What is an Accreditation?
An accreditation is the recognition made by external evaluators that the institution and/ or a specific academic program is doing everything necessary so that its students become skilled professionals with the necessary competencies so as to meet the needs of the market.
A program accreditation as well as the University’s institutional accreditation is a national and international recognition that reaches its students, –since it gives the University a higher recognition in the market– and also proves that the University’s education is adequate and meets society´s needs. Moreover, it facilitates international agreements with other institutions of the same quality and standing.
What is the Accreditation Process like?
The first step in an accreditation process is a self-study, which implies that the University or program evaluates its current education quality and defines where it wants to be. Based on that diagnosis, the institution establishes an improvement in order to reach that goal.
What is a Self-Study?
It is an internal evaluation carried out by the institution, which contributes to the improvement process and to the quality of its services. It aims at identifying the strengths and opportunities for improvement through an analysis of the academic processes by using performance indicators.
Who Grants Accreditation?
Globally, there are several entities devoted to providing quality accreditations or certifications to certain specialization programs. All universities and institutions have the right to choose any accrediting agency to evaluate each of their academic programs and programs.
In 2009, the Council for Assessment, Accreditation and Certification of Higher Education Quality (CONEAU, in Spanish) created the standards of the Quality Model for Accreditation of Professional University Programs. This model is a process control tool implemented by CONEAU for the accreditation of different university academic programs. In addition, this Council is directly responsible for granting certification for institutional accreditation, which is given to a university as a whole and not by academic programs.
The Ministry of Education demands that all Education and Health Sciences (Medicine, Nursing, Obstetrics, Medical Technology, Pharmacy and Biochemistry, and Biological Sciences) academic programs in Peru be accredited, and recommends accreditation for other specialty academic programs as well.