WHAT IS ACCREDITATION?
One of the first steps any prospective student should take before enrolling in a college or university is to verify whether or not the training service is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency.
Accreditation is a voluntary activity initiated by the institution that requires a rigorous self-evaluation and an independent, objective appraisal of the overall educational quality by peers. Accreditation emphasizes quality assurance and a commitment to continuous quality enhancement.
In order for potential colleges to proceed with the accreditation process smoothly, they must meet the general standards set by the peer review accreditation boards.
Each college is typically assessed using the following criteria:
- Overall Mission of the College
- Objectives and Goals
- Student Requirements for Admissions
- Services Available to Students
- Quality of Education
- Reputation of Faculty
Accreditation is important because it:
- Helps determine if an institution meets or exceeds minimum standards of quality.
- Helps students determine acceptable institutions for enrolment.
- Helps employers determine the validity of programs of study and whether a graduate is qualified.
- Employers often require evidence that applicants have received a degree from an accredited college or program.
- Enables graduates to sit for certification examinations.
- Involves staff, faculty, students and graduates.
- Creates goals for institutional self-improvement.
- Provides a self-regulatory alternative for state oversight functions.
- Students must attend an accredited institution to apply for government grants or loans.
WHAT IS A SKILLS DEVELOPMENT PROVIDER?
As a skills development provider, NID is a body which delivers learning programmes that culminate in specific National Qualifications Framework standards or qualifications and manages the assessment thereof.
Accreditation: “one provider, one Quality Assurance Management (QAMD)”
All providers, regardless of the sector in which they are active, may be accredited by only one Quality Assurance Management Division. Where a provider offers learning programs across more than one sector, it is a requirement that at least 51% of that provider’s offerings must fall within the scope of Services SETA Quality Assurance Management Division (SETQAA). The provider is responsible for determining and providing evidence of primary focus in its application for accreditation to SETQAA. If the provider has applied to SETQAA for accreditation, but has other programs that do not fall within the SETQAA scope, the provider must contact the SETQAA department, to have their non-primary focus programme(s) evaluated through a MOU intervention.
AGAINST WHCH PROGRAMS CAN I APPLY FOR ACCREDITATION?
Providers can apply for accreditation against unit standards and/or qualifications registered on the NQF and allocated to Services SETA Quality Assurance Management Division (SETQAA) for quality assurance purposes.