ACCREDITATION- A STEP TO QUALITY EDUCATION

ACCREDITATION – A STEP TO QUALITY EDUCATION

Applying for accreditation of a particular school offered program is like applying for International Standard Organization (ISO) product quality seal. Once a program is accredited by a government agency handling the task on accreditation is like a product in the market with ISO certification for passing the quality standard and fit for human consumption. In colleges and universities this means the graduates of the particular program or degree passed the standard set by the government. Further, the university is producing a quality graduates as expected by the government. Accreditation deters the production of substandard quality graduates and prevents from establishing universities and colleges that do not have necessary requirements.

            Most countries throughout the world strive hard to make their education globally competitive. World class lecturers, laboratories, and educational infrastructures are part of the requirements during accreditation. In doing so, government established a governing body to carry out the objective of maintaining or upgrading the quality of education to meet the demand of our modern times.

In most countries the required documents for inspections and evaluations by the accrediting team are usually group into ten (10) areas, as follows;

I: The Vision, Mission, Goals and Objectives

This includes vision, mission, goals and objectives of the program being offered. Also included are the expected outcome, procedure in the formulation, monitoring, implementation, and the process of dissemination.

II. The Faculty

Faculty members involved in the Program and their respective academic ranks, highest educational degrees earned, specializations, years of teaching experience, appointment status and subject assignments.

III. Curriculum and Instruction

This area covers the curriculum of the Program ,description of how the curriculum was designed, developed, monitored, reviewed and approved by officials concerned, teacher-made instructional materials and brief description of the procedures followed in the    production of instructional materials.

IV. Support to Students

This includes the school’s student’s service program, description, objectives, organizational structure, and its components.

V. Research

The Institution’s Research Program must be checked according to its objectives, budget cost, researcher involve and different stakeholders participation in the formulation of the project

VI. Extension and Community Involvement

This covers the organizational structure of the Extension Unit of the Institute, description of the development and establishment of the institutional extension program, and the academic Unit’s Extension Programs/Agenda for the Program under survey.

VII. Library

This covers the organizational structure of the library, management, administration, and supervision of the library, description of the Head Librarian in terms of qualifications, supervisory functions and participation in academic and administrative activities of the Institution.

VIII. Physical Plant and Facilities

This includes the description of the campus where the Program is situated, including geographical location, area, boundaries, etc. This also includes the Land Use Map of Institutions, and the Campus Development Plan, and Inventory of physical facilities (qualify if solely used for the Program or shared with others), buildings and facilities for assemblies / conferences

IX. LABORATORIES

The area covers the required laboratories and inventory of existing laboratories, description of each laboratory room/shop or field laboratory, equipment found in specific and/ or special laboratories based on minimum requirements.

X. Administration

Required documents must show the Institution’s approved organizational structure and the supporting legal basis, list of Members of the Institutions Academic and Administrative Councils and the powers and functions of each Council, description of the channels and flow of organizational/administrative communication, program officials’ functions and duties (line and staff) as indicated in the Institutions organizational structure, program officials’ educational qualifications, academic ranks and length of service.

In order for the program to be accredited the school must meet the minimum requirements of the standard set by the accrediting committee. The inspection team checks the programs to be accredited based on the above criteria if they meet the minimum requirements.

It must be noted that programs to be accredited must be duly supported by necessary documents in all the ten areas. Preparations are more on filing of documents and records, and presentation of same to the inspection team for evaluation. Physical inspection and evaluation usually follows after the presentation of the recorded documents.

Accreditation will check the spiraling growing number of educational institution offering programs with substandard quality of education. Strict compliance to the minimum requirements set by the accreditation committee or council will bring forth good graduates and quality education. In some cases, failure to comply the requirement or failed to pass the accreditation after some initial warning with its recommendations, the committee may recommend the closure of the institution. And of course, politics, personal interest by the committee members and other influences that may interfere on its noble objectives of accreditation must be out of the story.

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