Page 6 - ASIC-Handbook
P. 6

3. accreditation                                    Summary of the Inspector’s activities:

                                                                • meet the Principal/senior management team

                                                                • meet the institution owner(s),
           3.1 The Accreditation Process
                                                                • undertake an initial tour of all of the premises,
          Accreditation is based upon the inspection of the full   • inspect the arrangements for health and safety and
          range of the institution’s provision and supporting    fire risk and related records,
          activities, together with a detailed consideration of the
                                                                • undertake a survey of the library where appropriate,
          institution’s documentation, which helps to ensure that
          the on-going operation of the institution is maintained at   • assess the IT provision for staff and students,
          an acceptable level.                                  • assess classroom facilities and laboratory and audio
                                                                 visual equipment, if appropriate,
          Institutions considering accreditation by ASIC should
          download the appropriate Application Form from the    • visit the student common room and refreshment areas,
          ASIC website. This should be completed and returned   • confirm that all documents on the checklist provided
          together with copies of the institution’s documentation   to the institution are in place and satisfactory,
          as detailed in the Application Form.
                                                                • visit institution-owned student accommodation
          There are then three stages in the accreditation       (if appropriate).
          process, namely:
                                                                When a Stage 2 visit has occurred, the visiting Inspector
           Stage 1 - Assessment of the Application and          will submit a report of the visit, which will recommend
                   Accompanying Documentation
                                                                whether or not to proceed to Stage 3 and identify any
                                                                shortcomings that the institution may need to address
          Stage 1 involves the review of the documentation      before the Stage 3 event takes place.
          submitted with the application. If the information
          provided is assessed as acceptable, the process moves   At this stage, the report will be forwarded to the ASIC
          to Stage 2. If it is not acceptable, the institution may   Accreditation Committee (see section 3.2.1) who
                                                                will make a decision regarding the award of Interim
          be advised either on actions to be taken to rectify the
                                                                Accreditation. Interim Accreditation will last for a
          perceived shortcomings, or that it is unlikely that ASIC
                                                                period of 12 months and allows the institution to begin
          would accredit it at this stage of its development. There is   recruiting students via the Short Term Study visa (STS),
          a fee payable at Stage 1 (see Section 7).             during which a Stage 3 visit will need to be arranged.
                                                                Further details about Interim Accreditation can be found
           Stage 2 - Initial Inspection Visit                   in section 3.2.2

          The Stage 2 inspection will normally, as a minimum, be a   Stage 3 - Final Inspection Visit
          one day visit by an ASIC Inspector, who will focus on the
                                                                While all eight Areas of Operation, identified in Section
          institution’s compliance with statutory and immigration
          requirements, premises and health and safety,         2.4 and detailed in the document on the website, will be
                                                                covered during the Stage 3 inspection, there will be an
          management, the adequacy of the teaching resources for   emphasis on academic matters, including learning and
          the advertised or planned courses, and staff and student   teaching, resources and quality management, together
          records. A check-list of the documents which need to be   with student welfare and reporting to official bodies.
          prepared for the visit will be forwarded to the institution.  The Inspectors will also ensure that the institution has
                                                                responded satisfactorily to issues raised during Stage 2.
          The Inspector will meet the owner(s) of the institution to   In general, Inspectors will seek to encourage institutions
          discuss the business plan for the on-going operation and   to look for ways in which they might continue to improve
          development of the institution. In the event of the owner   their provision and suggest ways in which this might be
          not being available, this meeting should occur with the   achieved.
          Principal and senior management of the institution, and   The inspection will normally last one day, though for
          the meeting with the owner deferred to the Stage 3 visit.   large institutions with more than 1000 FTE’s (Full-Time
          If the owner is still not available, then the reasons for this   Equivalent students) and a wide academic programme
          should be made clear and a person authorised to speak   this may be increased to two days. The number of
          on behalf of the owner(s) should be identified and be   Inspectors involved will depend on the size of the
          present.                                              institution and diversity of the academic programme.
                                                                During the visit the Inspectors will hold meetings with
          The visiting Inspector will also discuss the format of and   the senior management team, with other staff (without
          the arrangements for the Stage 3 inspection visit.    senior management staff being present) and with a group

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