Admissions and Enrolment Policy

ADMISSIONS AND ENROLMENT POLICY AND PROCEDURE

Introduction

This document describes the principles and processes followed by LSME to select and admit new students into the institution and covers the process of application for all levels of study in all the programmes we offer. It should be read in conjunction with the

  • LSME Recruitment of Ex-Offenders Policy
  • Equal Opportunities Policy
  • Disability Policy
  • Confidentiality and Data Protection Policy
  • Recognition of Prior Learning Policy
  • Access and Participation Strategy

The college is committed to ensuring that the admission process is undertaken with the principles of fairness, transparency and equal opportunities within the legal framework of the United Kingdom. The Candidates are welcome regardless of their background, and we aim to eliminate any form of discrimination on the grounds of gender, race, nationality, ethnic or national origin, sexual orientation, political beliefs, religious beliefs or practices, disability, marital status, family circumstances, parental/carer status, spent criminal convictions, age, or any other inappropriate ground. Regardless of where in the world, the student originates, the College will apply the same threshold of academic standards.

LSME aims to provide clear and accurate information and advice from the outset to prospective students concerning its opportunities for undergraduate study to ensure they are able to make an informed choice about the programme they are interested in. Such information will include, for example, entry requirements, financial costs, and the availability of financial support.

The number of students we can admit to our programmes is decided before admission starts, taking note of any number restrictions so that both the admission team and programme leaders will keep track of the numbers being recruited.

Responsibility and Monitoring

This Policy has been considered and approved by the Academic Board and will be reviewed annually Enquiries relating to this Policy should be addressed to admissions@lsme.ac.ak. This Policy takes note of best practice within the Higher Education sector, the Quality Assurance Agency’s UK Quality Code for Higher Education–Expectations for Quality: Advice and Guidance on  Admissions Recruitment and Widening Access and the Good Practice guidelines from the Consumer Protection law published by the Competitions and Marketing Authority.

Legislative and Regulatory Requirements

1. Data Protection

As LSME complies with the provisions of the UK’s Data Protection Act, 2018. The information provided in the application will only be used for admissions purposes within LSME and will form part of the student’s record. As per the Data Protection Act, the institution will not disclose any details regarding an application to a third party (such as family members and friends) without the applicant’s permission.

However, regulations for higher education and the Data Protection Act requires the college to release certain information to UK authorities upon request to assist those authorities with the prevention and detection of fraud or other crimes. In such situations, the information will be released to the appropriate authorities (the police, UK Visa and Immigrations, local authorities and the Department of Work and Pensions.

In situations where the data is analysed to fulfil statistical and reporting requirements, the data will be anonymised by the college.

Applicants may ask to see any personal data held by LSME. Requests must be put in writing to admin@lsme.ac.uk and must include details of the personal information and proof of identification.

For unsuccessful candidates, their personal data will be destroyed within one month unless a compliant or appeals process is being considered or the applicant has listed other preferred course choices, and the application will be considered for the next choice or course for the next intake period for their first choice. In this case, the document will be kept until the first day of the next available intake period. If the applicant does not show up, their document will then be destroyed immediately.

Applicants who were rejected because they did not pass their initial assessment test may ask for their scores on the day of the assessment only. On any other day, this information will not be available as we do not keep a record of such scores.

2. Equality and Diversity.

As per the Equality Act 2010, LSME is firm with its commitment to providing equal access to the courses and opportunities it offers and to treat all applicants fairly, transparently and consistently. We work to create and maintain an inclusive environment where people can be themselves and seek to achieve their full potential.

Applicants with disabilities/learning difficulties (including applicants with mental health difficulties) are encouraged to disclose the nature of their disability at the application stage; so that LSME can consider what arrangements may be put in place to assist them during the different stages of the admission process and make arrangements in good time and to enhance the applicant’s student experience.

3. UK Legislation on Immigration

If an applicant requires a visa to study in the UK, they must comply with the UK immigration laws. An applicant who does not meet all the UK visa requirement for the full duration of the programme would, therefore, be refused admission. Where an applicant requires a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, failure to take up an accepted offer of a place, withdrawal from the programme before the stated completion date of that programme, or another change of circumstance, is likely to impact on their permission to come to, or remain in, the UK. To comply with the relevant UK legislation and immigration regulations, LSME will notify the immigration authorities of any non-arrival, or late arrival, of an applicant and of any changes to the student’s enrolment status. If during the process of admitting a student or just after that, we find that, we are informed that the applicant has previously been in the UK without valid leave to remain, the immigration authorities will be informed, and the offer of admission will be withdrawn.

