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    Second Edition

  • 8/8/2019 COPIA 2nd Edition



    Code of Practice for Institutional Audit

    First Published June 2008Second Edition February 2009

    ISBN 978-983-44015-0-4

    2009 Agensi Kelayakan Malaysia (Malaysian Qualifcations Agency, MQA)

    Level 14B, Menara PKNS-PJNo. 17, Jalan Yong Shook Lin46050 Petaling JayaSelangor Darul EhsanMalaysia

    Tel: +603 7968 7002Fax: +603 7956 9496

    [email protected]

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    Foreword to the First Edition vii

    Glossary ix

    Abbreviations xiList o Tables xii

    Section 1: An Overview o Quality Assurance o Malaysian

    Higher Education


    1. The Malaysian Qualications Agency 3

    2. The Council o Malaysian Qualications Agency 3

    3. Committees 4

    3.1 The Accreditation Committees3.2 The Institutional Audit Committee

    3.3 The Equivalency Committee

    3.4 The Standards Committees

    4. The Malaysian Qualications Framework 5

    5. Approaches to Quality Assurance 6

    6. The Malaysian Qualications Register 6

    7. The Quality Assurance Guidelines 7

    7.1 Quality Assurance Documents

    7.2 Areas o Evaluation

    8. Programme Accreditation 8

    8.1 The Accreditation Report

    8.2 The Accreditation Summary Report

    9. Institutional Audit 9

    9.1 Report to the Higher Education Provider: Continual Quality


    9.2 Report to the Ministry o Higher Education

    9.3 Report or the Public

    Section 2: Guidelines on Criteria and Standards or Higher

    Education Providers


    Area 1: Vision, Mission, Education Goals and Learning Outcomes 15

    1.1 Statement o Vision, Mission and Educational Goals

    1.2 Participation in the Formulation o Vision, Mission and

    Educational Goals

    1.3 Academic Autonomy

    1.4 Learning Outcomes

    Area 2: Curriculum Design and Delivery 182.1 Curriculum Design and Teaching-Learning Methods

    List of Contents

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    2.2 Curriculum Content and Structure

    2.3 Management o Programmes

    2.4 Linkages with External StakeholdersArea 3: Assessment o Students 21

    3.1 Relationship Between Assessment and Learning

    3.2 Assessment Methods

    3.3 Management o Student Assessment

    Area 4: Student Selection and Support Services 23

    4.1 Admission and Selection

    4.2 Articulation Regulations, Credit Transer and Credit Exemption

    4.3 Transer o Students

    4.4 Student Support Services and Co-Curricular Activities4.5 Student Representation and Participation

    4.6 Alumni

    Area 5: Academic Sta 28

    5.1 Recruitment and Management

    5.2 Service and Development

    Area 6: Educational Resources 30

    6.1 Physical Facilities

    6.2 Research and Development

    6.3 Educational Expertise

    6.4 Educational Exchanges

    6.5 Financial Allocation

    Area 7: Programme Monitoring and Review 34

    7.1 Mechanisms or Programme Monitoring and Review

    7.2 Involvement o Stakeholders

    Area 8: Leadership, Governance and Administration 36

    8.1 Governance

    8.2 Institutional and Academic Leadership

    8.3 Administrative and Management Sta

    8.4 Academic Records

    8.5 Interaction with External Sectors

    Area 9: Continual Quality Improvement 39

    9.1 Quality Improvement

    Section 3: Submission or Institutional Audit


    3.1 The Documentation Required 43

    Part A: General Inormation About the Higher Education Provider 45

    Part B: Inormation on the Nine Areas o Evaluation or Quality Assurance 50Part C: Sel-Review Report 77

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    Section 4: The Institutional Audit


    4.1 The Internal Quality Audit 81

    4.1.1 The Internal Quality Audit Task Force

    4.1.2 Data Collection

    4.1.3 The Sel-Review Portolio (SRP)

    4.2 Institutional Audit: The External Audit 83

    4.2.1 The Role Players

    4.2.2 Support Facilities

    4.2.3 The Audit Timeline

    4.2.4 The Audit Management Meeting

    4.2.5 The Preparatory Meeting4.2.6 The Planning Visit

    4.2.7 The Audit Visit

    4.2.8 The Oral Exit Report

    4.2.9 The Drat Institutional Audit Report

    4.2.10 The Institutional Audit Report

    4.2.11 Findings and Judgments

    4.2.12 Appeal

    4.2.13 Follow Up

    Section 5: The Panel o Auditors


    5.1 Appointment o the Members o an Audit Panel 99

    5.1.1 Personal and General Attributes o Auditors

    5.1.2 Responsibilities o the Auditors

    5.2 Confict o Interest 101

    5.3 The Audit Panel 102

    5.3.1 The Chairperson

    5.3.2 The Secretary

    5.3.3 The MQA Ocer

    5.4 The Audit Trail 104

    5.4.1 Beore the Audit Visit

    5.4.2 Preparatory Meeting

    5.4.3 During the Audit Visit

    5.4.4 Ater the Audit Visit

    5.5 The Institutional Audit Report 109

    Section 6: Guidelines or Preparing the Institutional Audit Report

    INTRODUCTION 1131. The Cover Page 113

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    2. Table o Contents 113

    3. Memorandum 113

    4. Introduction and Composition o the Audit Panel 1145. Abstract 114

    6. Summary o Panel o Auditors Findings 115

    7. Previous Quality Assurance or Accreditation Assessments and Progress 117


    8. The Sel-Review Portolio 117

    9. Background o the Higher Education Provider 117

    10. Report on the Higher Education Provider in Relation to the Nine Areas 117

    o Evaluation


    Appendix 1: The Quality Assurance Process: An Overview 141

    Appendix 2: General Comparison o Programme Accreditation and 143

    Institutional Audit Process

    Appendix 3: Flow Chart or Institutional Audit Process 145

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    Foreword to the First Edition

    The National Accreditation Board (Lembaga Akreditasi Negara, LAN) was established in

    1997 to quality assure private higher education in Malaysia. Quality assurance o public

    higher education institutions was entrusted to the Quality Assurance Division (QAD) othe Ministry o Higher Education. In 2005, the Malaysian Cabinet decided to merge LAN

    and QAD into a single quality assurance body. Thus, the Malaysian Qualications Agency

    (MQA) was born under the Malaysian Qualications Agency Act 2007. Concurrently, the

    Malaysian Qualications Framework (MQF) was developed to uniy and harmonise all

    Malaysian qualications.

    This development is in line with Malaysias long term development plans as well as the

    Ministry o Higher Educations aspiration or the transormation o higher education

    in the country. These refect a maturing Malaysian higher education system that

    encourages providers to adopt a more systematic and holistic approach in the provision oquality education.

    Assigned the task to ensure quality in higher education in the spirit o the MQF, the MQA

    has developed a series o guidelines, standards and codes o practice to assist the higher

    education providers enhance their academic perormance and institutional eectiveness.

    Key among these are the Code o Practice or Programme Accreditation (COPPA) and

    Code o Practice or Institutional Audit(COPIA).

    COPPA and COPIA are intended to be useul guides or providers o higher education,

    quality assurance auditors, ocers o the MQA, policy makers, proessional bodiesand other stakeholders engaged in higher education. The Codes, not only contain an

    overview o the Malaysian quality assurance system or higher education, they also guide

    the reader on the nine areas o evaluation or quality assurance as well as the two levels

    o standards -- benchmarked and enhanced standards -- that underline them. In addition,

    the two documents provide guidance or internal quality review to be conducted by the

    institution and external audit to be conducted by the MQAs panel o assessors. They also

    include site visit schedules as well as guidelines on report writing.

