External Collaborative and Linked Providers

Click here for a register of Collaborative Providers

Click here to register a New Collaborative Provider

Click here for the University's policy on collaborative provider agreements: QA246 (in progress)

The QQA Act 2012 requires Designated Awarding Bodies (DABs) (i.e. NUI Galway) develop QA policies and procedures (P&Ps) for the approval and periodic review of all teaching, research and support activities including those of collaborative providers (CPs) and specifically for the approval and periodic review of the P&Ps of so called Linked Providers (LPs). 

Linked Providers

LPs are legally independent organisations registered and operating within the Republic of Ireland with their own internal P&Ps and where the DAB has agreed to accredit and award all programmes of learning. This agreement is typically outlined in a memorandum of understanding/agreement (MOA). Linked providers are required to have their P&Ps initially approved and periodically reviewed by DABs under the terms of the QAA Act 2012.

Example A: An Irish University (DAB) and independent Irish College (LP) have an agreement where the DAB approves and awards all degree programmes offers at the LP. Programmes designed and delivered by the LP are done so under their own internal P&Ps. Under the QAA Act 2012 the DAB is required to approve and then periodically review these P&Ps.

Collaborative Providers

CPs are legally independent organisations that have either (i) agreed to comply with the DABs own internal P&Ps or (ii) are recognised as a designated awarding body or the equivalent in Ireland or abroad. CPs are not subject to approval by the DAB under the specific terms of the QAA Act 2012 but may be subject to review reference to the DABs own internal P&Ps and the terms of any MOA. There are a number of types of agreements between the DAB and CPs under this heading including: articulation (e.g. 2+2), joint, double, multiple degree awards and student exchanges e.g. ERASMUS. 

Example B: An Irish University (DAB) and an independent Irish College (CP) have an agreement whereby the DAB approves and awards a degree designed and provided by the CP. The programme(s) is delivered by the CP under internal P&Ps of the DAB.

Example C: An Irish University (DAB) and an independent foreign university (CP) having the equivalent status of a DAB, have an agreement where both organisations approve and award programme(s) of study using an articulation arrangements e.g. first two years of the programme are carried out in the CP and the final two years in the DAB. Each segment of the programme are subject to each organisation’s own internal P&Ps.

Example D: An Irish University (DAB) and an independent professional body (CP) have an agreement where the DAB approves and awards degrees offers by the CP. Programmes delivered by the CP are approved by and are carried out under P&Ps of the DAB.