PAASCU stands for Philippine Accrediting Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities. It is a private, voluntary, non-profit and non- stock corporation which was registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission on November 5, 1957.
PAASCU is a service organization that accredits academic programs which meet standards of quality education. In November 1967, the Bureau of Education and Culture (now the Department of Education) officially recognized PAASCU and endorsed its work as an accrediting agency. PAASCU is also one of the three founding members of the Federation of Accrediting Agencies of the Philippines (FAAP), which was established in 1977 and is authorized by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to certify the levels of accredited programs for the purpose of granting progressive deregulation and other benefits.
PAASCU has been a full member of the International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education (INQAAHE). As of 2005, INQAAHE is composed of 150 accrediting agencies coming from over 60 different countries. These agencies have also created regional networks, one of which is the Asia-PAcific Quality Network (APQN), with PAASCU being one of its active members.
PAASCU also has linkages with the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), which is a private, nonprofit national organization that coordinates accreditation activity in the United States, as well as with the National Committee on Foreign Medical Education and Accreditation (NCFMEA), which is based in Washington, D.C.
WHAT ARE PAASCU’S STANDARDS?
The Association does not impose arbitrary standards. The survey forms developed by PAASCU identify principles and practices which are found in excellent institutions. The statements in the survey forms are more qualitative rather than quantitative. The Association does not have specific formulas to apply or particular patterns of organization to follow. The criteria and survey instruments are merely tools to help the school measure educational quality. They are intended to serve as a guide for institutions as they strive for excellence and for accreditors as they assess institutional achievement. The standards reflect a realistic appraisal of the school’s resources and their efficient utilization to help the institution achieve its goals.
HOW ARE THESE STANDARDS MEASURED?
Much emphasis is placed on the formulation of the school’s purposes and objectives. Only when its goals are clear can the school discover the extent to which such purposes and objectives are being achieved.
Essential in the accreditation process is the self-survey made by an institution applying for accreditation. The self-survey is an analysis by its own staff of the institution’s educational resources and effectiveness in relation to its own purposes and objectives.
PAASCU judges an institution not by comparison with other institutions but primarily by the degree to which each institution’s own avowed purposes are matched by actual practice in the various areas being evaluated. Thus, a school is judged on the basis of the “total pattern” presented by it.
Benefits and Incentives
Level I/ Level II:
Full administrative deregulation, provided that reports of promotion of students and lists of graduates are available for review by CHED at all times.
Financial deregulation in terms of setting tuition and other school fees and charges.
Authority to revise the curriculum without CHED approval provided that CHED and Professional Regulation Commission minimum requirements and guidelines, where applicable, are complied with and the revised curriculum is submitted to CHED Regional Offices.
Authority to graduate students from accredited courses or programs of study in the levels accredited without prior approval of the CHED and without need for Special Orders.
Priority in the awards of grants/subsidies or funding assistance from CHED Higher Education Development Fund (HEDF) for scholarships and faculty development, facilities improvement and other development programs.
Right to use on its publications or advertisements the word “ACCREDITED” pursuant to CHED policies and rules.
Limited visitation, inspection and/or supervision by CHED supervisory personnel or representatives.
Membership in PAASCU:
gives the institution and its faculty a sense of direction based on a clearer selfimage.
facilitates transfer of students.
provides guidance for parents and students in the choice of worthy schools.
gives prestige for member schools, justified by the possession of quality standards and the continuing effort to maintain them at a high level.