Additional information for international students can be found on:

https://lsme.ac.uk/students/international-students.

4. Changes to Legislative and Regulatory Frameworks

In the interest of fairness and transparency, LSME would not make changes to its admissions policy and procedures in the middle of the academic cycle unless our external regulators amend or update their own regulations or guidance. Where we are required to do so, LSME will comply with such changes if that means making major changes to its admissions policy and/or procedures accordingly. Such a change will be explained to prospective students indicating how they will be affected.

Responsibility for Admission

The Admission team at LSME is made up of Academic Staff (Programme Tutors/Lecturers, The Principal), Admin Staff and Admission Officer.

The admissions policy is overseen by the Admissions Team reporting to the Senior Management Committee and Academic Board. The team also works closely with the Access and Participation Team. The Admissions team considers the development, implementation and review of the student admissions policies for all levels of study, ensuring compliance with legislative and statutory requirements and alignment with the relevant aspects of the UK Quality Code. The team works closely with the Access and Participation team to arrange Open Days, and to implement access and participation activities in collaboration with the departments involved.

The team is also responsible for the communications and marketing material (hard copy and digital) to promote the college’s programmes and related opportunities.

For all programmes, the admissions team agrees with the departments the criteria be used to ascertain which applicants should either be shortlisted for an interview or receive an offer and what, if any, conditions should be attached to that offer.  The admission team also has responsibility for determining an applicant’s fee status (that is, whether the applicant satisfies the eligibility criteria for student finance for UK/EU applicant which is determined in accordance with the relevant UK legislation. The team also liaises with the Access and Participation (AP) team to agree on the context within which students who are under-represented in the institution and/or are underprivileged in society and have barriers to higher education may be admitted on our courses.

Contextualised Admissions

To counter disadvantage, LSME adopts a contextualised admissions approach when reviewing applications. Contextual data includes educational and socio-economic backgrounds. This forms part of LSME’s commitment to ensuring that all students with the potential to succeed have equality of access. Contextual admissions can positively reduce the gaps in admissions between the least and most represented students. It is defined as information and data used by universities and colleges, to assess an applicant’s prior attainment and potential, in the context of their circumstances. The aim is to form a more complete picture of the applicant.

Contextual data includes educational, geo-demographic and socio-economic background data, such as historic data about an applicant’s school or college. Contextual information relates to individual applicant circumstances, such as if they have been in care, or are involved in widening participation activities.

LSME’s Access and Participation Plan (APP) aims at removing barriers to Higher Education and raising their aspiration to succeed in life for our target groups. LSME is keen on encouraging disadvantaged young people from the backgrounds of white British, Black and other ethnic minorities including Asian, Africans and Caribbean, refugees/asylum seekers, care leavers, disabled individuals and individuals with poor socioeconomic backgrounds, to progress to university or meaningful employment, with an understanding that disadvantaged individuals do not have the same opportunity to meet our entry requirements.

Eligibility for a Contextual Offer

The eligibility to a contextual offer is made using the information provided on the LSME Application for Admission Form, Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form and LSME APP Referral Form. Each application is reviewed holistically after a discussion with the applicant during the interview to determine whether any of the following apply:

  • Live in an area of low participation in HE by OfS Postcode tool as POLAR4 Quintile 1 or 2
  • Live in an area of disadvantage – IMD Polar Quintile 1 or 2 by postcode tool
  • Have experience of being in care (Care Leaver)
  • Is a Refugee/Asylum Seeker
  • Is a young person (18+) who is no longer in the education system and who is not working or being trained for work (NEET)
  • Is a young person (18+) with special needs such as learning difficulties, mental health issues and/or mild physical disabilities and any unseen disability
  • Is a disadvantaged young person from the backgrounds of white British, Black ethnic minorities, Asian under-represented groups and Caribbean diaspora,
  • Has a household income below £25,000 and
  • Have not met the standard entry requirements for their course, e.g. lower grades, failed initial assessment.

 

As part of our contextualized admissions policy for applicants, LSME aims to identify the applicant’s full talent and potential and look beyond grades in their application. These eligible candidates will undertake our initial assessment test and be offered admission on our Foundation studies if they do not meet our entry requirement. Furthermore, LSME offers bursaries and scholarships to the eligible APP Foundation Year students through an assessment process.

