THE-ICE ACCREDITATION PROCESS
THE-ICE has adopted a two-stage accreditation process, which is outlined in the following schema.
In brief, the two stages consist of the following steps.
1. THE-ICE PRE-ACCREDITATION ASSESSMENT
Institutions wishing to join THE-ICE must initially undertake Pre-accreditation application procedure, which involves the following processes:
- Self-Review: completion of a self-reflective application form with quantitative and qualitative evidence of the applicant meeting the Pre-accreditation criteria of THE-ICE Standards of Excellence
- Evaluation: an Auditor to evaluate the information provided by the Applicant Institution. An interim report prepared by the auditor will be provided to the applicant institution to comment and/or prepare supplementary information
- Site Audit: site audit of the institution conducted by an Auditor to validate claims made in the application. The visit includes and not limiting to the inspection of institution facilities, meeting with senior executives, teaching & administrative support staff, students, alumni, representatives from industry advisory board etc Auditor will submit a final report (application & site audit) with summary and recommendations at the conclusion of the site audit, copies will be forwarded to the Applicant for comments and/or record
- Peer review: THE-ICE Board reviews the institution’s application based on the information provided in the Executive Summary, Pre-accreditation application & site audit reports and recommendation of the Auditor
- On-going benchmarking and monitoring: mandatory participation in THE-ICE annual Student Barometer survey, conducted in partnership with i-Graduate (UK) to provide member institutions confidential benchmarking reports on student study experiences and level of satisfaction. THE-ICE also monitors any course changes to ensure they are in alignment with the accreditation granted, and to provide input into internal course reviews, if required industry advisory board etc
II.THE-ICE FULL ACCREDITATION PROCESS AND ASSESSMENT PANEL
There are two types of full accreditation
i)Accreditation for Current Associates of THE-ICE
After successful completion of the pre-accreditation process, institutions will be granted Associate of THE-ICE status, valid for a period of 3 years. An Associate, at any time during the Pre-accreditation validity period (3 years), is entitled to apply for full accreditation. Similar to the Pre-accreditation this process involves rigorous assessment and includes the following:
- Self-review: the Associate prepares a self-review document addressing the criteria as set in Accreditation Application Proforma. The criteria are in line with THE-ICE Standards of Excellence focusing on self-reflection. The mission, goals and aims of the institution and its programmes are examined, and then aligned with the actual programmes and their graduate attributes, facilities, teaching staff, internationalisation policies and industry engagement activities etc.
- Evaluation: the Accreditation Application Proforma will be evaluated by at two or more Auditors of THE-ICE Assessment Panel. An interim auditor report will be sent to the Associate for comment and/or prepare supplementary information
- Site visit: to be conducted by two or more Auditors of THE-ICE Assessment Panel to validate claims stated in the Application Proforma. The visit includes and not limiting to the inspection of institution facilities, meeting with the teaching staff, administrative support staff, students, alumni and the industry advisory board etc
- The Auditors will have copies of the Applicant Institution’s Pre-accreditation reports as reference. This will facilitate the Auditors to assess the status since, and to assess if they meet THE-ICE Standards of Excellence for full accreditation. In cases where the site audit fall short of THE-ICE Standards of Excellence’s criteria, supplementary site audit will be conducted to ensure all mandatory requirements are met.
- Peer Review: THE-ICE Board of Directors reviews the institution’s application based on information provided in the Executive Summary, accreditation application & site audit reports from the auditors as well as the recommendation of Chair, THE-ICE Assessment Panel
On-going benchmarking and monitoring: mandatory participation in THE-ICE International Student and Student Barometer survey, conducted in partnership with i-Graduate, UK to provide on-going researched data and confidential benchmarking report to member institutions about their student’s study experience. THE-ICE also monitors any programme changes to ensure that they are in line with the accreditation granted, and can offer mentoring or consultancy services in their internal programme reviews.
ii)Accreditation for Affiliate
An Accreditation process for offshore partner of Foundation or AccreditationPLUS Member. The offshore institution must be offering one (or more) of the Members’ programmes that are deemed to have already met THE-ICE Standards of Excellence.
