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Organisational self-assessment and external evaluation and review are separate and complementary elements. They are requirements of course approval and accreditation (under sections 258 & 259 of the Education Act 1989) for all tertiary education organisations (TEOs) entitled to apply. The requirements are set through the course approval and accreditation criteria and policies established by NZQA under section 253(1)(d) & (e) of the Act.
Private training establishments (PTEs), must also carry out self-assessment at an organisational level to maintain registration. These criteria and policies are set by NZQA under section 253(1)(ca) of the Act.
NZQA is responsible for ensuring TEOs continue to comply with the policies and criteria after initial approval and accreditation of courses and/or registration is granted. The New Zealand Vice-Chancellors’ Committee (NZVCC) has statutory responsibility for university compliance.
Quality Assurance Framework
The above policies and criteria are gazetted under the Education Act 1989. They provide a quality assurance framework established by NZQA comprising four components:
- Initial entry processes of course approval, accreditation to deliver a course, registration of PTEs and accreditation to assess standards on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework
- External evaluation and review (EER)
- Managing the consequences of a TEO’s poor performance.
The quality assurance framework uses the theory and practice of evaluation to focus on the quality of educational outcomes and key contributing processes. Evaluation as a discipline provides a systematic basis for answering questions about quality and value.