CASE Position Statement

Accreditation of Courses without University Affiliation

Issued August 2022


Historically, CASE have only considered accreditation of awards that are delivered by (or in affiliation with) a university that complies with the standards set by The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) Quality Code for Higher Education1. However, we recognise the limitations this sets and so have issued the following:


The QAA is an independent body entrusted with monitoring and advising on standards and quality in the UK higher education sector. The power to award a degree level qualification is dependent on compliance with these standards and ensure that:

  • the academic standards of courses meet the requirements of the relevant national qualifications framework;
  • the value of qualifications awarded to students at the point of qualification and over time is in line with sector-recognised standards (this includes award of transferable academic credits);
  • courses are well-designed, provide a high-quality academic experience for all students and enable a student’s achievement to be reliably assessed;
  • from admission through to completion, all students are provided with the support that they need to succeed in and benefit from higher education.

This level of student support, external scrutiny and governance would not typically be found with private course providers that sit outside of this quality framework.


The rapid emergence of point-of-care applications has resulted in some expansion of ultrasound training and education provision into non-conventional settings. Courses that are delivered outside of this standard model would not normally fall within CASE remit. CASE welcomes innovation and recognises the need for exploration of alternative training models. However, for a focused course or modular award to be consider for accreditation, CASE would require assurance of the following provisions:

  • Qualification governance equivalent to that provided by HEI affiliation
  • Effective student support in place (pastoral and academic)
  • Robust competency assessments (academic and clinical)
  • Qualification linked to a well-defined scope of practice
  • All relevant CASE level 6/7 learning outcomes are met

Where these conditions can be met, CASE welcome submission of courses outside of our normal requirement for HEI affiliation for consideration for accreditation.




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