News: NIAD-QE renews MoU with GAC
Following the initial term of five years commencing in October 2015, the renewed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for Cooperation and Collaboration between NIAD-QE and the German Accreditation Council (GAC) signed by FUKUDA Hideki, Ph.D., President of NIAD-QE and Professor Dr. Reinhold R. Grimm, Chairman of GAC came into effect on December 14, 2020. The MoU remains effective until December 2025.
GAC is a joint institution of the German states established in 1999 for quality assurance of higher education in Germany. Accreditation procedures are carried out by ten quality assurance agencies across the German-speaking regions, rather than by GAC itself. GAC makes final decisions on the accreditation based on the accreditation report by the quality assurance agency and accredits higher education institutions.
In Germany, education is under the jurisdiction of each state, and quality assurance systems for higher education vary from state to state. According to the regulations established to maintain uniformity throughout Germany, there are different types of accreditation from which universities can choose, including “programme accreditation” which is the periodic accreditation conducted on study programmes, and “system accreditation,” the periodic institutional accreditation conducted on efficiency and reliability of the internal quality management systems in universities, along with “alternative procedures” that are independently developed by universities. Alternative procedures require approval of GAC and the state for implementation, and accredited universities and programmes are awarded the seal of GAC.
Thus, GAC is involved in important aspects of accreditation, such as making final decisions on accreditation results and approving accreditation procedures. Moreover, GAC is committed to supporting the states for further enhancement of quality assurance systems in German higher education institutions, while working towards international cooperation in quality assurance with other countries in Europe.
To date, NIAD-QE and GAC have strengthened cooperation through regular exchanges of information on each other's initiatives regarding quality assurance in higher education, as well as through NIAD-QE’s visits to discuss the quality assurance systems in Germany and Europe.
In light of this renewal of MoU, both institutions will continue to enhance professional expertise as quality assurance institutions by exchanging information on quality assurance in Japan and Germany and to promote support for higher education institutions.