Given the recent move to providing online learning, or some might say, a race that has been accelerated by Covid19, student engagement has again been raised as a key objective to assist learners achieve their desired learning outcomes. By Adam Thomas Accreditation and...
4th edition: From initial to multiple accreditation
When looking at accreditation processes as change management projects, it becomes very clear that it’s a complex process which requires firm commitment of the leadership and the school’s key stakeholders. Despite the fear that having a clear and valuable mission and strategy might create a somewhat rigid framing, they are in fact enabling the freedom of the school to say no, to focus. An inspiring and visionary strategy, with both short- and long-term goals, will enable the school to keep the motivation of staff and faculty high.
By Griet Houbrechts
Director, Professional Development
To make the change sustainable over time, it is critical when adapting rules, procedures or processes within the school that these changes are not made only to serve accreditation purposes. Accreditation is not just about accomplishing standards but about anchoring the narrative around the standards firmly on the school’s mission, strategy and context.
The same is true for any data management process. It should be set up to inform in the first-place strategic decision making. The different international accreditations have a different focus, but for all of them, smart data management is key, and schools need to tackle this early on in the process. Putting in place a more structured way to document the processes within the schools also provides a stronger sense of transparency, especially for the internal stakeholders. Making sure that the feedback is used to further continuous improvement is an important outcome.
When done thoroughly, accreditation gives a lot back to the school. It has the potential to strengthen the business school. When making sure that the accreditation process is strongly linked to the school’s mission and strategy, it reinforces that strategy before and during the process and helps set transformative objectives for the future. Continuous improvement means constant change and adaptation.
Not everybody likes change, but being clear about what the school is trying to achieve and working towards a shared sense of pride are important elements of motivating faculty and staff. It is also clear that in order to be ready for change, the school’s leadership needs to pay attention to the skills development of faculty and staff.
When going through any change management process, leadership commitment and continuity are crucial. Hence, the importance of having the senior management team and faculty on board of the accreditation journey.
Finally, several contributions stress the power of networks. There is great value in sharing experiences, insights, but also questions and doubts with peer schools. And this edition of the Knowledge Bar is again a good example of that!
At the beginning of an initial accreditation journey, schools usually aspire to earn accreditation as quickly as possible, while at the same time attempting to reflect and make an authentic self-assessment of their performance against the standards, incorporate peer...
As an accreditation officer at a triple-crown accredited school, you are frequently asked how long it takes to attain your first international accreditation and what would be the fastest way to get there. However, there is not really a fast track about accreditation....