credits

Qualification EFTS value

Course EFTS factor

1

24

0.5

24 / 60 x 0.5 = 0.2000

2

20

0.5

20 / 60 x 0.5 = 0.1667

3

16

0.5

16 / 60 x 0.5 = 0.1333

 

Credits = 60

 

EFTS value = 0.5

Stage of pre-service teacher education qualification (STAGE)

If the course is part of a pre-service teacher education qualification, the TEO must also give us the stage. It contains a value to indicate the stage of the qualification to which the course contributes.

Course tuition fee (FEE)

The course tuition fee (inclusive of GST) is the standard fee that domestic students normally pay for tuition and costs associated with enrolment in the course. Importantly, the course tuition fee is net of:

  • compulsory course costs (for example, administration charges, examination fees, material charges)
  • fees exempt from the Annual Maximum Fees Movement (for example, student services levies, student association fees, health fees, record of prior learning fees).

Internet based learning indicator (INTERNET)

The TEO must indicate whether the teaching and learning in the course is currently available (in part or as a whole) through the internet.

PBRF-eligible course indicator (PBRF Eligible)

The TEO must indicate if the course is eligible for Performance-Based Research Fund (PBRF) funding.

A course is eligible for PBRF funding if it is wholly research-based and meets the TEC’s PBRF guidelines, which are detailed in the PBRF section of this website.

Tuition fee paid by international fee-paying students (FOREIGN FEE)

The tuition fee paid by an international student who will be enrolled in the course.  

Compulsory course costs fee (CCCOSTS Fee)

The compulsory course costs fee of the course. Compulsory course costs include:

  • administration charges
  • examination fees
  • other charges associated with a course or programme of study
  • material charges
  • costs of field trips
  • any compulsory purchase of equipment or books through the TEO.

Embedded literacy and numeracy flag (EMB LIT NUM)

The TEO must indicate whether a course includes embedded literacy and/or numeracy.

A course that embeds literacy and numeracy will deliver deliberate teaching of literacy and numeracy and will be part of a programme that has:

  • explicit literacy and numeracy statements, such as learning outcomes or teaching and learning statements within programme or course information
  • a literacy and numeracy diagnostic assessment for each student
  • assessment of each student's progress in literacy and numeracy.

Approving the qualification for access to funding

When approving a qualification as eligible for access to SAC3+ funding, we will:

  • check that the details of the qualification are consistent with the TEO’s quality assurance approval for the qualification
  • consider whether the EFTS value of the qualification is correct
  • check that the course or qualification is eligible in accordance with the funding mechanism and our conditions
  • consider whether students enrolled in the qualification should be able to access a student allowance and/or the Student Loan Scheme.

A TEO can use the ‘qualification search’ in the STEO website to find a current list of qualifications approved for SAC3+ funding.

Qualifications approved for SAC3+ funding in the previous calendar year remain eligible for SAC3+ funding in the current year if they are included in a TEO's Investment Plan (either referred to in the mix of provision or aligned to the activities of the Investment Plan) for that year.  TEOs wishing to add a new qualification that is not included in their Investment Plan should first discuss this with their TEC Investment Manager.

Approving a qualification for student allowances and the Student Loan Scheme

We are responsible for approving each qualification for student access to student allowances and the Student Loan Scheme. A qualification must be approved for SAC3+ funding before a student can access a student allowance and the Student Loan Scheme.

Before we will approve a qualification for student access to student allowances and the Student Loan Scheme, the TEO seeking qualification approval must be one of the following:

  • accredited by the relevant quality assurance body to deliver the content of a qualification
  • able to show that there is an arrangement in place with an accredited TEO to deliver any content for which the TEO does not hold accreditation.

As we will not backdate approval for access to student allowances and the Student Loan Scheme, we require this information at least four weeks before the start of tuition for the qualification.  This will ensure that each student who is enrolled in an approved qualification can access financial support (if they are eligible).

Qualifications delivered full-time

We will only approve a SAC3+ funded qualification for student access to both student allowances and the Student Loan Scheme if it:

  • is delivered full-time
  • runs for a minimum of 12 weeks
  • has an EFTS value of at least 0.3.

Qualifications delivered part-time

A qualification of less than 0.3 EFTS is classified as part-time regardless of the number of weeks over which it is delivered. A part-time qualification is not eligible for student access to student allowances.

We will only approve a SAC3+ funded part-time qualification for student access to the Student Loan Scheme if it meets one of the following criteria:

  • runs for 32 weeks or more and has an EFTS value of at least 0.3 EFTS, or
  • runs for fewer than 32 weeks with an EFTS value of between 0.25 and 0.3.

Loan entry threshold

The loan entry threshold (LET) is used to determine whether a qualification is full-time or part-time. This affects the qualification's eligibility for student access to student allowances and the Student Loan Scheme.

The LET is also used to identify the minimum EFTS value required for a student's full-time status.

The LET is determined by matching a range of gross weeks to a range of EFTS values.  A gross week is the total length of enrolment in a programme of study, including holiday weeks.

The table below shows this relationship (qualifications of less than 0.3 EFTS may still be eligible for student access to the Student Loan Scheme).

 

LOAN ENTRY THRESHOLD TABLE

Length of enrolment
(Gross weeks)

Loan entry threshold
(EFTS)

12

0.3

13

0.3

14

0.3

15

0.3

16

0.4

17

0.4

18

0.4

19

0.4

20

0.5

21

0.525

22

0.55

23

0.575

24

0.6

25

0.625

26

0.65

27

0.675

28

0.7

29

0.725

30

0.75

31

0.775

32-52

0.8

53 or more

1.0

A TEO seeking approval for a qualification to be eligible for student allowances or the Student Loan Scheme should ensure that these criteria are met in order to have the qualification approved in time for a student to arrange access to financial support.

If a TEO is seeking approval for a qualification to be eligible for student allowances or the Student Loan Scheme and does not meet these eligibility criteria, we will not approve the access but may approve the qualification as eligible for SAC3+ funding. 

Student loan approval for pilot training

If a TEO has been allocated specified EFTS for aviation provision that includes an in-flight training component (pilot training), it must comply with Condition SAC3+029.

The TEO must supply StudyLink with the correct student enrolment information through the Verification of Study system, and ensure that:

  • annual student loan fee borrowing for any pilot training student that is studying full time does not exceed $35,000 per EFTS; and
  • where a pilot training student is studying part-time, annual student loan fee borrowing does not exceed the proportion of $35,000 that is represented by the proportion of an EFTS course load that is being undertaken by the student.

     

Qualification close process

A TEO can close a qualification that it no longer offers. This removes the qualification from the NZQA Register of Quality Assured Qualifications and a TEO's list of active qualifications.

The process can be found on the STEO website.

 

  • Last changed: 23 June 2016
  • Last verified: 23 June 2016