The quality of staff and learning at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) has led a national organisation to choose it as the place to train the probation officers of the future.
The university beat off competition from across the country to be awarded the contract by the National Offender Management Service (NOMS).
DMU will offer a complete pathway that enables learners to achieve the Professional Qualification in Probation (PQiP) - one of only three universities across England and Wales to do so.
Programme leader Kath Wilson said: "We are delighted!
"It was a very competitive tendering process and the feedback we got is that DMU received 100 per cent scoring on the quality of staff involved.
"We had to get over 80 per cent in every area in terms of quality of learning, materials and structure of the project.
"NOMS were especially pleased with how we had approached issues of diversity."
Ms Wilson added that DMU is one of a small number of universities to have been offering the PQiP for the past 15 years, but was in competition with numerous other universities and higher education institutes when its contract expired.
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The level six qualification, which gives eligibility to apply for a post as a probation officer, will be available to those already employed as a trainee with NOMS or a Community Rehabilitation Company working with offenders.
There are also options for those with an unrelated degree, or without formal qualifications but with experience of working with challenging people, to achieve the necessary modules to allow them to progress to the level six award.
Ms Wilson added: "DMU has a long history of providing training in probation.
"Our academic staff have extensive experience in research and scholarship relevant to probation. Programme staff include Professor Rob Canton, who has been influential in shaping probation work and training both in the UK and in Europe, and Professor Hazel Kemshall, an internationally renowned expert on risk management in probation.
"NOMS has consistently rated our training of probation officers as outstanding - and we look forward to building on our history of delivering training in partnership with the probation services in the Midlands and the East of England."
Posted on Tuesday 17th May 2016