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The University Council of Jamaica (UCJ) re-accredited six programmes and accredited seven new programmes in seven tertiary institutions during the Council’s financial year from April 2003 to March 2004.
The programmes are available in the seven tertiary institutions, including the Caribbean Graduate School of Theology; College of Agriculture, Science and Education; University of Technology; Florida International University, in collaboration with the Institute of Management Sciences; Manchester Business School, in conjunction with the Jamaica Institute of Bankers; NOVA South Eastern University; and the University of South Florida, in collaboration with Shortwood Teachers’ College.
According to the UCJ’s Annual Report, which was tabled in the House of Representatives on November 2, the 13 accredited programmes include seven Master’s degrees, four Bachelor’s degrees, and two Associate degrees.
The programmes cover a wide cross section of disciplines, including Agriculture, Business, Computing, Counselling, Psychology, Education, Natural Sciences, and Theology. Of the 13 accredited programmes, overseas institutions are offering three of the Master’s degrees and one of the Bachelor’s degrees. The report noted that as defined by the UCJ, “accreditation is the status granted to an institution for its programme offerings that have been found through self-study and peer review, to meet or exceed stated guidelines of educational quality”.
The role of the UCJ, the report stated, is to serve as the national accrediting body for tertiary education and to ensure quality through encouraging the improvement of educational standards.
“The accreditation process is intended to strengthen and sustain the quality and integrity of tertiary education, making it worthy of public confidence,” the report said.
All local and overseas institutions offering study programmes in Jamaica, and are desirous of being recognised by the UCJ, are required to submit their programmes for evaluation through the UCJ’s accreditation process.
During the financial year, the UCJ conducted 15 accreditation and registration visits, and 17 programmes were evaluated for the purpose of accreditation.