    COPPA and COPIA have been developed by bringing together the good practices adopted

    by the QAD and LAN, with inputs rom experts and stakeholders via a series o ocus group

    discussions. They were also benchmarked against international best practices. In doing

    this, reerences have been made to quality assurance practices o MQAs counterparts,

    which include the Quality Assurance Agency or Higher Education (QAA) o the United

    Kingdom, Australian Universities Quality Agency (AUQA), the New Zealand Qualications

    Authority (NZQA), Hong Kong Council or Accreditation o Academic and Vocational

    Qualications (HKCAAVQ), South Arican Qualications Authority (SAQA) and National

    Accreditation and Assessment Council (NAAC) o India.

    Quality assurance is an ongoing process and it is the responsibility o all parties involved.

    Thus, it is o utmost importance or MQA to continuously review its quality assurance

    practices to ensure their relevancy, reliability, adaptability and eectiveness to address

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    the ever changing environment within which higher education operates. The MQA hopes

    that both COPPA and COPIA would assist institutions to enhance their quality provisions

    through the sel-review and internal assessment processes as well as the external auditconducted by the MQA. In the spirit o shared responsibility and balancing the demands

    o autonomy, fexibility and accountability, the MQA looks orward to continuous

    collaboration with all stakeholders in enhancing the quality o higher education

    in Malaysia.

    On behal o the MQA, I wish to extend our sincere appreciation and gratitude to all

    those who have contributed towards the preparation o these Codes o Practice. It is

    our hope that these Codes will serve the purpose o our common endeavour to achieve

    higher education o the highest quality.

    Tan Sri Dato Dr. Muhammad Rais Abdul Karim

    Chairman, Malaysian Qualifcations Agency

    1 June 2008

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    Benchmark Data

    Benchmark data are inormation collected rom other relevant sources to determine how

    others achieve their levels o perormance.

    Formative Assessment

    Formative assessment is the assessment o student progress throughout a course, in which

    the eedback rom the learning activities is used to improve student attainment.

    Good Practices

    Good practices are a set o internationally accepted norms which are expected to be

    ullled to maintain high quality.

    Higher Education Provider (HEP)A higher education provider is a body corporate, organisation or other body o persons

    which conducts higher education or training programmes leading to the award o a

    higher education qualication.

    Institutional Audit

    Institutional Audit is an external evaluation o an institution to determine whether it

    is achieving its mission and goals, to identiy strengths and areas o concern, and to

    enhance quality.

    Internal Quality AuditAn internal quality audit is a sel-review exercise conducted internally by a higher

    education provider to determine whether it is achieving its mission and goals; to identiy

    strengths and areas o concern, and to enhance quality. It generates a Sel-Review Report

    or Institutional Audit.

    Learning Outcomes

    Learning outcomes are statements on what students should know, understand and can

    do upon the completion o a period o study.

    Longitudinal Study

    A longitudinal study involves repeated observations o the same items or phenomena

    over a long period o time.

    Malaysian Qualifcations Framework (MQF)

    The Malaysian Qualications Framework is an instrument that classies qualications based

    on a set o criteria that are approved nationally and benchmarked against international

    best practices.


    Modules are components o a programme. The term modules is used interchangeably

    with subjects, units, or courses.

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    MQF Level

    An MQF level, as described in the Framework, is an award level described with

    generic learning outcomes and qualication descriptors which characterises atypical qualication.


    A programme is a set o modules that are structured or a specied duration and learning

    volume to achieve the stated learning outcomes which usually leads to an award o

    a qualication.

    Programme Accreditation

    Provisional accreditation is an assessment exercise to determine whether aprogramme has met the minimum quality requirements prior to ull accreditation.

    Full accreditation is an assessment exercise to ascertain that the teaching, learning

    and all other related activities o a programme provided by a higher education provider

    has met the quality standards and in compliance with the MQF.

    Quality Assurance

    Quality assurance comprises planned and systematic actions (policies, strategies, attitudes,

    procedures and activities) to provide adequate demonstration that quality is being

    achieved, maintained and enhanced, and meets the specied standards o teaching,scholarship and research as well as student learning experience.

    Quality Enhancement

    Quality enhancement is steps taken to bring about continual improvement in quality.

    Sel-Review Portolio (SRP)

    A Sel-Review Portolio is a portolio generated by an Internal Quality Audit, which is

    submitted to the MQA or the purpose o an Institutional Audit.

    Sel-Review Report (SRR)A Sel-Review Report is a report submitted by a higher education provider to the MQA or

    the purpose o an Institutional Audit that demonstrates whether the higher education

    provider has achieved the quality standards as required in the areas that are evaluated.

    Student Learning Experience

    Student learning experience comprises the entire educational experience o a student

    whilst studying or a Programme.

    Summative Assessment

    Summative assessment is the assessment o learning, which summarises the progress o

    the learner at a particular time and is used to assign the learner a course grade.

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    1. HEP Higher Education Provider

    2. COPIA Code o Practice or Institutional Audit

    3. COPPA Code o Practice or Programme Accreditation

    4. MOHE Ministry o Higher Education

    5. MQA Malaysian Qualications Agency

    6. MQF Malaysian Qualications Framework

    7. MQR Malaysian Qualications Register

    8. SRP Sel-Review Portolio

    9. SRR Sel-Review Report


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    1. Table 1 A typical timeline prior to the audit visit

    2. Table 2 A typical timetable or an audit visit

    3. Table 3 A typical timeline ater the audit visit

    List of Tables

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    Section 1An Overview of Quality Assurance of

    Malaysian Higher Education

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    Section 1 An Overview o Quality Assurance

    o Malaysian Higher Education


    Malaysias vision o its uture advocates the development o a human capital o highestquality. The Ministry o Higher Education (MOHE) has incorporated this vision as one o

    its primary objectives under its Strategic Plan, in line with the national agenda to make

    Malaysia as a preerred centre to pursue higher education.


    In December 2005, the Malaysian Cabinet decided to merge the National Accreditation

    Board (Lembaga Akreditasi Negara, LAN) and the Quality Assurance Division (QAD) o

    the MOHE. This merger created the Malaysian Qualications Agency (MQA), the single

    quality assurance agency in the country, whose scope now covers both the public and

    private Higher Education Providers (HEP).

    The Malaysian Qualications Agency Act 2007 (MQAA 2007) assigns the responsibility

    or quality assuring higher education in Malaysia to the MQA. The responsibilities o the

    MQA are:


    point or Malaysian qualications;

    todevelop,withthecooperationofstakeholders,standardsandcriteriaandinstruments as a national reerence or the conerment o awards;






    assurance in higher education.


    The MQA is headed by a Council. It comprises o a Chairman and 16 members. The

    unctions o the Council are:



    to approve policies and guidelines relating to audit processes and the

    accreditation o programmes, qualications and higher education providers;

    toreceiveandmonitorreports,returns,statementsandanyotherinformationrelating to accreditation, institutional audit and evaluation; and

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    and do all things reasonably necessary or the perormance o its unctions

    under the Act.



    to provide input or policy decisions. These committees consist o resource persons who

    possess in-depth and specialised knowledge and experience in their respective disciplines

    to perorm such duties as prescribed under the MQAA 2007.

    The committees that have been established are:

    3.1 The Accreditation Committees

    There are ve Accreditation Committees covering the major areas o study, i.e.,

    Science and Medicine, Engineering and Built Environment, Inormation Technology

    and Multimedia, Arts and Humanities, and the Social Sciences. The Accreditation

    Committees have the ollowing unctions:


    To make decisions on an HEPs application for provisional or fullaccreditation o programmes and qualications, i.e., to grant, deny,

    maintain or revoke provisional accreditation or ull accreditation o

    programmes and qualications.

    3.2 The Institutional Audit Committee

    One o the main unctions o the Agency is to conduct institutional audits or a

    variety o purposes: the procedures o institutional audits may dier according to

    their respective purposes.

    Among the main unctions o the Institutional Audit Committee are:



    institutional sel-accreditation status; and


    o sel-accreditation status.