Support for APP applicants

LSME welcomes applications from individuals whose academic qualifications do not meet the entrance requirements but meet the eligibility criteria for the contextual offer. LSME Admissions Team together with the LSME APP Team will provide the best advice to the potential applicants (APP students). Furthermore, they will encourage the potential applicants to complete all the relevant documentation including the Admission Form, Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form and LSME APP Referral Form in full as it is critical to assessing the eligibility for the support provided by the LSME APP Team. In addition, both teams will make sure that potential applicants are informed about disability and mental health support as well as the potential financial support they may be entitled to.

Application, Screening and Selection Process

a. How to Apply

LSME is interested in offering courses to applicants who meet the selection criteria of our Awarding Organisation and validation partners and meet the context within which AP eligible candidates are admitted. This commitment is underpinned by three factors that are key to indicate the likely success of a student:

  • Ability at a certain level in thinking and learning
  • A foundation of skills from which to extend their study
  • Motivation and commitment

These factors, alongside formal qualifications and experience, may be assessed through a student’s personal statement and in some cases at the interview and initial assessment in numeracy and literacy.

A prospective student who has received information, advice and guidance on the course they are interested in, will either fill an online application form or a paper application form and accepts our privacy notice developed as per the GDPR 2018 and Data Protection Act 2018. The application form is either submitted online or in person with all the supporting documents. After receiving the application form, there is a strict selection and screening process. The Admissions Team reviews all applications submitted, and this process includes an assessment of eligibility for the course as well as proficiency in English language and communication skills. The minimum entry requirements for each course are published on our website and in our prospectus.  All correspondences are carried out via letters/email. This process follows the steps outlined below and could take a minimum of one week or more depending on individual circumstances.

b. Verification of Documents

The Admissions Team checks the application pack, ensuring that all relevant documents are enclosed, and all requirements are satisfied. These include evidence of the applicant’s previous qualification, passport or other forms of personal identification, proof of address, DBS certificate for Teacher Training and Health and Social Care students, personal statement and contextual data/ information. The original documents are checked, a photocopy is certified as a true copy, and the original documents are returned to the applicant. The Admissions Team will also perform the following checks on the applicant’s qualifications:

  • Check that the qualifications are authentic – A letter/email will be sent to the awarding organisation or educational institution which awarded the qualification if there is any reason to seek clarification about its authenticity.
  • Check on-going qualifications – if the applicant is still on a course for a relevant qualification or is waiting for results, the applicant should provide documentary evidence from the awarding organisation or educational institution. If necessary, the Admissions Team will contact the relevant organisation to verify the applicant’s enrolment on that course.
  • Check foreign qualifications for equivalence. The awarding bodies used by LSME have entry requirements expressed in terms of the Qualifications & Credit Framework (QCF) levels.  The Admissions Team will check the UK equivalent of foreign qualifications with the UK National Recognition Information Centre (NARIC).
  • Check the authenticity of other supporting documents if necessary.

c. Application Processing

This policy outlines the processing of all applications submitted to the College. The Admissions Team will consider all applications and make the following possible decisions:

  • The applicant meets the minimum entry requirements and is eligible for an initial assessment and interview.

Or;

  • The applicant does not meet the minimum entry requirements and does not merit an interview or an initial assessment. The Admissions Team will convey the decision for rejection to the applicant indicating the reasons for rejection (e.g. qualification is below the required level or low English Language test score)

d. Initial Assessment

Learners will undergo an online initial assessment in Numeracy and Literacy conducted by LSME to ascertain their proficiency in functional skills before their interview.

Prospective candidates applying for Teacher Training and any qualification above Level 5 must pass these tests at Level 2 and demonstrate an in-depth proficiency in academic writing to be considered for an interview.

Prospective candidates applying for Level 5 or lower-level qualifications must pass these tests at Level 1 and demonstrate an ability to write maturely to be considered for an interview.

