Our mission is to serve as a reliable authority on educational quality and to promote enhanced opportunities for students, to inspire and promote quality in higher education and professional training by establishing, sustaining, and enforcing valid standards and practices and the assurance of an accreditation process focused on objectivity, which contribute to the development of a highly trained and competitive workforce through quality career oriented education. Our criteria represent international standards that can also be applied in the context of national and international markets.

Accreditation is a process of voluntary, non-governmental review of educational institutions and programmes. Institutional accreditation evaluates colleges and universities from an institutional perspective. We do not offer institutional accreditation per se.

'Accreditation' is defined by HEPISG as a mark of assurance that the programme (or in some cases the institution as a whole) meets the standards set by the accrediting body. The outcome of a successful programme accreditation by a PSRB may include one or more of the following:

  • graduates are able to practise as a professional in a specific field, and in some cases receive a license to practise that is required by law;
  • graduates are granted chartered status;
  • graduates are granted exemption from all or part of professional exams;
  • graduates are eligible for entry to membership of a professional association or learned society;
  • the programme is confirmed as meeting externally designated standards and quality.

There are many types of accreditation and processes vary widely, but they normally involve:

  • external peer review;
  • a definitive yes/no decision at the end of the accreditation process;
  • a time delimited period of accreditation, with further review by the end of the accreditation period;
  • regular monitoring of student performance.

Professional and Accreditation bodies award accreditation for professional and higher education programmes and academic study programmes in particular fields of study. As an Accreditation Body, The Quality Assurance Commission provides accreditation for professional, continuous and higher education programmes.

The programme accreditation applies to institutions aspiring to gain accreditation. The Quality Assurance Commission peers analyse characteristics of the institution’s programmes against The Quality Assurance Commission accreditation criteria, including the Institution, the Faculty the Students, the Curriculum, and the Mode of Provision.

Because we focus on the quality of the programme The Quality Assurance Commission accreditation provides a mark of the quality of programmes.

Institutions earning accreditation confirm their commitment to quality and continuous improvement through excellence in education, providing high-end teaching of quality and contemporary curricula.

Our accreditation is international in scope. The scope of The Quality Assurance Commission recognition is the programmatic accreditation of private postsecondary institutions offering certificates or diplomas, and graduate or postgraduate degrees in programs designed to educate students for professional, technical, or occupational careers, including those that offer those programs via distance education, and for transfer to or from the Bologna and UK system of higher education.

A continuing education programme is a postsecondary instruction designed to meet the educational needs and interests of adults, including the expansion of available learning opportunities for adults who are not adequately served by current educational offerings in their communities.

Our accreditation process includes:

  • external peer review;
  • a definitive yes/no decision at the end of the accreditation process;
  • a time delimited period of accreditation, with further review by the end of the accreditation period;
  • regular monitoring of student performance.

The QAC Accreditation in higher education is a process based on self- and peer-assessment for improvement of academic quality and public confidence. This quality control process revolves on a continuing basis and includes three basic steps:

Auto-Evaluation: The faculty, administrators, and staff of the institution or academic programme conduct an auto-evaluation using the QAC standards.

Peer-Audit: A team of peers appointed by the QAC reviews the programme details, may visit the campus to interview faculty and staff, and submits a written report of its evaluation including a recommendation to the accrediting body QAC.

Accreditation: Guided by a set of benchmarks about quality and outcomes, the QAC reviews the audit report and recommendation, makes a judgment, and communicates the decision to the institution and other constituencies as appropriate.

General Policy regarding Learning Programes in Education & Training at International Institutions.

This General Policy is comprised of the following nine Guiding Principles:

  1. Postgraduate level learning programmes are to be accredited in any specialisation.
  2. Learning programmes at the professional level are to be encouraged only if their viability is verified and confirmed according to the explicit accreditation criteria adopted by the Accreditation and Quality Assurance Commission. On the other hand, proposed programmes at the postgraduate level whose objective is to develop existing programmes at the graduate level may be considered only after submitting an evaluation of the existing graduate level programme, which should have graduated at least one class.
  3. Encourage programmes that depend on successful and proven experiences at the institution in which they are proposed.
  4. Encourage programmes that result in interaction and cooperation with international programmes of excellence through the exchange of knowledge, faculty members, etc.
  5. Encourage programmes in modern fields of knowledge, such as information technology, technological sciences, etc., which emphasize the interdisciplinary nature, and which may impact directly the development of the International society, the development of scientific research, the production of knowledge, and the supply of high caliber of trained human resources to the private and public sectors.
  6. Give priority to new programmes that reinforce the principle of specialization and complementarities among the programmes offered at the institutions.
  7. Priority is given to programs that reinforce the principle of complementarily among private institutions, whereby institutions apply theories on the ground, and focus on technical and vocational programmes and technological applications, aimed at enhancing the employment potential in the economy.
  8. Build on, benefit from, and develop the programmes that manifest excellence in professional and vocational institutions.