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    3.3 The Equivalency Committee

    Allprogrammesoffered inMalaysiamust establishtheir level vis-a-vistheMQF.However, there are qualications, within Malaysia or without, whose level in


    Equivalency Committee. The equivalency statement o a qualication is generally

    used or purposes o admission, employment and recognition, although it is not

    necessarily legally binding on the authorities responsible or these.

    The key unction o the Equivalency Committee is to make decisions on the

    equivalency o qualications or their placement in the level o qualications in


    3.4 The Standards Committees

    Standards is an essential component in a quality assurance system to determine

    the expected level of attainment of quality. From time to time, theMQAwill

    establish standards committees, both permanent and ad hoc, consisting o experts

    in the various disciplines o study. The members o the committees come rom the

    academe, proessional bodies and industry. The guidelines, standards and criteria

    are developed in consultation with principal stakeholders and various ocus groups

    and approved by the Council o the MQA.

    The main unctions o the Standards Committees are:

    to develop and review the guidelines, standards and criteria for

    programme accreditation and institutional audit;





    higher education and as the reerence point or national qualications. It is an instrument

    that classies qualications based on international best practices and on a set o criteria

    that are approved nationally. These agreed upon criteria are used or all qualications


    learning outcomes and credit systems based on student academic load. The MQF

    integrates all national qualications and provides educational pathways through which

    it links qualications systematically. These pathways will enable the individual learner to

    progress through credit transers and accreditation o prior experiential learning in thecontext o lielong learning.

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    The work o the MQA revolves around two major approaches to quality assure highereducation in Malaysia. The rst approach is to accredit programmes and qualications.

    The second is to audit institutions or their components. The two are distinct approaches

    but highly interrelated.

    There are two levels in programme accreditation. The rst level is Provisional Accreditation

    which indicates that the programme has ullled the minimum requirement or it to be

    oered. This level is connected to seeking approval rom the MOHE to conduct a new


    that a programme has met all the criteria and standards set or that purpose and in


    Institutional Audit takes many orms. It could be comprehensive or thematic; it could be

    by aculty or across aculties. It could take the orm o a periodic academic perormance

    audit on institutions o higher learning or an assessment to determine the continuation or

    maintenance o programme accreditation status. It could take the orm o an exercise or

    purposes o veriying data, or purposes o public policy input or or rating and ranking

    o institutions and programmes.

    The highest orm o institutional audit is the sel-accreditation audit, which can lead

    to a conerment o a sel-accreditation status or the institution so audited, whereby

    the institution can accredit its own programmes. Sometimes called a system audit,

    the institutional audit or purposes o sel-accreditation ocuses on the capacity and

    capability o the internal quality assurance system o an institution to evaluate academic

    programmes that it oers. In a sense, a sel-accreditation audit is an exercise in accrediting

    the internal quality assurance system o the institution.

    The various approaches to quality assurance processes include periodic monitoring to

    ensure that quality is maintained and continuously enhanced.


    The Malaysian Qualications Register (MQR) is a registry of all higher education


    programmes, providers, levels and validity periods o accreditation o these qualications.

    It is meant to provide students, parents, employers, unding agencies and other related


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    7.1 Quality Assurance Documents

    The quality assurance evaluation conducted by the MQA would be guided by:






    The Code o Practice or Institutional Audit(COPIA) is adapted rom the Code o

    Practice or Quality Assurance in Public Universities o Malaysia (2002) published by

    the Quality Assurance Division o the Ministry o Higher Education. In addition, the

    Lembaga Akreditasi Negara (National Accreditation Board) -- the predecessor to the

    MQA -- had a series o guidelines or programme accreditation and good practices

    which MQA will continue to utilise to complement COPIA. MQA will continue to

    develop programme standards and guides to good practices to cover the whole

    range o disciplines and good practices. It will also review them periodically to

    ensure their relevance and currency.

    This Code o Practice or Institutional Audit(COPIA), guides the HEP and the MQA in

    auditing higher education institutions. Unlike the Code o Practice or Programme

    Accreditation (COPPA), COPIA is dedicated to review institutions o higher learning

    or specic purposes through comprehensive institutional and thematic audits. Both

    COPPA and COPIA utilise a similar nine areas o evaluation or quality assurance.

    7.2 Areas o Evaluation

    The quality evaluation process covers the ollowing nine areas:










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    Each o these nine areas contains quality standards and criteria. These standards

    and criteria have two distinct levels, i.e., benchmarked standards and enhanced

    standards. The degree o compliance to these nine areas o evaluation (and thestandards accompanying them) expected o the HEP depends on the type and level

    o assessment.


    specied purpose. However, in the current stage o the development o Malaysian

    higher education and its quality assurance processes, there is a need to ensure that

    the HEPs ull all the benchmarked standards. Nevertheless, the diversity o the

    institutions and their programmes call or fexibility wherever appropriate. Where

    necessary, when preparing their documents or submission to the MQA, the HEPs

    may need to provide additional inormation to explain why certain standards arenot applicable to their case.


    Programme accreditation is an assessment exercise, conducted by peers, to ascertain

    whether a programme has satised the expected quality standards.



    The purpose o Provisional Accreditation is to establish whether a programme has met

    the minimum requirements in respect o the nine areas o evaluation or it to be oered

    by the HEP. Where necessary, a visit may be conducted to conrm the arrangement or the

    suitability o the acilities at the HEP premises.

    The evaluation is conducted by MQAs Panel o Assessors (POA) and its ndings are tabled

    at the respective Accreditation Committee or its decision. The HEP uses the Provisional

    Accreditation report as one o the requirements to seek approval rom the MOHE to oer

    the programme, and, on obtaining it, to commence the programme.


    setofstandardsforFullAccreditationasstipulatedintheCode o Practice or Programme


    external, peer and independent assessment conducted by MQA through its POA, who

    would evaluate the Programme Information and Self-Review Report submitted by

    the HEP.

    The panel would also make an evaluation visit to the institution. This site visit is to validate

    and veriy the inormation urnished by the HEP.

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    The panel will then submit the nal report to the MQA, to be then tabled to the respective

    Accreditation Committee or its nal decision.

    8.1 The Accreditation Report

    In the whole accreditation exercise, the eedback processes between the Agency

    and the HEP are communicated through the panels oral exit report and written


    will be made available to the HEP concerned. The most important purpose o the



    context and allows comparison over time. It discerns strengths and areas o concern

    as well as provides specic recommendations or quality enhancement in the

    structure and perormance o the HEP, based on peer experience and the consensus

    on quality as embodied in the standards.

    I the HEP ails to achieve the accreditation o a programme, the MQA will inorm the

    relevant authority accordingly or its necessary action. In the case o a maintenance

    audit or programmes already accredited, the cessation date shall be eected on


    8.2 The Accreditation Summary Report

    A summary o the nal evaluation report o the Panel is accessible to the public.

    The report contains inormation that would be helpul to prospective students,

    parents, unding agencies and employers.

    Accreditation adds value to a programme and qualication. It enhances public

    condence and can become a basis or recognition nationally and internationally.

    The accreditation reports can be used or benchmarking and or revising quality

    standards and practices. Benchmarking ocuses on how to improve the educationalprocesses by exploiting the best practices adopted by institutions around

    the world.



    quality audit) and the MQA Institutional Audit (external quality audit).

    The sel-review is done by the institution and is the key component o the documentsubmitted to the MQA or evaluation by the Audit Panel.

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    The institutional audit is an external and independent peer audit conducted by MQA

    through a panel o auditors, who would evaluate the sel-review as well as visit the

    institution to validate and veriy inormation given by the HEP and submit the nal reportto the MQA.

