International Programme Accreditation (IPA) is designed to offer institutions outside of the UK the opportunity to have an independent peer review of their curriculum development and quality assurance process.
This includes the systematic monitoring and evaluation of learning and teaching, and the processes that support them to make sure that the standards of academic awards meet the required level and that the quality of the student learning experience is being safeguarded and continually improved. This is combined with specific review of individual programmes of study, which may lead to Programme Accreditation by QAA.
IPA assesses the standards and quality of individual programmes of study against the European Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area (ESG) .
To find our more about IPA, watch our introductory video.
To be eligible for IPA you will need to demonstrate to QAA, with evidence, that you meet the following criteria:
- The institution is registered, or otherwise appropriately recognised, as a higher education institution by the national quality assurance authority or other relevant agency or ministry of the country or countries in which it is located.
- The national quality assurance authority or other relevant agency or ministry is aware of the institution's intention to request an IPA from QAA.
- The IPA process will be conducted in English and the institution will take full responsibility for any translations from and into English which are deemed necessary for the process.
- The institution is financially viable and sustainable.
- The institution has the legal right to use the infrastructure, main facilities and resources of the premises.
- The programme has recruited a minimum of three cohorts of students, at least one of which has graduated at the time of application.
- The programme has been through a rigorous internal accreditation process, and external accreditation process as required by local quality assurance authority.
- There is an agreement to validate the degree awards by an appropriate awarding body.
- The programme has successfully completed internal quality assurance processes and, where relevant, external quality assurance processes.
- Programme Intended Learning Outcomes are in place, with details of how they are to be achieved.
- Programme design is informed by external references, external expertise and current professional practice.
- Appropriate programme facilities and learning resources are in place.
- The programme identifies potential employment destinations and/or opportunities for further study.
Benefits of IPA
IPA enables your higher education institution to analyse and improve the quality assurance systems that safeguard your programme, which supports development of your curriculum and helps student achievement.
A successful review results in International Programme Accreditation by QAA, providing trust and confidence for your students and international partners. IPA provides opportunities to:
- Demonstrate effective quality assurance measured against international benchmarks
- Strengthen your global positioning
- Drive improvement and excellence
- Develop partnerships with UK institutions
- Use the QAA International Programme Accreditation Badge on your website and marketing material.