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External & Strategic Affairs

Procedures for Agreements with Higher Educational Institutes including Memorandum of Undertanding (MoU)

DCU has many forms of relationships with different types of organisations, for a variety of reasons that may include:

  • The recruitment of students
  • The joint development of courses
  • Joint research proposals
  • To create sustainable strategic alliances

Types of agreements

In general, there are three broad levels of cooperation with other Higher Education Institutions which may be supported and formalised through:

  • Letter of Intent - provides a general framework for future collaboration at School or Faculty level between DCU and those in other institutions
  • Memorandum of Understanding - provides a general framework for future collaboration at institutional level, or leads to the provision of joint programmes or accreditation
  • Strategic Alliance - mutually beneficial long-term formal relationship formed between DCU and another party/ parties in order to pursue a set of agreed goals or to meet a critical organisational need while remaining independent organisations
  • In addition, collaborative EU level arrangements such as the Erasmus programme are coordinated through the International Office.

For further information on current and previous agreements with other institutions, please check the Institutional Linkages Database (DCU staff only).

Types of activites for agreements

National and international partnerships are based upon a broad strategic fit with university strategy in potentially the following areas:

  • Research collaboration & pursuing funding opportunities
  • Academic collaboration in learning innovation
  • Student recruitment
  • Joint ventures such as joint location in third party countries
  • Benchmarking various elements of the university
  • Other elements such as student, staff exchange, guest speakers, networking

Due Diligence for a MoU

Due Diligence is the process by which the organisation that DCU is proposing to work with is deemed to be a valid, suitable and timely partner.

Where an organisation approaches DCU with the intention of presenting joint programmes, a member of DCU staff will take responsibility for liaising with the institution, and will act as the 'proposer' for the partner, and must supply information with any MOU proposal. The following issues should be covered clearly in the MOU process:

  • Highlight the institutional background of the partner(s) e.g. date established, location of main branch (and other branches, if relevant), profit or non-profit, public or private, accreditation body, disciplines, level of qualifications offered, ranking (if appropriate), other partners (if known), recognition by NARIC and other relevant recognition by a professional or statutory accrediting agency.

  • Identify the type of linkage being proposed, objectives, resource implications, and fit with DCU strategic objectives.
  • Outline the synergy between the proposed agreement and the Faculty/School/Centre/Unit's mandate and direction.

If you are planning on developing an Agreement with another institution please email vp.external@dcu.ie for further information.