    In programme accreditation, there is an element o auditing in the orm o Programme

    Maintenance Audit, whose purpose is to ensure the continuous maintenance and

    enhancement o programmes that have been accredited. The Programme Maintenance

    Audit is crucial given that the accredited status o a programme is perpetual, i.e., without

    an expiry provision. Programme Maintenance Audit, which applies to all accredited

    programmes and qualications, must be carried out at least once in three years.

    9.1 Report to the Higher Education Provider: ContinualQuality Improvement


    improvement o the HEP. The eedback processes in the orm o the oral exit reports

    and written reports promote accountability and reinorce the continual quality

    improvement process by validating the HEPs strengths and areas o concern.

    The written report is narrative and aims to be inormative. It is contextual to allow

    comparison over time. It highlights strengths and concerns as well as provides

    recommendations or quality improvement.

    9.2 Report to the Ministry o Higher Education


    where it can be used or policy decisions to assist HEPs improve their quality and

    standards, and, in the case o sel-accrediting application, or granting sel-

    accreditation status.

    9.3 Report or the Public

    A summary report is made accessible to the public. The report contains inormation that

    would be helpul to prospective students, parents, unding agencies and employers.

    The quality assurance reports can be used or benchmarking and or revising quality

    standards and practices. Benchmarking ocuses on how to improve the educational

    processes through adopting the best approaches practised by renowned institutions

    o higher education around the world. Adopting best practices provides the HEP the

    opportunity to gain strategic, operational and nancial advantage.

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    Section 2Guidelines on Criteria and Standards

    for Higher Education Providers

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    Section 2 GuidelinesonCriteriaandStandards

    or Higher Education Providers


    The guidelines on criteria and standards or higher education recommend practices thatare in line with internationally recognised good practices. These guidelines are aimed

    at helping Higher Education Providers (HEP) attain at least benchmarked standards in

    each aspect o higher education and to stimulate them to continuously improve their

    programmes. All these are in support o the national aspiration o making Malaysia the

    centre or educational excellence.

    The guidelines are designed to encourage diversity o approach that is compatible with

    national and global human resources requirements. The guidelines dene standards or

    higher education in broad terms, within which individual HEPs can creatively design their

    programmes o study and to appropriately allocate resources in accordance with their

    stated vision, mission, educational goals and learning outcomes.

    Like COPPA, COPIA also utilises the nine areas o evaluation, i.e.:

    1. Vision,mission,educationalgoalsandlearningoutcomes;

    2. Curriculum design and delivery;

    3. Assessment o students;

    4. Student selection and support services;

    5. Academic sta;

    6. Educational resources;

    7. Programme monitoring and review;

    8. Leadership, governance and administration; and

    9. Continual quality improvement.


    example, the item on the larger vision o the institution is crucial at the institutional level,

    as compared to its t when conducting a programme accreditation in which it is more

    directed to see how a specic programme supports the larger institutional vision. Similarly,

    when COPIA talks about curriculum design its perspective is largely about institutionalpolicies, structures, processes and practices related to curriculum development across

    the institution. In COPPA, it reers specically to description, content and delivery o a

    particular programme.

    The standards in each o these nine areas dene the expected level o attainment or

    each criterion within them, and serve as a perormance indicator. Standards are specied

    at two levels o attainment: benchmarked standard and enhanced standard.

    Benchmarked standards are standards that must be met and its compliance demonstrated

    during an institutional audit. These are minimum standards expected o an institution ohigherlearning.Generally,institutionsofhigherlearningareexpectedtofullallthe

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    benchmarked standards. However, some o these standards may not be applicable to

    certain institutions or in certain situations, or which the institution involved must justiy

    this exception. Benchmarked standards are expressed as a must.

    Enhanced standards are standards that should be met as the institution strives to

    continuously improve itsel. Enhanced standards refect international and national

    consensus on good practices in higher education. HEPs should be able to demonstrate

    achievement o some or all o these or that initiatives toward the achievement o these

    standards are underway. Achievement o these standards will vary with the stage o

    development o the HEPs, their resources and policies. Enhanced standards are expressed

    by a should.

    The use o two levels o standards recognises the act that HEPs are at dierent stages odevelopment and emphasises that quality improvement is a continual process. Enhanced

    standards, in particular, allow fexibility and recognise diversity to acilitate the creative

    growth o education.

    In the remaining pages o this chapter, specic criteria o the standards are spelt out or

    each o the nine areas o evaluation. These serve as perormance indicators o quality.

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    The vision, mission and goals o education set the direction o an HEP, guide academic

    planning and implementation as well as bring together all members o the institution to

    strive towards a tradition o excellence.

    The vision and mission o an HEP direct and guide all aspects o the institutional existence

    and its uture progress. The larger vision and mission o the HEP provides the oundation

    or the development o all its academic programmes; one must be guided by them when

    designing such programmes.

    The educational goals describe the crucial characteristics o the outcomes and processes

    o higher education that are in keeping with national aspirations and global importance.

    The general goal o higher education is to produce broadly educated individuals

    through the:


    inculcation of attitudes, ethics, sense of professionalism, and leadership

    and citizenship skills or societal advancement within the ramework o the

    national vision;


    make decisions critically and creatively based on evidence and experience; developmentofthequestforknowledgeandlifelonglearningskillsthatare

    essential or continuous upgrading o knowledge and skills that parallel the

    rapid advancement in global knowledge; and

    consideration of other issues that are relevant to the local, national and

    international context.


    1.1 Statement o Vision, Mission and Educational Goals

    1.1.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEP must ormulate educational goals consistent with its vision

    and mission.

    Themissionstatementandeducationalgoalsmust refect the crucial

    elements o the processes and outcomes o higher education that is in

    line with national and global developments.

    The vision, mission, and educational goals must be approved by a

    governing board or other appropriate body whose membership is madeup o those competent to discharge such duties and responsibilities.

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    EveryHEPmust disseminate its vision, mission and educational goals to

    its internal and external stakeholders.

    1.1.2 Enhanced Standards

    The mission and educational goals should encompass leadership

    qualities in the areas o social responsibility, research and scholarly

    attainment, community engagement, ethical values, proessionalism, and

    knowledge creation.

    TheHEPshould demonstrate that its planning and evaluation processes,

    educational programmes, educational support services, nancial and

    physical resources, and administrative processes are adequate and

    appropriate to ull its stated goals.

    1.2 Participation in the Formulation o Vision, Mission andEducational Goals

    1.2.1 Benchmarked Standards

    Thevision,missionandgoalsmust be developed in consultation with

    principal stakeholders which include departments, schools or aculties,

    research centres, governing boards, academic sta, student organisations,

    and administration and management sta.

    1.2.2 Enhanced Standards

    The vision, mission and goals should be periodically reviewed in

    consultation with a wider range o stakeholders that may include the

    community, civil society, international peers, alumni, industry, proessional

    bodies, unding agencies, and the government.

    1.3 Academic Autonomy

    An academic institution is expected to have sucient autonomy over academicmatters. Such autonomy should be refected in its oerings, its scholarly activities

    and its decision-making processes.

    1.3.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEPmust have sucient autonomy to design the curriculum o

    the qualications that it is conerring and to allocate the resources

    necessary or their implementation to ensure the achievement o their

    learning outcomes.

    (Where applicable, this provision must also cover programmes and

    activities conducted in collaboration with others within or outside

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    the country in accordance with national interest and international

    best practices.)

    Theacademicstaffmust be given sucient autonomy to ocus on areaso his expertise, such as curriculum development and implementation,

    academic supervision o students, research and writing, scholarly activities,

    academically-related administrative duties, and community engagement.

    1.3.2 Enhanced Standards

    TheHEPshould strive to expand the boundaries o academic autonomy

    to refect the progression o its intellectual maturity.

    1.4 Learning Outcomes

    The quality o the HEP is ultimately assessed by the ability o its graduates to

    carry out their expected roles and responsibilities in society. This requires a clear

    denition o the competencies that are expected to be achieved by students upon

    completion o a period o study. The ability o the graduate should demonstrate the

    level o competencies as dened by the expected learning outcomes outlined in the


    1.4.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEP must ormulate learning outcomes and educational goals

    consistent with its vision and mission.

