Bradford College has joined forces with an award-winning university which will validate the degrees offered to its students.

The college, the largest provider of higher education outside the university sector in England, currently offers more than 150 degree courses to more than 4,000 students.

Under the terms of the agreement, Teesside University will become the validating body for the majority of both undergraduate and postgraduate awards from the new academic year in September 2013.

Michele Sutton, the college’s principal and chief executive, said: “We have been delivering higher education courses for nearly 50 years and are passionate about offering quality degrees for fair fees. We are delighted about this partnership with Teesside University.

“A review of our higher education provision in 2010 saw the college awarded the highest possible judgement for the quality of our courses by the Quality Assurance Agency.

“We are delighted that our new partner was awarded the UK’s best new university for student experience in the Times Higher Education survey 2011. Our shared mission, vision and values will result in a quality and supportive experience for college students.

“Continuing studies into higher education is a huge decision and this agreement will enable our students to continue to benefit from courses which have a vocational and professional emphasis delivered in a friendly and supportive environment. In addition, we look forward to developing the partnership to undertake joint research and staff development.”

Vice-chancellor Professor Graham Henderson said: “This is a really exciting, and potentially game-changing, partnership for both the university and Bradford College.

“Both of our institutions share a passion for working in partnership with employers and encouraging and facilitating more people to benefit from higher education – placing quality education at the heart of everything we do.”

Lynn Parker, head of educational partnerships at the university, said: “We are delighted to be developing a strong relationship with Bradford College and we are looking forward to working together to establish a long and successful partnership.”