The Council for National Academic Awards (CNAA) was the largest single degree-awarding body in the United Kingdom. There were over 140 institutions offering first degrees and postgraduate level courses approved by the CNAA.
The institutions involved included polytechnics, institutions of higher education, Scottish central institutions, colleges of art and various other colleges throughout the United Kingdom.
CNAA awards are comparable to those of universities and these are recognised by professional associations and employers.
The CNAA was abolished by the 1992 UK Further and Higher Education Act and as a result, The Open University accepted responsibility for the care and maintenance of certain CNAA records and for providing appropriate access to them.
The OU (through the Centre for Inclusion and Collaborative Partnerships, CICP) is authorised to have care and custody of these records in order to authenticate original award documents or copies of them and to provide verification of entries in the records. However the OU is specifically prohibited from making any amendments to records of CNAA awards, issuing awards in the name of CNAA or rescinding or amending any such awards.