    The HEPmust dene the specic competencies that students should

    demonstrate upon completion o the period o study.

    (The competencies include mastery o the body o knowledge; practical

    skills; social skills and responsibility; ethics and proessionalism; scientifc

    method, critical thinking and problem solving; communication skills

    and teamwork; inormation management and lielong learning; and

    entrepreneurship and management.)

    1.4.2 Enhanced Standards

    The HEP should speciy the link between competencies expected

    at completion o studies and those required or career undertakings,

    urther studies and good citizenship.

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    A curriculum denes the body o knowledge and the area o specialisation. The dynamismo the HEP is refected by it keeping abreast with the latest development in the various

    disciplines through an eective relationship between curriculum content and current

    practices in these disciplines as well as by it taking into consideration the current needs

    o an ever changing society.


    2.1 Curriculum Design and Teaching-Learning Methods

    2.1.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheHEPmust have a clearly dened process to establish, review and

    evaluate the curriculum in which the aculty, the administration and the

    governing board plays an active role.

    Allprogrammesmust be considered only ater their needs assessment

    has indicated that there is a need or them to be conducted.

    Allprogrammesmust be considered only ater the resources to support

    them have been identied.

    Theaimsandobjectivesofallprogrammesmust be consistent with, andsupportive o, the HEPs vision and mission.

    TheHEPmust show that the content, approach, and teaching-learning

    methods o the curricula are consistent with, and supportive o, their

    learning outcomes.

    Theremust be a variety o teaching-learning methods in order to achieve

    the eight domains o the learning outcomes and to ensure that students

    take responsibility or their own learning.

    The teaching and learning activities must be consistent with

    the curriculum.

    2.1.2 Enhanced Standards

    The curriculum should encourage multi-disciplinary approaches to

    enhance personal development through electives, study pathways and

    other means which should be monitored and appraised.

    Theneedsanalysis forallprogrammesshould involve eedback rom

    external sources including the market, students, alumni, peers, and

    international experts whose commentaries are utilised or purposes o

    curriculum improvement.

    There should be co-curricular activities that will enrich students

    experiences, and oster personal development and responsibility.

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    2.2 Curriculum Content and Structure

    2.2.1 Benchmarked Standards

    All academic programmes must incorporate the core content o the

    discipline that are essential or understanding the concepts, principles

    and methods that support the programme outcomes.

    Allacademicprogrammesmust ull the requirements o the discipline

    and incorporate topics o local, national and international importance,

    taking into account the appropriate discipline standards and international

    best practices or the eld, as well as changes in them.

    2.2.2 Enhanced Standards

    TheHEPshould establish mechanisms -- through the use o the latest

    technology and through global networking -- to access to real time

    inormation and to identiy up-to-date topics o importance or inclusion

    in the curriculum and its delivery.

    2.3 Management o Programmes

    2.3.1 Benchmarked Standards

    Studentsmust be provided with the most current written inormation

    about the aims, outline, learning outcomes, and methods o assessment

    o programmes oered by the HEP.

    Allprogrammesmust have a coordinator and a team o appropriate

    academic sta (e.g., programme committee or team) that is responsible

    or the planning, implementation, evaluation and improvement o

    the programme.

    Allprogrammeteamsmust have authority and established procedures

    or programme planning and monitoring.

    All programme teams must be given resources to implement the

    teaching-learning activities, and to conduct programme evaluation orquality improvement.

    Allprogrammes--inparticulartheir contentanddelivery --must be

    regularly reviewed and evaluated and the results utilised to assure

    quality. (At level 6 and above of theMQF, the review must involve

    external examiners.)

    TheHEPmust provide a conducive learning environment or its students

    in which scholarly and creative achievements are nurtured.

    TheHEPmust have eective structures and processes when ullling the

    necessary criteria and standards o qualications awarded.

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    2.3.2 Enhanced Standards

    Innovationstoimproveteachingandlearningshould be continuously

    developed, adequately supported, and critically evaluated, in consultationwith principal stakeholders and experts, internally and externally.

    The review and evaluation of programmes should involve external

    expertise nationally and internationally.

    2.4 Linkages with External Stakeholders

    At the operational level, linkages with stakeholders outside o the HEP are crucial

    or identiying, clariying and improving key aspects o programmes and their

    interrelationships in the planning and implementation process. The linkages arebest developed and maintained at local, national, regional and global levels.

    2.4.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEP must have linkages with all external stakeholders at the

    local, national, regional or global levels or the purposes o planning,

    implementing and reviewing its programmes.

    2.4.2 Enhanced Standards

    The HEP should obtain eedback rom employers and utilise the

    inormation or curriculum improvement as well as or purposes o

    student placement, training and workplace exposure.

    The HEPshould acilitate students to develop linkages with external


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    Student assessment is a crucial aspect o quality assurance because it drives studentlearning and it is one o the most important measures to show the achievement o

    learning outcomes. The result o assessment is also the basis in awarding qualications.

    Hence, the methods o assessing students have to be clear, consistent, eective,

    reliable and in line with current practices and must clearly support the achievement

    o learning outcomes.


    3.1 Relationship Between Assessment and Learning

    3.1.1 Benchmarked Standards

    Theprinciples,methodsandpracticesof studentassessmentmust be

    aligned with learning outcomes and the curricula.


    eight domains o learning outcomes and the programme standards.

    3.1.2 Enhanced Standards

    Thelinkbetweenassessmentandprogrammelearningoutcomesshouldbe reviewed periodically to ensure its eectiveness.

    3.2 Assessment Methods

    3.2.1 Benchmarked Standards

    A varietyofmethodsandtoolsmust be used appropriately to assess

    learning outcomes and competencies.

    Assessmentmust be summative and ormative.

    Theremust be mechanisms to ensure the validity, reliability, consistency,currency and airness o the student assessment system.

    Theassessmentmethodsmust be reviewed at appropriate scheduled

    intervals to ensure currency.

    Themethodsofstudentassessment--includingthegradingcriteria --

    must be documented and communicated to students on commencement

    o a programme.

    3.2.2 Enhanced Standards

    The methods of assessing should be comparable to internationalbest practices.

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    Thereviewoftheassessmentmethodsshould incorporate current global

    developments and best practices in the discipline.

    The reviewof theassessment systemshould be done in consultationwith external experts, both locally and internationally.

    3.3 Management o Student Assessment

    The management o the assessment system is directly linked to the HEPs responsibility

    as a body that coners qualications. The robustness and security o the processes

    and procedures related to student assessment are important in inspiring condence

    in the quality o the qualications awarded by the HEP.

    3.3.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheHEPmust provide sucient autonomy to the relevant departments

    in the management o student assessment.

    Studentassessmentresultsmust be communicated to the student within

    reasonable time.

    Changes to student assessment methods must ollow established

    procedures and regulations and communicated to students prior to

    their implementation.

    The programme grading, assessment and appeal policies must

    be publicised.

    There must be mechanisms to ensure the security o assessment

    documents and records.

    3.3.2 Enhanced Standards

    Thereshould be independent external scrutiny to evaluate and improve

    the management o student assessment, including ormal certication

    o the processes.

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    Student admission is governed by policies ormulated by the Ministry o Higher Education(MOHE). There are varying views on the most appropriate way to select students into

    a higher education institution; there is no one best method o student selection.

    Whatever method is selected, the HEP must be able to deend it consistently. Appropriate

    developmental or remedial support must be made available to assist students. The number

    o students to be admitted is determined by the resources and capacity o the HEP as well

    as the number o qualied applicants. The admission and retention policies o the HEP

    must not be compromised or the sole purpose o maintaining a desired enrolment. I an

    HEP operates geographically separated campuses, or i a programme is a collaborative

    one, the selection and assignment o all students must be equally consistent with

    national policies.


