Tribune News Network
The National Committee for Qualifications and Academic Accreditation (NCQAA), in collaboration with Qatar University (QU), organised the first introductory meeting in the presence of QU president, deputy presidents, college deans and several officials from higher education institutions in the country.
In his speech, Dr Mazen Hasna, chairman of the NCQAA, said, “The National Committee for Qualifications and Academic Accreditation was established by Cabinet Decision No. 12 of 2022. The committee’s responsibilities were defined by the Cabinet Decision, which include overall supervision of the national qualifications framework and its periodic update in accordance with the state’s general policies.”
Furthermore, the committee is responsible for accrediting qualifications (certificates and academic degrees) awarded by higher education institutions in the country to ensure their alignment with the national qualification framework. The committee will also contribute to the development of higher education institutions and enhance high-quality educational opportunities by establishing quality assurance standards and promoting compliance with them. Through the academic accreditation system, the committee ensures that higher education institutions adhere to the standards set by the committee.
He pointed out that academic accreditation is the process of evaluating the quality of higher education institutions or a specific educational programme to recognise that the institution or programme has achieved specific and accredited quality standards. Dr Mazen added, “The committee reports directly to the Minister of Education and Higher Education, granting it independence. Despite its independence, the committee works closely with the higher education sector in the country.”
He also provided an overview of the institutional accreditation standards that the committee has been working on in recent months, which include five criteria: the institution’s mission and organisation; the availability of institutional resources; institutional planning and effectiveness; the achievement of the mission; and the institution’s impact and alignment with the partners’ aspirations.
On the efforts of the committee in managing the national qualifications framework, the committee’s chairman mentioned that visits for academic accreditation of universities will commence during the upcoming academic year 2023–2024. This will involve collaborating with two local higher education institutions to prepare the self-study, which will be the focus of the accreditation process.
Additionally, the committee will open the nomination process to prepare programme evaluators from within the country, with the aim of training and qualifying them to participate in the assessment committees for higher education institutions during accreditation visits.