What needs to be done to apply?
This final section outlines the steps that you will be required to follow when becoming accredited. This section is both to assist you to understand what you will be required to do to become accredited but also to allow you to monitor the work of the ETQA in terms of what it is required to do to facilitate your accreditation.
Overview of the accreditation process
Step 1: Application phase
- The SASSETA provides various documents to providers applying for accreditation; these include:
- HOD:ETQA Manual
- Provider Self-assessment Guide
- Accreditation Application Form
- Assessor/Moderator Guide and Registration Form
- Accreditation Programme Evaluation Form
- What is the purpose of the self-assessment?
Self-assessment is an important developmental process whereby providers are able to sit back and reflect on their own practices and decide on how they can improve the provision of education and training to ensure the highest standards of quality. Self-assessment should not be viewed as a quick ‘‘checklist’’ completed simply for the purposes of submission to the SETA. This is your opportunity as a provider to conduct a thorough examination of your practices for your organisation’s own growth and development. The SASSETA does not require the submission of your complete self-assessment process. Instead, all that providers need to submit is a developmental plan that indicates what you still need to put in place to ensure quality learning and teaching and when and how you intend to achieve these aims. You are urged to take this process seriously and to contribute not only to increased quality of provision in your own organisation, but across the whole SASSETA sector. The Self-Evaluation Guide will assist you to complete the self-assessment process. Complete the application form with the evidence required attached.
- Complete the self-assessment.
- Submit both documents to the SETA.
- SASSETA should acknowledge receipt of application and self-assessment forms within 10 days.
- SASSETA reviews whether or not evidence requirements for the application phase have been met, and follows up on missing documentary evidence within 10 days. Providers are urged to submit any outstanding evidence as soon as possible, so as to not hold up the process of accreditation.
- Once initial evidence requirements have been met, SASSETA submits Programme Evaluation forms to the provider for completion.
- Submit programme evaluation forms, which SASSETA reviews for completeness and ensures that subject matter experts review in terms of the programme approval criteria. The ETQA will then follow up with the provider, where necessary.
Step 2: The site visit
- Once programme evaluation forms have been submitted, SASSETA will initiate processes to put together a verification and a focused programme evaluation team (although this may only be one person as the bulk of the programme evaluation activities will take place before the visit based on the forms). This subject matter expert will then review a sample of the programmes and related materials during the site visit. This site visit should take place once the ETQA is satisfied that the provider has met certain requirements pertaining to programme evaluation.
- The ETQA will inform you as a provider about the site visits so that a date can be scheduled.
- The verification and programme evaluation team are briefed and provided with the necessary documentary information.
- The site visit is conducted.
- The team reports their findings to the SASSETA who will take this recommendation through the requisite processes in the SETA (such as the ETQA committee).
- Three possible courses of action ensue:
- The process of full accreditation commences
- The process of provisional accreditation commences
- The provider is informed of "denial of accreditation" status and a decision is taken on whether or not to charge the provider for expenses incurred.
Step 3: Accreditation and provisional accreditation phase
The outcome of the evaluation of the documentation and the site visit will be one of the following:
- Full Accreditation : This will be granted if the applicant complies fully with the accreditation requirements.
- Provisional Accreditation: Provisional Accreditation will be granted to a provider who does not fully meet the requirements, subject to the implementation of the necessary corrective actions based on a mutually agreed development plan in line with the timeframes set by the SASSETA and the interests of the learners are protected.
- Denial of accreditation : The SASSETA has the right to reject any application for accreditation with costs if the provider applying for accreditation does not meet the requirements for accreditation and has no intention to implement the required corrective actions.
- Providers approved for either provisional or full accreditation will be notified in writing and issued with an Accreditation Certificate as per the SASSETA Certification Policy.
- Appeals by a provider against the non-accreditation of the provider may be lodged in writing with the SASSETA in terms of the Appeals Procedure for Providers, and the necessary arrangements for the appeal will be made. Providers should lodge their appeal in writing to the HOD: ETQA, within 21 days of receiving notification of denial of accreditation. Providers must provide substantive reasons why they are making the appeal. The SASSETA will implement suitable action.
Step 4: Monitoring phase
- The SASSETA conducts site audits at providers as an ongoing monitoring and evaluation function.
- Providers will be required to provide the SASSETA with quarterly reports complying with specified guidelines. These reports would include but not be limited to:
- progress reports on developmental plans;
- the assessment activities of the provider;
- two internal audit reports of the learning system;
- reports of information on learner records and quality managements systems; and
- Reports on Quality Management Systems
Step 5: Review
- Providers’ accreditation status is reviewed every five years
- ETQA makes a decision about its continued accreditation of the provider
It is important for providers to note in becoming accredited, they agree to adhere to the requirements of accreditation, as laid out by the SASSETA. Should the SASSETA observe that providers are not adhering to their accreditation requirements; their accreditation status could be revoked at any point, as deemed appropriate by the SASSETA ETQA.
Step 6: Application for extension of accreditation
- If a provider wishes to provide additional programmes after being awarded accreditation status, they can request that the SASSETA evaluates those particular programmes for extension of accreditation
- ETQA will then review the programme outlines of the provider, and if acceptable, provide extension of accreditation to the provider, where relevant.
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