    4.1 Admission and Selection

    4.1.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEPmust have clear criteria and processes o student admission

    -- including those aecting transer and exchange students -- and

    select students whose capabilities are consistent with these criteria

    and processes.

    Thecriteriaandprocessesofselectionmust be published, disseminated

    and publicly accessible, especially to students.


    programme must be appropriate and clearly stated.

    If a selection interview is utilised, the process must be structured,

    objective and air.

    Studentselectionmust be air and transparent.

    There must be a clear policy on, and appropriate mechanism

    or, appeal.

    TheHEPmust oer appropriate developmental or remedial support to

    assist students who need such support.

    Thenumberforeachstudentintakemust be related to the resources,

    capacity and capability o the HEP to eectively deliver its programmes.

    Visiting, exchange and transfer students must be accounted or to

    ensure the adequacy o the HEPs resources to accommodate them.

    Theadmissionpolicymust be monitored and reviewed periodically to

    continuously improve the selection processes.

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    4.1.2 Enhanced Standards

    Studentperformanceshould be monitored as a eedback mechanism to

    assist in improving selection processes.

    Thereviewoftheadmissionpolicyandprocessesshouldbe in consultation

    with relevant stakeholders, nationally and internationally.

    Student intake should incorporate social responsibility by privileged

    consideration or people with special needs.

    Thereshould be a relationship between student selection, programmes,

    and the desired learning outcomes.

    4.2 Articulation Regulations, Credit Transer and Credit Exemption

    4.2.1 Benchmarked Standards

    HEP must have well dened and eectively disseminated policies,

    regulations and processes concerning articulation practices, credit

    transers and credit exemptions.

    4.2.2 Enhanced Standards

    TheHEPshould be in touch with the latest development and thinking

    about the processes o articulation, credit transers and credit exemptions

    including cross-border collaborative provisions.

    4.3 Transer o Students

    In this age o increased cross-border education and student mobility, nationally and

    globally, the question o the transer o students and credits and the articulation

    o accumulated learning has become a very important aspect o higher education.

    Thus, sucient attention must be given to ensure that transer students are

    smoothly assimilated into the institution without undue disruption to his studies.

    4.3.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEP must have a well-disseminated policy with clear criteria,

    mechanisms and processes, both academic and non-academic, to enable

    qualied students to transer to another programme, within it or in

    another HEP.

    Incomingtransferstudentsmust have comparable achievement in their

    previous institution o study.

    4.3.2 Enhanced Standards

    TheHEPshould have in place policies and mechanisms that acilitatestudent mobility between programmes and institutions, within the

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    country or cross-border, through articulation arrangements, joint

    degrees, exchange semesters, advanced standing arrangements, and

    the like.

    4.4 Student Support Services and Co-Curricular Activities

    Student support services and co-curricular activities acilitate learning and

    wholesome personal development and contribute to the achievement o learning

    outcomes. It includes physical amenities and services such as recreation, arts

    and culture, accommodation, transport, saety, ood, health, nance, academic

    advice and counselling. Students with special needs and those acing personal,

    relationship or identity problems can be helped through special-purpose acilities

    and proessional counselling. By examining a students career inclination, career

    counselling can help students make more inormed programme and career choices.

    4.4.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEP must make available appropriate and adequate support

    services, such as physical, social, nancial and recreational acilities, and

    counselling and health services.

    Studentsupport servicesmust be evaluated regularly to ensure their

    adequacy, eectiveness and saety.

    Theremust be a mechanism or students to air grievances and makeappeals relating to student support services.

    TheHEPmust designate an administrative unit responsible or planning

    and implementing student support services, staed by individuals who

    have appropriate experience consistent with their assignments.

    Academic and career counselling must be provided to students by

    adequate and qualied sta.

    Inductionprogrammesmustbe made available to students and evaluated

    regularly with special attention given to out o state and international

    students as well as students with special needs.

    4.4.2 Enhanced Standards

    Student support services should be given prominent organisational

    status in the HEP and a dominant role in supplementing programme

    learning outcomes.

    An equippedandadequatelystaffedunitdedicated to academic and

    non-academic counselling should be established.

    Studentacademicandnon-academiccounsellingshould include ongoing

    monitoring o the students progress to measure the eectiveness o,

    and to improve, the counselling services.

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    There should be a structured training and development plan

    to enhance the skills and proessionalism o the academic and

    non-academic counsellors.

    4.5 Student Representation and Participation

    The participation o students in various institutional activities inculcates sel-

    condence or leadership, and provides experience in education and related

    matters. By involving students, it will also be easier or the HEP to obtain their

    eedback. Student publications can also contribute to an atmosphere o responsible

    intellectual discourse.

    4.5.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheHEPmusthave a widely disseminated policy on student representation

    and participation in line with national policies and laws.

    TheHEPmust publish a statement o student rights and responsibilities

    and make it available to the campus community.


    ocials, and all disciplinary procedures must be clearly dened and

    broadly disseminated.

    Theremust be a policy and programmes or active student participation

    in areas that aect their welare, or example, peer counselling, co-

    curricular activities, and community engagement.

    4.5.2 Enhanced Standards

    Students and student organisations should be acilitated to gain

    managerial and leadership experience, to encourage character building,

    to inculcate a sense o belonging and responsibility, and to promote

    active citizenship.

    Wherestudentpublicationsorothermediaexist,theHEPshould provide

    a clear, ormal and well-publicised policy regarding such publications. Thereshould be appropriate channels to allow student participation in

    the ormulation, management and evaluation o the curriculum, and in

    academic matters relevant to them.

    TheHEPshould have adequate acilities to encourage students to be

    involved in publication activities.

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    4.6 Alumni

    4.6.1 Benchmarked Standards TheHEPmust encourage active linkages and continuous relationship

    between it and its alumni.

    4.6.2 Enhanced Standards

    The views of the alumni should be incorporated in curriculum

    development, the achievement o the learning outcomes and the uture

    direction o the HEP.

    The HEP should encourage the alumni to play a role in preparing

    students or their proessional uture, and to provide linkages withindustry and the proessions.

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    The quality o the academic sta is one o the most important components in assuringthe quality o higher education and thus every eort must be made to establish proper

    and eective recruitment, service, development and appraisal policies that are conducive

    to sta productivity. It is important that every programme has appropriately qualied

    and sucient number o academic sta in a conducive environment that encourages

    recruitment and retention.

    Teaching, research, consultancy services and community engagement are the core

    interrelated academic activities. Nevertheless, the degree o involvement in these areas

    varies between academic sta and between academic institutions.

    Work and its equitable distribution is one o the ways the HEP recognises meritorious

    contribution or the purpose o promotion, salary determination and other incentives. It

    is crucial or the HEP to provide training or its academic sta. The equitable distribution

    o work helps ensure that such training can be done airly and systematically.


    5.1 Recruitment and Management

    5.1.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheHEPmust have a clear and documented academic sta recruitment

    policy where the criteria or selection are based on academic merit.

    The staff tostudentratiofor each programmemust be appropriate

    to the teaching-learning methods and comply with the programme

    discipline standards.

    TheHEPmust have an adequate number o ull-time academic sta or

    each programme.

    TheHEPmust clariy the roles o the academic sta in teaching, research

    and scholarly activities, consultancy, community services and administrative

    unctions to show a balance o unctions and responsibilities in line with

    academic conventions.

    TheHEPpolicymust refect an equitable distribution o responsibilities

    among the academic sta.

    Recognition and reward through promotion, salary increment or

    other remuneration must be based on equitable work distribution

    and meritorious academic roles using clear and transparent policies

    and procedures.

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    The HEPmust have clear policies, criteria and processes in academic

    appointment and promotion exercise -- or example, that o Proessors

    and Associate Proessors -- guided by considerations which are in linewith national policy and international best practices.

