The Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA/Agensi Kelayakan Malaysia) recently granted Curtin University of Technology, Sarawak Malaysia (Curtin Sarawak) self-accreditation status following an institutional audit that included a visit by an MQA panel of auditors to the university campus in October last year.
Eight selected higher education institutions were invited by the MQA to apply for self-accreditation status from January 2008. They comprised four research universities – Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Universiti Malaya, Universiti Putra Malaysia and Universiti Sains Malaysia, and the four foreign branch campuses in Malaysia – Curtin University of Technology, Sarawak Malaysia, Monash University Malaysia, University of Nottingham Malaysia, and Swinburne University of Technology, Sarawak Campus.
Curtin Sarawak’s pro vice-chancellor and chief executive Professor Ian Kerr commented that being granted self-accreditation status proves Curtin Sarawak’s maturity and credibility as a private higher education institution (PHEI) in Malaysia and brings many benefits and advantages to both the university and its students.
“This recognition is testimony to the excellence of our teaching and learning, research output, staff calibre, and the quality of our graduates and their employability. It is indeed a significant milestone in the history of Curtin Sarawak,” he said.
He added that it should inspire the confidence of parents, students and employers, both local and international, in the standards of the university’s qualifications and the quality of their delivery.
“Self-accreditation is really the accreditation of an institution’s internal quality mechanisms, with all the processes and procedures for quality assurance. We have shown that we have a strong internal quality management system and can now accredit our own courses,” said Professor Kerr.
Professor Kerr thanked the MQA’s panel of auditors for facilitating the audit process, commenting that the academic performance audit report prepared by the panel reflected highly on the work being done at Curtin Sarawak.
“The report is evidence of the progress that Curtin Sarawak has made over the last few years and suggests a very bright future for the campus. I was very delighted to see the number of commendations and affirmations in our core areas,” he said.
Based on the report, Professor Kerr is confident that Curtin Sarawak has reached benchmark standards in nine key areas, that is: its vision, mission, educational goals and learning outcomes; curriculum design and delivery; assessment of students; student selection and support services; academic staff; educational resources; programme, monitoring and review; leadership, governance and administration; and continual quality improvement.
“At Curtin Sarawak we are very committed to quality improvement and enhancement and the campus has been successful in the process of educating students within the framework of Curtin’s quality management system.
The findings in the MQA report and the granting of self-accreditation status provide sufficient evidence that the quality management system is an all encompassing one that has been extremely successful in producing graduates who are highly sought after. The recognition given by the MQA certainly gives our programmes added value, as well as the impetus to continually enhance our programmes, operations and services,” Professor Kerr concluded.