A vibrant mechanism of governance is essential to maintain and to enhance the standards of the Higher Education System. Therefore, the Quality Assurance and Accreditation Council (QAAC) of the University Grants Commission was established in September 2005 and entrusted with the task of maintaining and enhancing the academic and administrative standards in State Universities of Sri Lanka.
The QAAC’s vision is to achieve excellence in higher education with the support of a robust Quality Assurance (QA) system, while its’ mission is to ensure quality by continuous development and efficient performance of Sri Lankan higher education institutions, and thereby to gain the confidence of the community of university stakeholders in accordance with internationally recognized evaluation mechanisms.
The QAAC also sets out precisely, the key quality assurance activities expected to be undertaken by Degree programs, Departments and Faculties of State higher educational institutes.
Considerable progress has been achieved towards establishing a QA system in Public Universities and Institutes, with support from the Committee for QA under the Committee of Vice Chancellors and Directors (CVCD), Standing Committee for QA under the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the Quality Assurance and Accreditation (QAA) Council of the UGC.
A full time Director was appointed to the QAAC from the 1st of January 2016. The office of the QAAC is in a new location now close to the main buildings of the University Grants Commission at 20, Ward Place, Colombo 7.
The highlights of QAAC’s Plan of Activities for 2016-2017 would be to ensure quality of higher education in State Universities and HEIs through external peer reviews, strengthening of Internal Quality Assurance Units (IQAUs) of Universities, implementation of the Sri Lanka Qualifications Framework and the formulation and adoption of Subject Benchmarks for the next decade. It also hopes to develop an accreditation process for universities and HEIs in Sri Lanka, and encourage and appreciate quality in higher education by creating opportunity for showcasing “Innovative Teaching, Learning and Assessment in Sri Lankan Universities”.
Supervision and monitoring to ensure the continued conformance of academic programs to international standards are essential for the sustainability of Programs and Institutes. The QAAC will endeavor to guide and assist the State Universities to continuously improve the quality and standards of their academic provision and contribute to the manpower development in the country through enhanced higher education programs and endeavors appropriate for the 21st century.
Prof Deepthi C. Bandara