    5.1.2 Enhanced Standards

    The recruitment policy should seek a balance between senior and

    junior academic sta, between academic and non-academic sta,

    between academic sta with dierent approaches to the subject,

    and between local and international academic sta with multi-

    disciplinary backgrounds.

    TheHEPshould have national and international linkages to provide or

    the involvement o renowned academics and proessionals to enhance

    its scholarly activities.

    5.2 Service and Development

    5.2.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEP must provide or an eective academic sta

    development programme.

    Thepolicyontheacademicstaffmust address matters related to service,

    development and appraisal.

    The HEP must provide mentoring and ormative guidance or new

    academic sta as part o its sta development programme.

    The academic staff must be provided with the necessary training,

    tools and technology or sel-learning, access to inormation and

    or communication.

    The HEP must provide or a suitable environment or the student

    appraisal o the academic sta.

    5.2.2 Enhanced Standards TheHEPshouldprovide opportunities -- including unding -- or academic

    sta participation in proessional, academic and other relevant activities,

    national and international. It should appraise this participation and

    demonstrate that it utilises the results o this appraisal or improvement

    o the student experience.

    The HEP should have appropriate provision to allow or advanced

    enhancement or its academic sta through research leave, sabbatical,

    and sponsored participation in, and organisation o, conerences.

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    Adequate educational resources are necessary to support teaching-learning activitieso a programme. These resources include nance, expertise, physical inrastructure,

    inormation and communication technology, and research acilities.

    The physical acilities o a programme are largely guided by the needs o the specic eld

    o study. These acilities include the space and the necessary equipments and acilities

    or administration, or large and small group learning (e.g., libraries, resource centres,

    lecture halls, auditoriums, tutorial rooms), or practical classes (e.g., science and computer

    laboratories, workshops, studios), and or clinical learning (e.g., hospitals, clinics).

    Where appropriate, research acilities are included as part o educational resourcesbecause a research-active environment improves the quality o higher education.

    A research culture attracts high calibre academics that engender critical thinking

    and enquiring mind, contributing urther to knowledge advancement. Active

    researchers are best suited to interpret and apply current knowledge or the benet

    o academic programmes and the community. They also attract grants that increase

    the number o sta and their morale. Interdisciplinary research has positive eects on

    academic programmes.

    A research-active environment provides opportunities or students to observe and

    participate in research through electives or core courses. Exposure to an environment

    o curiosity and inquiry encourages students to develop lasting skills in problem solving,

    data analysis and continuous updating o knowledge. Some students may develop an

    interest in research as a career choice.

    Educational experts are specialised sta rom various disciplines who have been trained

    or who have considerable experience in eective teaching-learning methodologies

    and related matters o higher education. They would deal with problems and provide

    training as well as advice on teaching-learning processes and practices. The expertise

    can be provided by an education unit or division at the HEP or acquired rom an

    external source.

    Other acilities, which are essential or supporting teaching-learning activities such as

    dormitories, transport, security, recreation and counselling, are equally important. A

    balanced and proportional increase in the direct and indirect educational resources

    supports eective teaching-learning.

    Adequate quantity o physical and nancial resources and services is crucial. Equally

    important, i not more so, is the quality, relevance, accessibility, availability and delivery

    o such resources and services, and their actual utilisation by learners and teachers alike.

    These considerations must be taken into account in evaluating the eectiveness o

    educational resources.

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    6.1 Physical Facilities

    6.1.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEP must have sucient and appropriate resources, including

    equipments and acilities or training, to ensure eective delivery o

    the curriculum.


    o academic sta development programmes, must be distributed

    according to the educational needs.

    The physical facilitiesmust comply with the relevant laws, and withhealth and saety regulations.

    The library and resource centre must have adequate and current

    reerences, qualied sta and other acilities -- including appropriate

    inormation and communication technology-mediated reerence

    materials -- to support academic programmes and research activities.

    The HEP must provide adequate and suitable acilities to promote

    research activities.

    TheHEPmust have a policy regarding access to inormation and external

    linkages or eective teaching and learning, or example, through the

    use o the most current electronic devices, library databases, networks

    and linkages and other eective means o using inormation and

    communication technology.

    6.1.2 Enhanced Standards

    Thephysicallearningenvironmentshould be periodically reviewed to

    assess its quality and appropriateness or current education and training,

    and regularly improved through renovations, building new acilities and

    the acquisition o the latest and appropriate equipment to keep up with

    the development in educational practices and changes.

    Studentsandfacultyshould be provided with adequate and continual

    support to learn how to utilise new equipments and to access inormation

    in the various and ever changing mediums and ormats.

    Thefacilitiesshould be user riendly to those with special needs.

    6.2 Research and Development(These standards are largely directed to universities and university colleges)

    6.2.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheHEPmust have a policy and planning that identies the priorities,

    acilities and development in research and commercialisation.

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    TheHEPmust acilitate and provide incentives or the academic sta

    and the departments to conduct research.

    Theinteractionbetweenresearchandeducationmust be refected inthe curriculum, inorm current teaching, and encourage and prepare

    students or engagement in research, scholarship and development.

    6.2.2 Enhanced Standards

    There should be a link between research, development and


    TheHEPshould periodically review research resources and acilities and

    take appropriate action to enhance its research capabilities and to keep

    up with latest technology. TheHEPshould provide incentives, including unding, to academic sta

    to engage in publication, including in reputable reereed journals.

    6.3 Educational Expertise

    6.3.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEP must have a policy on the use o educational expertise in

    planning educational programmes and in the development o new

    teaching and assessment methods.

    6.3.2 Enhanced Standards

    The HEP should have access to educational experts whose expertise

    can be utilised or sta development and educational research in the

    various disciplines.

    6.4 Educational Exchanges

    6.4.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheHEPmust have a policy on exchanges o students, academic sta

    and educational resources, and disseminate it to students and aculty.

    6.4.2 Enhanced Standards

    TheHEPshould have a clear policy and uture planning on educational

    collaboration with relevant international institutions.

    TheHEPshould provide appropriate acilities and adequate nancial

    allocation or exchanges o academic sta, students, and resources.

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    6.5 Financial Allocation

    6.5.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheHEPmust have budgetary and procurement procedures to ensure

    that its resources are sucient and that it is capable o utilising its

    nances eciently and responsibly to achieve its objectives and maintain

    high standards o quality.

    The HEP must have a clear line o responsibility and authority or

    budgeting and resource allocation that takes into account the specic

    needs o each department.

    TheHEPmust have a written and well-disseminated policy on tuition

    ees, reunds and other related payments.

    6.5.2 Enhanced Standards

    Those responsible for an academic programme should be given

    sucient autonomy to appropriately allocate resources to achieve

    the programme objectives and to maintain high educational standards.

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    Quality enhancement calls or programmes to be regularly monitored, reviewed andevaluated. This includes the monitoring, reviewing and evaluating o institutional

    structures and processes (administrative structure, leadership and governance, planning

    and review mechanisms), curriculum components (syllabi, teaching methodologies,

    learning outcomes) as well as student progress, employability and perormance.



    be obtained rom an analysis o student perormance and rom longitudinal studies.

    Measures o student perormance would include the average study duration, assessmentscores, passing rate at examinations, success and dropout rates, students and alumnis

    report about their learning experience, as well as time spent by students in areas o

    special interest. Evaluation o student perormance in examinations can reveal very

    useul inormation. I student selection has been correctly done, a high ailure rate in

    a programme indicates something amiss in the curriculum content, teaching-learning

    activities or assessment system. The programme committees need to monitor the

    perormance rate in each course and investigate i the rate is too high or too low.

    Student eedback, or example through questionnaires and representation in programme

    committees, is useul to identiy specic problems and or continual improvement o

    the programmes.

