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Online Undergraduate Handbook

Course choices & programme structures

Course choices & programme structures

In the first year

Students on BSc IBFE and BSc Accounting have a choice of semester 1 and/or semester 2 courses to make at the start of your academic year. You will receive an email about options prior to joining us in September in order for you to choose which optional courses you would like to take in your first year.

Your first and second semester examination entry will be based on the course unit choices we have listed for you at the end of the first two weeks of each semester.

Students on other Alliance MBS undergraduate programmes do not have a choice in the first year.

In the second and final year

The following is very important so please read it carefully, paying attention particularly to the need to confirm your final choice of options. Your examination entry will be based on the course unit choices we have listed for you at the end of the first two weeks of each semester. It is therefore in your own interest to check the course unit choices we have listed for you and confirm these by the due date.

If you have not confirmed your options with us by the deadline you risk having to take examinations for course units which you have not been attending.

At the beginning of each semester the Undergraduate Office will let you know the exact deadline date by which you have to confirm your options. We give you two full weeks at the start of each semester to confirm your options.

How to make your choice of second and final year course units

During the second semester of your first and second years, you will be able to read course unit outlines for the second and final year course units available to you in the following year. We will advise you when these course unit outlines have been posted on the web and you will be able to see them in My Manchester.

All students will attend meetings given by either their Programme Director or other tutors to receive information about second and final year courses being offered on their programme in the following year. You will be notified about detailed arrangements via email in due course.

Third year IM and IMABS students on exchange will receive this information by email.

The teaching timetables for the following year are normally issued at the end of May. You will then be given detailed information about how to choose your options on-line using the student system and the necessary deadlines you have to meet.

Balance of course units

It is expected that students will take an equal number of course units in each semester, i.e. a 60-60 credit split. However, in exceptional circumstances, a slightly unequal split may be permitted (e.g. 70-50 or 50-70) within the constraints of the timetable, following discussion at the beginning of the first semester with your Programme Director. Any decision to take an unequal split must be made within the first two weeks of the first semester.

Students should appreciate that, on academic grounds, such a course of action is not recommended by the School because an even distribution across the year is designed to ensure that you are not overburdened at any one time; furthermore those who opt for a 70-50 split will not be permitted to take 60 credits in the second semester to compensate for course units failed in the first semester (or 70 credits in the second semester where a 60-60 split has been opted for).

How to change your choice of course units

We recognise that a few of you will have made a mistake in your choice of optional course units, for whatever reason, and wish to reconsider your choice once teaching has started. There is always a risk in changing course units after the start of the semester because you may miss crucial information but we are aware that there may be reasons why it might be right for you. For this reason, you will be allowed a maximum of two weeks at the beginning of each semester in which to change your choice of course units. Your Programme Administrator will notify you of the exact deadline dates for confirmation of course units.

Second and final year students will be able to change your course unit choice yourself via the self-service functionality of the Campus Solutions student system. If you wish to change course units, you must first check on the student system that the course unit you want to switch to is available. Whilst you will have been allocated a place on your original course unit choices, we cannot guarantee that a place will be available on an alternative course unit, should you wish to change. You must also remember that changes will be subject to timetable constraints. First year students wishing to change an optional course unit must discuss this with their Programme Office within the first two weeks of teaching. The Programme Office will make this change for you as you will not be able to change this yourself within the student system.

It is your responsibility to check that you meet any pre- and co-requisites for your chosen course units, that you have selected course units that meet the requirements of your programme structure, and that you have selected course units totalling the correct number of credits. You should refer to the online course information on My Manchester for details of pre- and co-requisite course units and the MBS undergraduate online handbook for your programme structure.

Structure for your degree programme

Once you have confirmed your course units, you MUST check your choices against the rules for your programme.  If you have not complied with the programme requirements, you must make the necessary changes.

N.B. At the beginning of the second semester you will not be permitted to drop a course unit which you took in the first semester in favour of a second semester course unit, nor will you be permitted to opt out of a two-semester course unit at this stage.

If you fail to register with us any changes to your choice of course units by the end of the two-week period at the beginning of each semester you will be registered for examinations in your original choice of course units.

Selection of workshops, labs and seminars

Depending on your programme, most, and possibly all, of the course units you take this academic year will be run by Alliance MBS. For second and final year Alliance MBS course units that include a workshop, lab or seminar component, you will need to select workshops, labs and seminars that fit with your timetable. Alliance MBS course unit co-ordinators do not allocate workshop, lab or seminar groups in lectures so you must sign up for groups using the student system.

There is an online guide which explains how to sign up for seminars, labs and workshops. (N.B First year students will be allocated to seminars, labs or workshops by undergraduate administrative staff and will therefore not be required to use the self selection service).

If you need help in the first two weeks of each semester with choosing seminars/labs/workshops or changing course units please see a member of the Undergraduate Services Team in AMBSE/D20.

It is also important for you to know that when you enrol on a full year seminar you are signing up to be in that seminar for the full year and there is no automatic right for this to change at the start of semester 2. If you do have a genuine seminar clash, at the start of semester 2, with a second semester course unit choice that cannot be worked through within the full timetable availability, then the programme team will consider if there is available space in another seminar to allow for a seminar change and seek approval from the course coordinator.