(i) Outcomes.
(ii) Resources.
(iii) Support.
(iv) Selling and Student Recruitment.
(v) Providers.
(vi) Collaborative Provision

(i) Designation of the award or qualification.
(ii) Name of programme.
(iii) Number and type of credits for the award.
(iv) Mode(s) of delivery, full-time, part-time, open learning, distance learning, e-learning.
(v) Campus/e-learning platform where programme is delivered.
(vi) Academic responsibility for delivery of the programme.
(vii) Does the programme have official and/or national recognition?
(viii) Joint or double degrees.
(ix) Faculty standards.
(x) Number of students graduating/achieving the award.
(xi) Student data for each programme.

The Process of Accreditation:

Application: Submit the Application for Accreditation along with the Self Assessment Report and the required documentation.

Eligibility: The QAC will conduct a review to verify that the application is complete and confirm the eligibility of the programme(s) for accreditation.

Accreditation Fee: The institution pays the Accreditation Fee.

Evaluation Process: The QAC will distribute the application for accreditation and attached documents to the peer auditor members of the Commission for the evaluation of how each standard is addressed by the applicant education programme. The members of the Commission have to review the application and jointly issue the initial accreditation report.

Notification: The QAC will communicate the results of the initial accreditation report to the applicant institution.
Interview or inspection audit: If deemed necessary, the Peer-Auditors may require an on-site audit including an interview with the appointed representative of the applicant educational institution, faculty and staff, as well as students, and arrange an inspection visit by a peer auditor of the commission. This site inspection is usually scheduled if the material provided by the applicant is inappropriate for a clear judgment, or for on-site investigation about specific standards. The interview or inspection visit objectives, schedule and budget will be settled in advance by the QAC in consultation with the applicant. Usually a one to three day interview or inspection audit will be enough to resolve any concerns. The travel costs and expenses related to the audit and inspection visit will be paid by the applicant educational institution in advance.

Accreditation: The Peer-Auditor will communicate the results of the audit and any recommendations with the other commissioners of QAC. The Commission will review the audit report to resolve any discrepancies that may have occurred during the standards benchmarking. The final outcome of the accreditation audit is communicated with the applicant. QAC will inform the applicant of the conclusions of the accreditation report and will provide suggestions, if applicable. In case that full accreditation is awarded, QAC will issue and send the corresponding accreditation certificate. Accreditation is usually valid four years, during which the accredited institution has to submit an annual Self Assessment Report.

Annual Fee: The accredited institution has to pay the annual fee to QAC.

Re-Accreditation: Re-Accreditation is due during the fourth year for another period of four years.


The QAC will grant accreditation of educational quality to programmes of postsecondary education meeting our standards through a voluntary, non-governmental guided self-evaluation and peer-audit. Accreditation of a programme guarantees that the learning offered in this programme is of uniform and sound quality.

Accreditation is a recognition status granted for a stipulated period to the learning programmes after a QAC evaluation indicates that it meets or exceeds minimum thresholds of educational quality.

Accreditation is both a status and a process. It should provide a public certification of acceptable quality as well as the opportunity and incentive for self-improvement in the learning programmes accredited.

The process of accreditation should provide education institutions with an opportunity for critical self-analysis leading to improvement of quality; for consultation and advice from persons coming from other institutions. This is not only to meet certain standards but also to continuously seek ways in which to enhance the quality of education. Therefore accreditation must be a process in different steps: the nine stepping-stones of accreditation are:

  1. Development of an Application
  2. Submission of Initial Documentation
  3. Preliminary Review of Initial Documentation
  4. Formative evaluation
  5. Evaluation process
  6. Site Visit
  7. Report Preparation
  8. Accreditation Decisions
  9. Dissemination

The result of the whole accreditation process is an accreditation report accessible by all stakeholders. If accreditation is to be accepted by all parties concerned the process must be completely transparent. The accreditation process is based on the assessment of the program by subject and field specialists based on agreed upon criteria. The application form that is structured in two sections.

  • Section A is focused on institutional information.
  • Section B is focused on the learning programmes.

The Accreditation Process

Eligible Institutions and Programmes

Accreditation focuses on higher education programmes aiming to prepare individuals to achieve competencies and attain the educational qualifications necessary to begin working in a specific occupation as aligned to the UK Qualifications and Credit Framework. An eligible applicant can be any college, university, organisation, institution or company properly authorised to conduct higher education programmes and certification, to award post-secondary degrees, certificates or other higher education diplomas or professional credentials. The applicant institution may submit the application for verification of its accreditation eligibility without paying any fee. Once the QAC confirms the eligible options, the applicant institution is required to pay the corresponding fee.