Applicants for the Masters programmes will not need to complete the initial assessment; however, will still need to submit a personal statement at a level set out by the programme requirements.

e. Interview

The Admissions Team will arrange a time and date with the candidate to carry out an interview. The interviewer will pay attention to the applicant to assess if:

  • Their appearance is the same as that of the photo on the passport copy submitted with the application form;
  • Their level of English (speaking and listening) is good enough to cope with the lectures and course delivery methods used at LSME;
  • Their knowledge and understanding of and enthusiasm for the subject appear to match the impression given by their qualifications and application form;
  • They can adhere to the attendance and coursework submission requirements which determine their potential to succeed in a chosen programme;
  • Their actual or expected academic or professional qualifications and grades are adequate;
  • Their relevant work experience will add some value to their training;
  • Their statement of purpose is relevant to the chosen programme.

The interviewer will complete a checklist when making decisions on applicants. The checklist record details of what was discussed, work experience, personal interest, attendance, work placement arrangements and general comments.

f. Decision

The Admissions Team will decide on whether to admit the applicant. These are possible outcomes:

  1. Acceptance – The team believes that the applicant will be ready to start on the chosen course provided certain conditions are met. The applicant will receive a Conditional Offer Letter, highlighting the outstanding conditions the applicant must meet before the College can confirm the applicant’s studentship. The applicant must confirm that they have read the terms and conditions developed in line with the CMA guidelines when signing their conditional offer letter, which will then result in the issuing of a Confirmation of Admission Letter once they have met all the conditions outlined in the Conditional Offer Letter. These letters will include a statement on the chosen programme, start date, finish date, awarding organisation, place of study, tuition fee, mode of study etc.
  2. Rejection – The team is not satisfied with the applicant’s ability to successfully study their chosen course.  The Admissions team will indicate the reason for the decision (e.g. academic grades too low, course not suitable or team is not convinced of the applicant’s intention to study and comply with relevant requirements etc.). A member of the Admissions Team will convey the decision of rejection to the applicant via email. The applicant is, however, offered further advice on alternative courses that may be suitable for his/her circumstances.  If the applicant has listed other course choices, the application will be considered for the next choice of course. Should the applicant not continue with LSME, the documents submitted will be destroyed within one month for Data Protection purposes.

Acceptance

Applicants must accept or reject any offer within two weeks of receiving the offer letter. Failure to respond within the stipulated time may result in the cancellation of the application.

Tuition Fees

Privately funded students must pay the minimum first instalment of tuition fees by the date stipulated on their payment plan. Students who will be receiving Student Finance do not need to pay a deposit of tuition fees to the School.

Admission Letter

Successful applicants who have met all the stipulated conditions will receive the Confirmation of Admission Letter from the College Admin Office.  For students on Student Finance, the Admissions Team will issue the Confirmation of Admission Letter upon the completion of the due diligence process.  Concerning privately funded students, the College will issue a Confirmation of Admission Letter for that student only on receipt of the first tuition fee deposit.

For further information about tuition fees and methods of payment, refer to our Tuition Fee and Refund Policy.

Admission Appeals Procedure

If an applicant wishes to appeal any decision during their application, the following procedures should be followed:

i. English Language

If an applicant appeals against an English language offer condition and does not feel he/she should take a test in the first place, the Administration Department will advise the applicant to send a written statement outlining the reasons for the appeal. This is then passed to the Programme Leader of the course for which he/she is applying for consideration. If the Programme Leader is satisfied with the applicant’s level of English, he/she can agree to waive the condition or request a re-sit, subject to approval by the Academic Board. If the Programme Leader does not agree to waive the condition or request a re-sit, the appeal can be referred to the Academic Board for further consideration at the request of the applicant.

ii. Rejection on any other Grounds

If an applicant appeals against his/her rejection to a course on any other grounds, they must provide the Administration Department with a written statement of why they should not be rejected on the grounds stated. The Administration Department will refer the application to the Programme Leader who will then if required, seek further information from the Admissions Team. A final decision and feedback will then be passed to the applicant.

If having received feedback regarding the decision not to offer a place at the College, an applicant feels they have cause for appeal or complaint, they may send a formal written request for a review to the admissions team.

However, applicants should be aware that the College will not review an admission decision where the grounds for requesting a review are simply that the applicant disagrees with the academic judgment that has been applied, and where there is no evidence that the correct procedures have not been followed.

The admissions team will investigate the circumstances surrounding the request for a review in consultation with the relevant academic leaders and/or with other appropriate persons.

When requesting a review of a decision, the applicant must include the grounds for requesting the review (i.e. any alleged procedural irregularities) and any supporting evidence including, where available, copies of any relevant documentation. Applicants will not normally be permitted to add additional material or grounds after their request for a review have been submitted.

