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Best practices for quality assurance of higher education require clearly defined, transparent, fair criteria and standards that serve as references for evaluations and reports of programmes offered by higher education providers.

MQA has developed a code of practice on criteria and standards for higher education in Malaysia. This code of practice is benchmarked against international good practices and is nationally accepted by stakeholders through various consultations among academic and industries players.

The code of practice on criteria and standards provides a guideline of general requirements in the following areas:

  1. Area 1: Program Development and Delivery
  2. Area 2: Assessment of Student Learning
  3. Area 3: Student Selection and Support Services
  4. Ares 4: Academic Staff
  5. Area 5: Educational Resources
  6. Area 6: Programme Management
  7. Area 7: Programme Monitoring, Review and Continual Quality Improvement

In general, MQA quality assures programmes through two distinct processes:

  1. Provisional Accreditation - is an exercise to determine whether a programme has met the minimum quality requirements preliminary to Full Accreditation.
  2. Full Accreditation - an assessment exercise to ascertain that the teaching, learning and all other related activities of a programme provided by a higher education provider have met the quality standards and are in compliance with the MQF.

The MQA Act 2007 also provides for the conferment of a self-accrediting status to mature higher education institutions that have well established internal quality assurance mechanisms. To be so conferred, the higher education institution needs to undergo an institutional audit, and if successful, all qualifications it offers will be automatically registered in the MQR.

The processes above are further supported by continuous quality monitoring to ensure the programmes offered by the institutions are always quality assured.

MQA Quality Assurance Process

The Learning Outcomes

Student achievements are measured by learning outcomes. These learning outcomes distinguish the varying competencies as to what a student will do at the end of a study period for each MQF level. Learning outcomes are based on five clusters of learning:

  1. Knowledge and understanding
  2. Cognitive skills
  3. Functional work skills with focus on:
       a. Practical skills
       b. Interpersonal skills
       c. Communication skills
       d. Digital skills
       e. Numeracy skills
       f. Leadership, autonomy and responsibility
  4. Personal and entrepreneurial skills
  5. Ethics and professionalism.

Learning outcomes are linked to the credit system, which values all student learning time and is not based on the contact hours between lecturers and students.

The Link Between Learning Outcomes,Credit Value, MQF and MQA