(i) Outcomes.
(ii) Resources.
(iii) Support.
(iv) Selling and Student Recruitment.
(v) Providers.
(vi) Collaborative Provision

(i) Designation of the award or qualification.
(ii) Name of programme.
(iii) Number and type of credits for the award.
(iv) Mode(s) of delivery, full-time, part-time, open learning, distance learning, e-learning.
(v) Campus/e-learning platform where programme is provided.
(vi) Academic responsibility for delivery of the programme.
(vii) Does the programme have official and/or national recognition?
(viii) Joint or double degrees.
(ix) Faculty standards.
(x) Number of students graduating/achieving the award.
(xi) Student data for each programme.

OPTION 1- IAU listed Universities and Colleges.

This option is only available to recognised Universities as per the UNESCO International Association of Universities list. The applicant institution must be listed in the IAU Handbook. This modality is a fast-track accreditation process by recognition of programmes and qualifications alignment to the UK Qualifications and Credit Framework.

Universities listed by the IAU may be eligible for the fast-track accreditation of their programmes and courses given that their programmes meet the corresponding requirements. The UK universities and recognised bodies with degree awarding authority enjoy full programmatic autonomy and validation rights, constituting the graduate and postgraduate UK Qualifications and Credit Framework, hence, they are by virtue recognised and accredited by QAC.

OPTION 2- Recognised programmes.

This option is only available to non IAU listed college and university providers of programmes being nationally or regionally or professionally recognised in the country of origin, or in case the programme or institution is accredited by an internationally recognised accreditation body or commission, and whose certification QAC evaluates as similar or equivalent to the UK Qualifications and Credit Framework. Such programmes may include professional as well as credit-granting higher education programmes approved and resulting in a diploma, certificate or degree.

OPTION 3- QAC Programme Accreditation.

Any education provider seeking programme accreditation by the QAC must demonstrate through the application and self assessment report that it meets the QAC standards. Providers who are not eligible for option 1 or 2 above can apply for programme accreditation by QAC.

Procedure for Evaluation Request

Procedure for Evaluation of Requests for Accreditation of Learning Programmes at Education & Training Providers
(Revised 26 March 2011)

Application for Accreditation

The Quality Assurance Commission will not initiate any accreditation process without the QAC application form properly returned. The Quality Assurance Commission has designed an application form for accreditation that guides the applicant institution in the conduct of the Self Study Report as well as the required documentary evidence. The application is a legally binding agreement between QAC and the applicant institution stating the rights and obligations of both parties. The applicant may download and print this application for accreditation, then fill it out and return it out to QAC.

The following 7-step procedure is applicable to all requests seeking accreditation for new programmes at education institutions.


Documentary Evidence & Clarifications

1- Receiving the Request

1.1 To be received at QAC prior to the next commencement, for which it is proposed to start. Request is recorded in the database of the new requests.

2- Request complete administratively

2.1 Submitted on “Form QAC”, for learning programs, signed and dated.
2.2 Submitted on “Form QAC”, for institutions, signed and dated.
2.3 All listed documents in the Forms attached.
2.4 Two copies—hard and electronic—of the request are submitted.
2.5 Relevant licensing and accreditation fees are transferred to QAC’s bank account.
2.6 Requests submitted by stipulated date and not completed administratively by date of the following year are dropped from the database, and have to re-apply.

3- Evaluation of Request

3.1 In-house evaluation by the relevant “Specialization Coordinator”.
3.2 Send request to an internal (within Malaysia) evaluator.
3.3 Send request to an external (within UK) evaluator.
3.4 Specify 3 weeks for the submission of evaluations.
3.5 Requests are sent under the cover of a Standard Letter.

4- Follow-up of

4.1 Send evaluations (blind) to the initiator (s) of the request, for follow-up and revisions.
4.2 Grant a period 3-4 weeks to submit required revisions.
4.3 Review evaluations by the relevant “Specialization Coordinator” at QAC.
4.4 If recommendations are contradictory, send the entire file to the QAC Council member who specializes in the same field, for opinion.

5- Site Visit

5.1 Not required for every request. If the information submitted not clear, or accurate, or persuasive, etc., the Chief Executive arranges for a Site Visit.
5.2 A Site Visit Team of 2-3 is composed, generally, of the Chief Executive, the “Chief Assessor” and an external specialist in the field.
5.3 The time for the Site Visit is arranged with the relevant institution.
5.4 The purpose of the Site Visit is communicated in writing to the relevant institution.
5.5 The “Section Head” prepares a Site Visit Report, which becomes an integral part of the evaluations.

6- Decision

6.1 Send all evaluations to QAC Board, accompanied with a summary of main conclusions, using the “Decision-Taking Form”.
6.2 Place a copy of all requests under discussion on QAC website, with restricted access to Board members, for ease of reference.
6.3 QAC Board discusses all requests ready for decision, in one or more special Council sessions for this purpose. The decisions and conditionality are recorded on the “Decision-Taking Form”, which gets signed by the Chief Executive of QAC.
6.4 The Chief Executive arranges for a special session with the Commissioner General, to review the decisions and issue the appropriate letters, signed by the Commissioner General.

7- Dissemination

7.1 QAC updates the “Audit Report”, including the new decisions.


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