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safeguarding standards and improving the quality of UK higher education

QAA states intention to be designated quality body

Date 21/09/2017

​QAA has published its expression of interest to be the designated quality body, assessing the quality and standards of higher education in England.

The Higher Education and Research Act 2017 created a new regulator for English higher education, the Office for Students. The legislation allows for an independent quality body to be designated to carry out certain assessment functions. A formal consultation on designation will open later this autumn.

The expression of interest outlines how QAA's track record provides the evidence of its capability to carry out these assessment functions and provide advice on the award of degree awarding powers. QAA meets all of the conditions for designation as set out in the Act.

'Unparalleled expertise'

QAA's Chief Executive Douglas Blackstock said: 'The expression of interest clearly demonstrates our unparalleled expertise in quality assurance, underpinning the UK sector's international reputation for quality.

'QAA is a forward-looking organisation, ready to deliver an innovative system that works for the whole of our diverse sector - universities, colleges and alternative providers.'

The expression of interest was developed in response to a call from the Department for Education (PDF, 167KB). The Office for Students will begin operation in January 2018 and the designated quality body will start work in April 2018.