ALCUCOA Accreditors' Certification Training at University of Makati
The Accreditors' Certification Training course was held over two days - July 5-6, 2014 at University of Makati (UMak). It marked the beginning of the Association of Local and Colleges and Universities - Commission on Accreditation (ALCUCOA) kick off advocacy towards academic excellence, the hall mark of Outcomes Based Quality Assurance (OBQA). The ALCUCOA Board of Directors*, firmly steered the course in the direction set by the governing agencies Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and National Network of Quality Assurance Agencies (NNQAA), Inc.
In the morning of Day 1, the keynote speaker , Dr. Manuel T. Corpus, Executive Director of the Accrediting Agency of Chartered Colleges and Universities in the Philippines (AACCUP) talked about the legitimacy of AACCUP and ALCOCOA, the nature of accreditation and the the benefits and uses of accreditation.
In a nutshell the talk highlighted "The Accreditation - Its Process and Impact; The NNQAA and AACCUP Experience". The best practices and wisdom shared by Dr. Manuel T. Corpus clearly demonstrated his long and deep engagement in quality assurance.
In the afternoon, Prof. Tomas B. Lopez, Jr., President of Umak and the ALCU (the Association of Local Colleges and Universities), presented to the group the inevitable changing global, national and local landscape in which every educational institution operates. From that perspective, the speaker challenged the school leaders and future accreditors to be sensitive to the peculiar characteristics of every school setting in the conduct of administration and accreditation. In fact, the heart of Professor Lopez's talk encouraged everyone to think outside the box and to develop differentiated accreditation systems. A contextualized mechanism is essential for accrediting agencies if they are to be responsive and relevant in every educational setting. According to the UMak president, the one size fits all approach does not work anymore!
The second speaker, Dr. Elizabeth A. Montero enlightened the group on CHED's invitation to ALCUCOA as partners in quality assurance towards the common goal of excellence. The talk covered the scope of the accreditation system by coming up with the ACCREDITATION acronym. Active process, Choice, Collective effort, Review, Evidenced-based, Data driven, Inclusive growth, Tools, Assessment, Transformation, Investment, Outcomes base.
Also, VP Elizabeth Montero described the attributes of an ACCREDITOR with an acronym - Assets, Credible, Committed, Responsible, Energetic, Dynamic, Impartial, Team player, Objective, Representative. The central point of the speaker's talk was a survey of the following areas: Area I - Governance and Administration; Area II - Faculty; Area III- Curriculum and Instruction; Area IV - Student Development Services, and Area V - Entrepreneurship and Employability.
Dr. Adelina Patriarca, former ALCUCOA President, presented the remaining half of the survey, namely: Area VI- Community Extension Service, Area VII-Research, Area VIII- Library, Area IX- Laboratories and Area X- Physical Plant.
The highlight of day 2 was the break out sessions, allowing participants' to contribute their input on the 10 areas of the accreditation survey. The groups' discussion did not only focus on validating and critiquing the existing indicators, but also on sharing the best practices each LCU can contribute for the refinement and improvement of the instrument survey. To conclude this session, the participant groups each presented their ideas to the whole group.
During the open forum some concerns were expressed on the appropriateness of the likert scale response options vis a vis the statement of given indicators. Also mentioned was the dominance of input based indicators alongside the outcomes based quality assurance direction set by CHED. Although rubric calibration across the ten areas to justify the objectivity in assessment was not spared, it's weight distribution was nevertheless questioned by the actively involved 58 participants that represented 13 LCUs.
The certification training ended with the ever dynamic and charming prime mover ALCUCOA president, Dr. Raymundo Arcega challenging and inspirational message... to keep on moving... to keep on pursuing.
Good, better, best...
never let it rest,
until your good becomes better
and your better becomes best!
Write up by Dr. Leah Li V. Echiverri
Photos by Ms. Amabel Yanson