    One method to evaluate programme eectiveness is a longitudinal study o the graduates.

    The HEP should have mechanisms or monitoring the perormance o its graduates and

    or obtaining the perceptions o society and employers on the strengths and weaknesses

    o the graduates and to respond appropriately.


    7.1 Mechanisms or Programme Monitoring and Review

    7.1.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheHEPmust have a policy on the reviewing, monitoring and evaluation

    o all programmes oered that utilises proper mechanisms and resources,

    including benchmark data, teaching-learning methods and technologies,

    administration and related educational services, as well as eedback rom

    principal stakeholders.

    Theremust be a programme review committee or each departmentheaded by a designated coordinator.

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    In collaborativearrangements, thepartners involved must share the

    responsibility o programme monitoring and review.

    Theareasofconcernandwaystoimproveprogrammesasidentiedbythe HEP sel-review processes must be brought to the attention o the

    highest management level to ensure urther appropriate measures.

    Studentperformanceandprogressionmust be analysed to ascertain the

    achievement o the learning outcomes o each programme.

    7.1.2 Enhanced Standards

    Student performance andprogression analysis should be utilised to

    provide eedback to committees responsible or student selection,

    curriculum planning and student counselling.

    7.2 Involvement o Stakeholders

    7.2.1 Benchmarked Standards

    Theevaluationand reviewofprogrammesmust involve the relevant


    7.2.2 Enhanced Standards


    -- should be incorporated into a programme review exercise.

    For a professional programme, the HEP should engage the relevant

    proessional bodies and associations in its programme evaluation


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    There are many ways o administering a higher education institution. Nevertheless,governance that refects the leadership o an academic organisation must emphasise

    excellence and scholarship. It is very crucial that leadership at the various levels o the

    HEP provides clear guidelines and direction, builds relationship amongst the dierent

    constituents based on collegiality and transparency, manages nances and other resources

    with transparency and accountability, orge partnerships with signicant stakeholders

    in educational delivery, research and consultancy and dedicates itsel to academic and

    scholarly endeavours. Whilst ormalised arrangements can protect these relationships,

    they are best developed by a culture o reciprocity and open communication.


    8.1 Governance

    8.1.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The policies and practices of the HEP must be consistent with its

    statement o purpose.

    The HEP must clariy its governance structures and unctions, and

    the relationships within them, and these must be communicated toparties involved based on principles o transparency, accountability

    and authority.

    ThegoverningboardoftheHEPmust be an active policy-making body

    with an adequate degree o autonomy.

    Mechanisms to ensure functional integration and comparability

    o educational quality must be established in HEPs which have

    geographically separated campuses.

    TheHEPmust have a department or unit dedicated to, and responsible

    or, the internal quality assurance system.

    The HEP must encourage connectivity o its sta and students with

    the local community around it, including through cultural, social and

    community service activities.

    8.1.2 Enhanced Standards

    The HEP should have a comprehensive, interconnected and

    institutionalised committee system responsible or academic

    programmes that takes into consideration, among others, internal

    and external consultation, eedback, market needs analysis and

    employability projections.

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    Thegovernanceprinciplesshould refect the representation o academic

    sta, students and other stakeholders.

    TheChairofthegoverningboardshould exercise non-executive powerso the HEP.

    Thegoverningboardshould be ree rom undue external pressures.

    The HEP should have a clearly stated policy on confict o interest,

    particularly in relation to private practice and part-time employment o

    its employees.

    TheHEPshould actively participate in socio-economic activities o the

    community in which it is located.

    8.2 Institutional and Academic Leadership

    8.2.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The selection criteria, selection process, job description, and the

    qualication and experience required o members o the institutional

    executive management team o the HEP (i.e., the HEP leadership) must

    be clearly stated.

    The leadership of academic programmes and departments (i.e.,

    the academic leadership) must be held by those with appropriate

    qualications and experience, and suciently knowledgeable on issueso curriculum design, delivery and review.

    Mechanismsandprocessesmust be in place to allow or communication

    between the HEP leadership and the academic leadership o

    departments and programmes in matters such as aculty recruitment

    and training, student admission, allocation o resources, and decision-

    making processes.


    be evaluated at dened intervals with respect to perormance and in

    relation to the achievement o the mission and goals o the HEP.

    8.2.2 Enhanced Standards

    The HEP leadership and the academic leadership should take on

    the responsibility o creating a conducive environment to generate

    innovation and creativity.

    The HEP leadership and the academic leadership should undergo

    periodic training and sta development programme to enhance their

    leadership capabilities.

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    8.3 Administrative and Management Sta

    8.3.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheadministrativestaffoftheHEPmust be appropriate and sucient

    to support the implementation o the educational programmes and

    related activities, and to ensure good management and deployment o

    the resources.

    TheHEPmust have mechanisms or training and career advancement

    or its administrative and management sta.

    TheHEPmust conduct regular perormance review o its administrative

    and management sta.

    8.3.2 Enhanced Standards

    TheHEPshould have an advanced training scheme or the administrative

    and management sta to ull the specic needs o educational

    programmes, or example, risk management, maintenance o specialised

    equipment, and additional technical skills.

    8.4 Academic Records

    8.4.1 Benchmarked Standards

    TheHEPmust have policies concerning the accessibility and security o

    student and academic sta records.

    TheHEPmust establish and disseminate policies that respect the rights

    o individual privacy and the condentiality o records.

    8.4.2 Enhanced Standards

    The HEP should continuously review policies on security o

    records including increased use o electronic technologies and its

    saety systems.

    8.5 Interaction with External Sectors

    8.5.1 Benchmarked Standards

    The HEP must have a constructive mechanism or cooperation with

    external sectors, including with its external stakeholders.

    8.5.2 Enhanced Standards

    The collaboration with external sectors should be institutionalised

    through ormalised agreements.

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    Section 3Submission for Institutional Audit

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    Section 3 Submission or Institutional Audit


    This section contains inormation and reerence to assist the Higher Education Provider(HEP) in the preparation o submission or an institutional audit. It is not a prescriptive

    tool; it is a general manual meant to assist the provider to understand and interpret the

    necessary inormation required or such a submission. The HEP should ollow closely the

    requirements ound in Section 3.1 below and clariy with the MQA rom time to time

    should the need arise.

    Although comprehensive, not all items in this section apply equally to all submissions;

    some are more relevant and applicable than others. The HEP should utilise the guidelines

    appropriately and customise their submission in accordance to the specic needs o their

    institution. They should, however, indicate -- and explain -- items that are not applicableto them.

    The guidelines in this section cover all the main dimensions in the nine areas o evaluation.

    It also provides illustrative examples. The HEP is expected to provide appropriate

    inormation with evidences that support and best illustrate their specic case. The HEP is

    also welcomed to urnish additional inormation that may not be specically covered by

    these guidelines.

    The inormation provided by the HEP or its submission should be brie, concise

    and succinct.

    3.1 The Documentation Required

    HEPsare required to submit the Self-ReviewPortfolio (SRP)orMQA-03, for an

    institutional audit in the prescribed ormat below:

    - PartA:GeneralInformationAbouttheHEP

    This is an institutional prole o the HEP.

    - Part B: Inormation on the Nine Areas o Evaluation or Quality


    This provides the inormation pertaining to the nine areas o evaluation

    and the standards in each o them.

    - PartC:Self-ReviewReport

    In preparing the portolio, HEPs are encouraged to use bullet points, diagrams

    and fow charts as much as possible. In support o the inormation provided in the

    portolio, HEPs may append relevant and signicant documentations. The HEP maybe requested to provide additional inormation beore or during the institutional

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    condential inormation or verication purposes.

    The HEP is expected to send to the MQA:







    o auditors.

    The remaining pages o this section consist o descriptions o templates or Part A

    and Part B, aswellastheguidelinestoaSelf-ReviewReport(PartC).

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