To whom it may concern,
Accreditation Agency of Curacao (AAC) is an autonomous and high-quality accreditation agency for higher education and established in Curacao. AAC is to accredit bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs in Curacao and other countries. Accreditation is a process of institutional review by the external bodies against publicized and accepted standards for higher educational institutions for quality assurance and continuous quality improvement. Accreditation is an objective and peer-review process designed to attest the quality of developing and established educational programs.
The objectives of AAC accreditation are;
- Achieving and maintaining standards of excellence in programs of higher education
- Guiding the educational institutions and providing them with constructive feedback
- Maintaining the confidence of the public of the region in the quality of higher education
Dr. Sateesh Arja, M. B.B.S., MHPE, MSPH, PFHEA, FAMEE, FAcadMEd
Accreditation Commission, AAC
The Program Accreditation
The Program Accreditation focuses particularly on innovative, entrepreneurial and internationally oriented Higher Education Institutions (HEI). The procedure contains a comprehensive evaluation of the institutional strategy, program quality assurance system and program recourses. The relevant areas of the Higher Education Institution in this procedure are:
Standard 1: Institutional overview
Standard 2: Ethics and diversity
Standard 3: Strategic design of program(s)
Standard 4: Quality management and improvement
Standard 5: Administration and teaching staff
Standard 6: Student and stakeholders’ engagement
Standard 7: Learning and teaching
Standard 8: Program handbook
The accreditation procedure for program accreditation takes between 8 to 12 months.
The procedure gives AAC and the Higher Education Institution in question a detailed evaluation of the program strengths and weaknesses and shows the essential future opportunities and hazards. This enables the HEI to identify and take efficient measures to achieve the self-imposed goals.
• Application with basic information about the institution and the program, strategy, and quality assurance
• Introductory discussion about the procedure and conclusion of contract
• Draft of a program self-evaluation report according to the AAC Assessment Guide
• Appointment of the expert panel (5 experts – Two academic members, one student member and one member from the professional field)
• Compilation of a self-evaluation report according to the AAC Assessment Guide
• Site visit of 2½ – 3 days at the HEI
• Compilation of the assessment report by the expert panel
• Statement on the report by the HEI
• Final accreditation decision of the Accreditation Commission of the AAC for Program accreditation
• Option for a complaint against the procedure via an email to the AAC office or an appeal regarding the commission’s decision
• Publication of the accreditation report
• The accreditation is valid for 6 years and must be updated afterwards
To provide guidance during a procedure, AAC provides guidelines for preparing an application for program accreditation or for institutional accreditation. The agency also provides continuous feedback during all steps of a procedure. Our experts can give you recommendations on the further development of your application and Self-report.
El proceso de garantía de calidad ofrecido por dos agencias de renombre (AQAS y AAC) dará a las universidades la oportunidad de mejorar continuamente y muchas ventajas:
- Los estudiantes obtienen una cualificación atractiva que suele ser aceptada tanto en el país de origen como en Europa
- Mejora de la calidad de los programas
- Creatividad y nuevos enfoques sobre el estudio y el aprendizaje
- El certificado de garantía de calidad externa proporciona una mayor reputación y atrae a más estudiantes
- Visibilidad pública de los programas
- Abre la puerta a la internacionalización en general en las universidades de Educacion Superior
- La doble acreditación sale mas barato y exige menos esfuerzo que dos acreditaciones
Standards for Quality Assurance in Higher Education
The AAC accreditation guidelines are based on the European Standards and Guidelines (ESG). Other national and international standards have also been incorporated into the formulations of the standards. More on the ESG standards are below.
Appeals against AAC Decisions
Applicants may appeal against decisions of the Accreditation Commission on procedural grounds or in the case of perversity of judgment. The Academic Board (Appeals Committee) has the responsibility to consider appeals.
Grounds of Appeal
The possible grounds of appeal are limited to procedural errors and/or perversity of judgment. Mere disagreement with the Accreditation Commission judgment does not constitute a valid ground of appeal.
An appeal on procedural grounds may be lodged if AAC procedures, other regulations, any applicable legislation, or generally accepted principles of fair and equal process were dishonored. Perversity of judgment may be claimed if a decision is clearly unreasonable or disproportionate in the light of the available evidence.
If the Academic Board accepts the appeal, the Accreditation Commission decision is voided and the case referred back to the Accreditation Commission. The Accreditation Commission will take due account of the grounds of appeal and the reasoning of the Academic Board in taking a new decision. An appeal is rejected if it is either unsubstantiated or not based on valid grounds.
Appeals need to be submitted to Academic Board in writing within 90 days of being notified of the rejection of an application. The appeal has to clearly specify on which grounds it is lodged. The Academic Board will decide on the appeal within 120 days.
Before taking a decision, the Academic Board might request further clarification or comments on the grounds of appeal from the Accreditation Commission, the review coordinator, the review panel, or the applicant.