ALCUCOA 3RD REGIONAL CONSULTATION
NCR CALABARZON MIMAROPA REGION V
Ninety seven participants from 26 Local Colleges and Universities (LCUs) attended the ALCUCOA 3rd Regional Consultation held at Tagaytay International Convention Center, last July 21-22, 2014. Registration started at 7:00 AM. Late registration continued until the afternoon of Day 1 to accommodate attendees coming from the regions affected by typhoon "Glenda".
Ongoing registration included participants' profiling.
The program started at 9:00 AM with an invocation led by Prof. Narciso E. Quesada, followed by the singing of the National Anthem and Association of Local Colleges and Universities (ALCU) Hymn.
Dr. Lorna Penales, Dean of Tagaytay City College gave a warm welcome and reminded participants that the presence of "great minds" to such significant event is with a purpose.
To set the tone for the two day regional consultation, Dr. Raymundo P. Arcega, President of ALCUCOA and EVP of UMak, emphasized the objectives for the regional consultation. First, the need for the accreditation instrument to be compliant with the outcomes-based education curriculum as set by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED); second, the institutionalization for academic excellence, and lastly, sustaining transformation keeping in mind the following features: the changing environment; success is not permanent; old rules do not apply; and the need for learners to adapt, to learn, and be creative in order to succeed.
Dr. Elena E. Presnedi. Treasurer of ALCUCOA and President of Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Muntinlupa, introduced the 97 participants coming from the four regions, namely: National Capital Region, CALABARZON, MIMAROPA and Region V. The number of participants represents the association of 26 LCUs.
Tagaytay City College Administrator, Mr. Edgardo T. Castillo, delivered the inspirational message accentuating the bayanihan spirit- the collective effort of its people in facing environmental, social, and political challenges that come and go. Further, the speaker pointed out that "Education is a top priority" of Tagaytay's basic services to its people. Thus, he underscored two distinguishing features: First, the "child friendly" school environment; and the "zero cash out in school matriculation" of students in Tagaytay. Indeed, a remarkable social responsibility.
In his talk "At The Cusp of Educational Reform", Prof. Tomas B. Lopez, Jr., President of UMak and ALCU, emphasized the constant evolution of school purposes vis a vis a universal single accreditation instrument. According to the speaker, every governance structure, which is the defining feature of every single LCU, must be taken into account in the instrument improvement.
Diversity in terms of visions, mission, goals, expectations, educational philosophies, and eventually learning outcomes calls for Being Different!! Prof. Lopez emphatically pointed out that accreditation instrument must therefore focus and concentrate on the outcomes schools have been designed.
Former ALCUCOA President, Prof. Adelina Patriarca, presented the Analytical Framework of Outcomes-Based Education. The speaker prompted teachers to incorporate outcomes-based education principles in planning, implementing and assessing curricular programs. Among the highlights of the talk were the appropriateness in the statement of learning objectives vis a vis learners' capabilities and course learning outcomes; the application of learner-centered approach in the teaching and learning process; and the validity and reliability of instruments to measure the extent of students' learning.
The question on appropriateness, fairness, and applicability of one standard accreditation instrument across colleges and universities was obviously a shared concern and issue among school heads. Varying types of educational institutions in terms of functions, organizational profiles, learning resources, contextual settings accordingly necessitate for a custom fit accreditation instrument.
One school leader in fact made a suggestion that "Every educational institution develops its own accreditation instrument." Be that as it may, Dr. Raymundo Arcega emphasized the importance of curricular programs to be duly certified by CHED as a precursor for accreditation.
In the same manner, Dr. Dalisay Brawner, came up with a suggestion to develop "equivalences" on the various areas of the accreditation instrument to accommodate the differentiated types of educational institutions and its defining features.
Dr. Leah Li V. Echiverri made a suggestion on the proposed Outcomes-Based Education conceptual framework. To address the issue on endemic curricular mismatch, the inclusion of the needs and demands of stakeholders such as the learners, parents, industry partners, community and political leaders, accrediting and governing agencies are to be reflected on the conceptual framework. Program outcomes should be responsive and relevant to its clientele.
Lastly, Engr. Luke Ivan Moro raised concern regarding the credibility and impartiality of ALCUCOA evaluation. Taking into consideration the affiliation of accreditors who are the accreditors' themselves, the question on objectivity and favorable assessment can be undermined.
Six areas of the Accreditation Instrument were discussed in the afternoon of Day 1. Area 1- Administration and Governance; Area 2- Faculty; and Area 3 – Curriculum and Instruction were discussed by Dr. Elizabeth G. Montero.
Then, Area 4 – Student Development and Services, Area 5 – Entrepreneurship and Employability, and Area 6 – Community Extension Service were presented by Dr. Elena E. Presnedi. Both speakers are ALCUCOA Board Members.
Participants shared their input in interest group. An area specialist was assigned to lead, guide and facilitate the group discussion. Likewise, a documenter from each area recorded the participants' critique, observation, suggestion and recommendation.
Dr. Rene Colocor presented the remaining areas of the accreditation instrument in the morning of Day 2 namely: Area 7 - Research; Area 8- Library; Area 9 – Laboratories; and Area 10 – Physical Plant.
A breakout session covering the remaining areas followed.
One of the important outcomes expected from said event is the collection of input from the participants' great minds. Thus, the presentation of workshop output by area was the highlight in Day 2. Recommendations, comments, observations, and suggestions were well noted. The improvement of the accreditation instrument hinges on the integration of the participants' input.
In the afternoon of Day 2, the group had the privilege to receive first hand information on the recent pardigm shift in Higher Education from the keynote speaker, Dr. Emmylou B. Yanga, Director IV of CHED Regional Office IV-A.
The speaker's talk focused on the "New thrust on General Education Curriculum ". The following key points were featured:
- Goals and Context of General Education Curriculum (GEC);
- General Education Outcomes, and the
- Revised Core Courses of GEC.
In summary, the speaker's message underscored that the holistic development of the person takes place in overlapping realms; knowing the self, the Filipino society and nation, and the global community and how these intersect, are the goals of general education.
During the open forum, Dr. Dalisay Brawner's concern was directed on how long will Baccalaureate degree programs run or operate to finish keeping in mind the varying academic calendar year of eduational institutions where some run on a semestral basis, while others operate either on a trimester or quarterly basis?
Whereas, Dr. Leah Li Echiverri's inquiry focused on the horizontal and vertical articulation of the GE subjects of baccalaureate degree programs. Will GE subjects be all offered at the first year level or can it be spread out through the number of years the degree program can be completed?
A follow up concern regarding the conceptual framework being used by CHED as the model in the development of Outcomes Based Education curricular programs was also brought out.
On the issue raised regarding "meeting CHED's minimum requirements and standards", the speaker explained the difference between CHED recognition and certificate of complaince. Hence, the speaker encouraged educational institutions to be proactive when it comes to CHED's role as a monitoring and governing agency. In closing, the speaker pointed out…..CHED is not here to be watchdogs; but CHED is here to develop educational institutions!
Furthermore, valuable information from Dr. Adelina Patriarca provided the inspiration for LCUs toward ALCUCOA accreditation. As cited, Non Board Degree Programs of accredited educational institutions are exempted from IQUAME.
The two day regional consultation ended with the distribution of certificates and cluster picture taking. (Write up by : Dr. Leah Li V. Echiverri; Photos by: Rhumel L. Abang)