Factors of reference for Proposals for official Masters'-level Studies
The proposal for a Study Plan for any Master's Degree should be undertaken in terms of the following factors, as set down in Royal Decree 1393/2007, where the regulating of official university studies is dealt with, as amended by Royal Decree 861/2010 , dated July 2, and in the General Regulations of Official Studies in the UIMP (Governing Council of August 14, 2008).
- Masters'-level teaching has as its aim the acquisition by the student concerned of advanced training, either specialized or multidisciplinary, geared to academic or professional specialization, or to facilitating the first steps in the undertaking of research tasks.
- Masters' Degrees may be weighted with between 60 and 120 ECTS, which will encompass all the theoretical and practical training the student is expected to acquire: compulsory subjects, elective subjects, seminars, internships, tutored assignments, End-of-Master's Project, assessment-based activities, as well as others which may be deemed to be necessary, according to the characteristics of each Qualification.
- The maximum number of credits per academic year will be 60.
- Masters' Degree studies will conclude with the preparation and public defense of an End-of-Master's Project which will be weighted with between 6 and 30 ECTS.
- Modular design for the training provided: it is recommended that the studies be set up in terms of modules and subjects, a module being understood as being a set of related subjects.
- The minimum number of credits with which a subject may be weighted is 1 ECTS.
- The level of learning achieved by students in each of the subjects within the study Plan is to be expressed by means of numerical grades which will be recorded in their files (RD 1125/2003).
- A Teaching Guide will be made available in which the following will be specified with regard to each subject: skills to be acquired (general, cross-curricular, and specific), training activities, teaching methods, learning outcomes, assessment system, teaching staff, and bibliography.
- The planning of the Program will be year-based, semester-based, and will also provide both a single Program Plan, as well as a differentiated Program Plan, so as to cater both for full-time students, as well as for part-time students.
- It is compulsory that the Academic Management of the Program be undertaken by members of the Teaching Staff or Researchers who hold a Doctoral Degree (General Regulations for UIMP Studies).
- In general, the Teaching Staff involved in official Masters' Studies must be holders of a Doctoral Degree. Exceptionally, the UIMP may authorize the collaboration of highly qualified professionals or researchers belonging to other research centers so that they may develop their activity within specific areas of the Master's Program concerned.
- The assessment of the End-of-Master's Project will be undertaken by an Examining Board made up of at least 3 members of the Teaching Staff, or Doctoral-level researchers, as assigned by the Academic Commission of the Study Area concerned.
Contents of Proposals for official Masters'-level Studies
The proposals for official Masters' Studies will be set before the Vice Principal for Postgraduate Studies and Research of the UIMP, who, appointed by the Principal, is to chair the Commission for Postgraduate Studies.
- Full Description of Proposals for Official Masters'-level Studies Projects.
Only those Proposals that were to receive the approval of the Governing Council of the UIMP should also be submitted in full via the online virtual platform as set up by the Ministry of Education so as to facilitate application for verification of official Masters'-level Qualifications.
Procedure and Stipulated Periods for Approval
The Postgraduate Studies Commission will assess the proposals, according to the criteria for quality established beforehand by the University, and will prepare the corresponding report, which will be put before the Governing Council. The issuing of the report will include an analysis of the feasibility and strategic appropriateness of the proposal concerned and its compliance with current regulations, while positive value will be assigned to:
- the degree of international projection of the Teaching Staff and of the Program;
- the academic quality of the program concerned, to which end consideration will be given to the adequacy of the teaching and research, or professional, background of the group of those who will undertake the teaching;
- its coherence;
- the prior basis of the Study Plan and the interdisciplinarity that it sets out;
- the system of coordination and tutorials put forward;
- the monitoring and quality improvement procedures to be employed.
Approval of Masters'-level Studies is incumbent upon the Governing Council at the behest of the Commission for Postgraduate Studies.
The operative introduction of official Masters' programs within the UIMP requires having obtained, in each case, a favorable report from the National Agency for Quality Assessment (ANECA), together with a resolution involving positive verification by the Council of Universities, which will forward this same resolution to the Ministry of Education. The Ministry will place before the Government the proposal to establish the Qualification concerned officially, together with its inclusion in the Register of Universities, Establishments, and Qualifications (RUCT), the approval of which by the Ministerial Cabinet will be published in the Official State Gazette (BOE). This same inclusion will also entail it being considered initially as an authorized Qualification.
Once the Government has approved the official character of the Qualification, the Principal of the UIMP will give instructions for the publication of the Study Plan in the Official State Gazette (BOE).
Stipulated Periods of the Processing Schedule
On a yearly basis the Postgraduate Studies Commission will propose an annual schedule for the processing of new Masters'-level Studies, while taking into account the guidelines for assessment and verification as set out by the ANECA.
In general terms, the calendar will be as follows:
- July: mandatory submission of projects to the Postgraduate Studies Committee, which will issue a preliminary report.
- September: submission of completed drafts of new proposals for the following academic year to the Postgraduate Studies Committee.
- October: submission of the new proposals to the Governing Council.
- November: authorized submission of proposals to the ANECA to await its assessment report. The completion of the Project Dossier which will accompany the application for verification of the Qualifications concerned will be implemented via the online platform set up for this purpose by the Ministry of Education.
Renewal and Cancellation of official Masters'-level Studies
Once instituted, the official UIMP Masters' Studies concerned will be valid for four years, at the end of which time, upon application by the Academic Commission, they may be renewed for periods of the same duration.
The proposal for renewal will be submitted to the Postgraduate Studies Commission, to await its report, prior to March 30 of the current course period for which renewal is proposed.
The proposal for renewal will necessarily include the Teaching and Research Plans involved, together with an economic feasibility study of the new edition of the Studies concerned.
If the proposal for renewal were to entail modifications to the already authorized Study Plan concerned, it will be compulsory to submit them to the Postgraduate Studies Commission before being reported to the University Coordination Council. If the changes are approved by the said Council, considering, as it, the Council, were to, that they do not involve a change in the nature and objectives of the Qualification, the University will incorporate the accepted modifications into the Study Plan.
Should that not be the case, it would be deemed to be a new Study Plan, for which reason the authorization process should be initiated as if it were a new proposal that was being dealt with.
The Postgraduate Studies Commission may, at any time, justifiably, or given the application made by the respective Academic Commission, propose the withdrawal of the already implemented Masters'-level Studies concerned. In any case, those students who may have begun those studies, and wish to do so, will be given the guarantee of being able to complete them.