To initiate the accreditation process, Foundation or AccreditationPlus Member has to complete and submit a Nomination Form in the prescribed format for its offshore partner, provide preliminary information on the nominated institution and the programme or programmes it delivers under the partnership arrangement. The nominated partner institution needs to complete the following accreditation process:
- Self-review: as nominated partner of an AccreditationPLUS Member it is deemed that the TH&E programme or programmes they deliver already meet THE-ICE Standards of Excellence. However the nominee is required to prepare a self-review document addressing 7 key criteria (out of the 14 criteria) as set in the Affiliate Application Proforma, demonstrating its ability in achieving comparable objectives, learning experiences and graduate outcomes to its partner’s equivalent.
- Evaluation: the Affiliate Application Proforma will be assessed by an Auditor of THEICE Assessment Panel to ensure that the quality and integrity of the offshore programme or programmes is/are equivalent to the one or those delivered by the AccreditationPLUS Member
- Site visit: to be conducted an Auditor of THE-ICE Assessment Panel to ensure all mandatory requirements are met.
- Peer Review: the auditor to complete the assessment and site audit report for the Chair of the Assessment Panel to make a recommendation to the Board of THE-ICE for approval.
- On-going benchmarking and monitoring: mandatory participation in the annual THE-ICE International Student Barometer, conducted in partnership with i-Graduate, UK for ongoing benchmarking and findings on their student study experience and levels of satisfaction. Upon successful completion of the Affiliate application process, the partner institution will enjoy the range of services based on a formal agreement signed with THE-ICE. Validity of the Affiliate’s accreditation status is limited to the same period remains as that of the AccreditationPLUS Member, who has submitted the nomination.
THE-ICE MEMBERSHIP CATEGORIES
As can be seen in the Accreditation and Membership schema above, institutions interested in obtaining programme accreditation from THE-ICE initially apply to undertake a Pre-Accreditation Assessment. Below is a brief overview of each category and its status:
I.Associate of THE-ICE Status
All institutions seeking accreditation of their programmes by THE-ICE must initially undertake a Pre-Accreditation Assessment. In brief, this process will involve a pro-forma self-assessment process and verification visit by THE-ICE. Upon acceptance, an institution may become an Associate for up to 3-years. At any point during this period of time the institution can apply for full accreditation. THE-ICE offers a mentoring service to help institutions with any identified areas for improvement to help them meet the Standards of Excellence.
Founding members are institutions which joined THE-ICE during Australian government seed-funding period (from 2004 to 2008) and remain strong supporters of the network.
This category is for any Associates of THE-ICE wishing to seek full accreditation of their TH&E programmes. The range of services offered to Full Members is based on a service agreement. Depending on individual needs Full Members have the choice to select one of the following Full Membership options:
- Accredited Member Status For institutions whose primary interest is in accreditation and quality assurance for their programmes. While these institutions will be full members of THE-ICE, they elect not participate in the full range of options (such as additional marketing, projects that THE-ICE offers etc.).
- AccreditationPLUS Status THE-ICE offers accreditation to these members PLUS additional activities that they may choose to participate in. These services will be aimed at those institutions who recognise the added benefits of participating in more active marketing through THE-ICE, and who welcome the opportunity to be involved in international projects etc. They can also nominate their overseas partners (who offer one or more of their programmes) to become listed as Affiliate Members of THE-ICE.
This category is relevant to the offshore partner institutions of AccreditationPLUS members. A number of institutions offer their programmes through offshore partner institutions. Typically these institutions offer one (or more) of the programmes that have already met THE-ICE Standards of Excellence (SoE) at the member institution. THE-ICE is prepared to extend the existing accreditation to the programme/s offered at these partner institutions providing they meet the SoE guidelines. Given that these partners vary in terms of scope, and scale, THE-ICE Affiliate status will only be granted to specific programmes following nomination by the relevant member, and after an inspection by THE-ICE.
V.Others: Observer of THE-ICE
In response to growing interest in accreditation, benchmarking and the development of excellence in TH&E education and recognition of organisations and/or institutions which wish to have a closer understanding of THE-ICE and its activities, however for various reasons are not ready to seek Pre-accreditation or accreditation at this point in time.
This Observer status enables THE-ICE to continue dialogue with institutions of interest on one hand and the Observers the opportunity to participate in selected activities.
In October 2010 and with the approval of THE-ICE Board of Directors this new membership category was introduced and is opened only to appropriately registered, recognised and reputable international institutions offering tourism, hospitality, events and culinary arts programmes.
For further information regarding THE-ICE application process, please contact Ms Pauline Tang, General Manager: firstname.lastname@example.org