Accredited courses meet MQA criteria and are recognised

PETALING JAYA: Knowing the essential differences between accredited and non-accredited courses is important for students to make informed decisions.

According to the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA), accreditation is a formal recognition that a certificate, diploma or degree programme has attained the quality standards and criteria set by the MQA and in compliance with the Malaysian Qualifications Framework (MQF).

The completion of an accredited course means that students are issued with a nationally recognised qualification.

Accreditation is a status or achievement as a result of quality assessment by MQA.

It is a commitment by MQA to all stakeholders in higher education such as students and parents that the programme accredited by MQA is quality-assured.

It also provides employers with the guarantee that the course also meets national standards and requirements.

Besides being a benchmark for quality programmes, accreditation status by MQA has many advantages, including that students are eligible to apply for loans from funding agencies such as the National Higher Education Fund (PTPTN).

An MQA-recognised qualification is also needed to work in the civil service.

For example, the Public Service Department will use this accreditation status to recognise the qualification for employment in the public service.

Having MQA accreditation also facilitates the credit transfer process if students decide to continue their studies in higher education institutions.

With MQA accreditation, institutions can franchise their accredited programmes to other institutions, subject to certain conditions.

Institutions whose programmes have been accredited can also use MQA recognition in their advertisements or any other statement.

In contrast, a non-accredited programme does not count towards a recognised qualification.

However, this does not mean that an unrecognised qualification is fake.

Graduates from unaccredited programmes may be self-employed and can even be hired in the private sector as employers have the discretion.

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