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Shooting two birds with one bullet” as the cliché goes. This is exactly what the AACCUP representatives did while attending the Asia-Pacific Quality Assurance Network (APQN) conference and annual general meeting (AGM) held at Natadola, Fiji Islands last May 25-27, 2016.

During the Asia-Pacific Quality Assurance Network (APQN) Conference held at Natadola, Fiji Islands on May 25-27, 2016, the AACCUP Executive Director, Dr. Manuel T. Corpus was elected as a  member of the Board of Trustees of the APQN.

The APQN Board of Trustees are the following: Prof. Dr. Jianxin Zhang (President), Prof. Angela Hou Yung-chi (Vice-President), Prof. Li Yaogang (Secretary/Treasurer), then the three Board members: Dr. Manuel T. Corpus, Ms. Malini Nair-Prasad, and Prof. Dr. Galina Motova; and finally Dr. Jagannath Patil (Past President as Ex-officio member).

Upon the invitation of the Council for Higher Education (CHEA) International Quality Group (CIQG), the AACCUP Board of Trustees accepted the invitation and approved AACCUP in its application for membership under BOT Resolution No. 030, s.2016 during its meeting held last March 14, 2016.

As the events take place at the latter part of the year, the Executive Director set the AACCUP formal application for membership to be submitted early January 2017.

The CHEA International Quality Group (CIQG) is a very prestigious quality assurance body with membership which is by invitation only.  It  is  a rewarding and important forum for colleges as well as international accrediting and quality assurance organizations worldwide to address issues and challenges focused on quality and quality assurance in an international setting. Specifically, this agency is designed to: 1) assist institutions and organizations in further enhancing capacity for academic quality, 2) advance understanding of international quality assurance, and 3) provide research and policy directions.

 

Three members of the AACCUP Board of Trustees were able to attend the 2016 SEMEO-RIHED International Workshop on Internationalization and Academic Exchanges in Avani Atrium, Bangkok, Thailand last February 23-25, 2016. They were: Dr. Luis M. Sorolla, Jr., Dr. Manuel T. Corpus, and Dr. Myrna Q. Mallari.

With the theme, “Embracing the New Norms for 12 Networks, Quality Mobility”, the said conference has definitely added insights to the  members of the Board more  particularly in embarking into internationalization of quality assurance processes.

 

With the theme, “Quality Assurance in Higher Education in Challenging Times”, the Accrediting Agency for Chartered Colleges and Universities in the Philippines (AACCUP), Inc. has actively participated to the Biennial Forum of the International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education (INQAAHE), which was held at Sigatoka, Fiji Islands last May 22-24, 2016.   

As has always been practiced with its twinning international quality assurance agency, INQAAHE used to hold this international conference in the same venue as the Asia-Pacific Quality Assurance Network (APQN) Conference. Thus, those who participated in this forum also had an opportunity to participate in the APQN conference. This activity was hosted by the Federal Higher Education Commission (FHEC) of the Republic of Fiji, Fiji Islands.

Towards a Robust Internal Quality Assurance System (IQAS) in the State Colleges and Universities” was the theme in the 2016 Mid-year Conference which formally launched the implementation of IQAS among SUCs in the country. This was held at Royal Garden Hall Convention Center at General Luna St., Iloilo City last July 27-29, 2016.

Prof. Dr. Sun Jianrung, from Macau University of Science and Technology, served as the guest speaker, who talked on the concepts and practices of internal quality assurance. In his talk, he emphasized that IQAS involves both the administrative and academic functions of an institution. As an administrative function, it needs a functional  organizational structure; and, as an academic function, it involves processes and procedures of evaluation affecting the curriculum, instruction, accountability, and other academic operations of an institution.

This conference explicated the rationale as well as the whole process of the IQAS which were fully disseminated and clarified. Most of all, this conference formally launched the implementation of IQAS in SUCs all over the country.

 

The Board of Trustees’ Resolution No. 42, s.2016, stipulated the adoption of a new policy on program accreditation. This policy is the heart and soul of the “Internalization of the Quality Assurance System” (IQAS) among State Colleges and Universities, whereby qualified SUCs are granted the authority to conduct the Preliminary Survey Visit (PSV) of their respective curricular programs. Qualified SUCs are empowered in maintaining and assuring the quality of academic programs within their respective institutions. This was disseminated through a memorandum, dated July 21, 2016, calling the qualified SUCs to apply for the authority from AACCUP to conduct PSV.  Among the qualifications are the following:

The biggest single index of a quality-assured academic program is its accreditation status and the commitment to sustain and upgrade it. As years pass in AACCUP accreditation history, there is generally an uptrend in the number of programs that continuously keep updating and upgrading their levels of accreditation.

A  total  of  1,412  programs  were  granted accreditation  status  in  2016.  These are broken down as follows:

Status/Level 

Number of Programs

Candidate

299

Level I  Accredited                  

417

Level II  Re-accredited             

487

Level III Re-accredited              

198

Level IV Re-accredited                

11

TOTAL

1,412

 

As shown, only 11 programs have successfully qualified in the Level IV-Phase 2 survey visit in 2016. There were actually  20 programs that were visited for Level IV-Phase 2; but some programs still need to comply with the mandatory requirements prior to the granting of the award while a few were not able to make it and are thus required to undergo the same level of survey visit again.

 

Pursuant to Executive Order (EO) No. 201, s. 2016, entitled “Modifying the Salary Schedule for Civilian Government Personnel and Authorizing the Grant of Additional Benefits for Both Civilian and Military and Uniformed Personnel” and in accordance with the National Budget Circular No. 568, issued January 5, 2017, the Accrediting Agency for Chartered Colleges and Universities in the Philippines (AACCUP), Inc. being a private non-profit organization serving government organizations in the country, also implements this national regulatory mandate for its personnel.

This month, all personnel in the AACCUP office would be receiving their salary differentials as provided for in the personnel’s position and the corresponding approved salary grades following the guidelines.

AACCUP has remained compliant to national circulars and other regulatory bodies, especially when it affects its personnel.

 

After some years of accumulating AACCUP’s encounters, challenges and practices from local, national and international perspectives, 2017 marks the best time to revive the publications of AACCUP to capture what it has gained  in the previous years.