recent Heads of Computing event when Gerry discussed the various options with a number of college staff. He reported that the Heads expressed a clear preference for one of the options.
That option also received the unanimous support of the QDT today. The option is a common HNC with specialist HNDs in Technical Support, Computer Networking, and Software Development, and a generic HND Computing. The only real point of debate was the generic HNC since some members (not many) wanted to retain the HNC Computer Networking.
The HNC would consist of a small core (around six credits) and lots of options. The core units would be largely core skills, contextualised in Computing. For example, communication skills could be carried in a Computer Ethics unit; problem solving and numeracy could be carried in a Programming Principles unit.
The other debate related to Graded Units. HNC Computing has traditionally used an examination. However, the "normal" Graded Unit is a project, and there was an interesting debate around this issue. The conclusion was that we would seek permission to continue to use an examination. A (small) minority of members preferred a project. The HNDs would continue to use projects.
Another discussion related to assessment. There was a strong feeling that we had to significantly reduce the assessment load. It was proposed that no more than 10% of the time (in each unit) should be used for assessment.
While Gerry will continue to lead the overall project, we chose individuals to lead each specific award. So, Janice Maxted (Langside College) will take special responsibility for HNC Computing, Derek Summers (Perth College) for HND Computing, Chris Deegan (City of Glasgow) for HND Computer Networking, Willie McCabe (James Watt College) for HND Technical Support, and Peter Ainsworth (Motherwell College) for HND Software Development.
Now that we have made these important decisions, the next step is to put some flesh on the bones. The QDT will meet in January to create the five frameworks mentioned above.
Contact Caroline if you want to know more about this project.