The College will consider requests for a review of a decision promptly. We aim to respond within 10 working days of receipt of the written request by the Admissions Team. Where a response is not possible in that timeframe, the Admissions Team will write to inform the applicant, giving reasons for the delay.

If the applicant is not satisfied with the outcome of the review conducted by the admissions team, they may refer their case to the appropriate head of the Academic Board (Principal) who will conduct a further investigation. The applicant will again be required to submit their case in writing. This request will be considered promptly. We aim to respond within 10 working days of receipt of the written request by the Principal. The decision of the Principal shall be final.

Applicant Complaints Procedure

A complaint is when an applicant is unhappy with the service received from the Admissions team. There will be no discrimination or prejudice against any person who makes a complaint. The College will ensure that all complaints are treated seriously and dealt with promptly, with fairness and consistency. If a complaint is upheld, LSME will take such action or provide appropriate remedy and this will be done promptly. If a complaint is not upheld, the reasons for the decision will be communicated to the complainant.

In the first instance, anyone with a complaint should raise it informally with the relevant member of staff in the Admissions Team. If a complaint has not been resolved satisfactorily on an informal basis, the complainant should write by email to the Admissions Officer or use the online complaint form, outlining the nature and details of the complaint. The formal complaint must be made within 10 working days of the actions (or lack of actions) that prompted the complaint. The complaint will be responded to, supported by reasons, within 10 working days of the complaint being submitted. If it proves impracticable to respond fully within 10 working days, the complainant will be informed of the timescale for the receipt of a full response.

A formal Admissions complaint requests a formal review of the outcome of an Admissions decision.  A formal complaint about an Admissions decision may only be submitted on grounds of

  • procedural irregularity (e.g. failure to decide within the correct timeframe)
  • new information which may have affected the decision (with reasons why it was not made available at the time of application);
  • evidence of any action or decision which is not consistent with the LSME’s Admissions Policy or the Equality Act.

The prospective student does not have a right to complain against the decision not to offer them a place in the College. Unless any of the above grounds for a formal complaint exist, our decision not to offer a place to a prospective student is final.

The Admissions officer will monitor all complaints received and arrange a formal resolution as soon as possible via the appropriate personnel involved in the admission and the Programme Leaders for the course they are interested in. The issue should be resolved within 10 working days

If the process fails to resolve the issue, the Principal or a nominee with a third party will investigate the matter thoroughly and reply in writing within 10 working days. The decision of the Principal shall be considered as final.

The Complaints Handling Committee will monitor all complaints on an annual basis and will be responsible for implementing, or recommending to the Admissions Team, changes to systems or procedures suggested by the nature and pattern of the complaints received.

Registration and Enrolment 

The first week of the course is very important, and all students must attend. An enrolment form is completed, followed by our induction activities and an opportunity to interact with other cohorts and tutors.  Induction continues for a further 6 more days, spread over three weeks, to enable students to acquire transferable skills for their respective courses.

i. Late Registration

All learners must contact the Administration Department of the College if they are unable to enrol at the start date. Late registration is only permitted in exceptional circumstances. The Administration Department will seek final approval from the Departmental Head for another date for registration. Students who arrive late may be at a disadvantage as there may not be any orientation time available. It is the student’s responsibility to catch up on any time missed. If they are likely to miss the first month of the course, students will be advised to defer their course commencement to the next term. The regulatory authorities will be notified accordingly in the case of government-funded students.

ii. Deferring of Admission/Enrolment

The College does not normally defer admissions/enrolments. However, the College may reconsider an application for up to one academic year only. Students wishing to defer their start date will be reconsidered for the next session and must submit an updated CV to the Administration Department two weeks before their session begins. All applications are reconsidered in comparison with other applications for that session.

Procedure

  • Students who fail to register on their course within four weeks of the course start date support will be removed from that cohort of learners and the SLC will be informed accordingly and will lose their admission rights unless a strong reason with valid justification and valid evidence is provided.
  1. Students will be required to register at the College within 10 working days from the commencement of the course.
  2. Any student who fails to register with the College within the stipulated period and without any relevant or valid justification will be treated as a ‘No Show’. They will be informed and the School will cancel their admission and notify all relevant regulatory bodies within 10 working days.
    i. Registration and Enrolment Procedures apply to new and continuing students.

 

Next Review Date: October 2022

 
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