Relationships with Providers
Following the amalgamation of the four agencies (FETAC, HETAC, NQAI, IUQB) that created QQI, the relationships that providers and institutions had with those agencies transferred to us.
The 2012 Act establishing QQI, ensured these relationships were maintained until replaced by new quality assurance (QA)arrangements with QQI. While some of this work is complete the process is ongoing.
We use the term, ’reengagement' to describe this transition.
We work with a diverse range of private and public providers and institutions in further and higher education and training as well as in English language teaching.
Our relationships with these providers vary. For some, we act as an awarding body and external quality assurance body. For those that make their own awards, we are an external quality assurance body only.
In all cases, the reengagement process:
Recognises quality assurance arrangements in place previously
Addresses additional areas required under the 2012 Act (for instance, widened application of Protection for Enrolled Learners, or the identification of arrangements for the quality assurance of linked providers*)
Ensures that a benchmark for quality assurance applies equally for all providers seeking to offer, or currently offering, programmes leading to QQI awards.
The policy documents that relate to re-engagement are:
Reengagement for each provider is intended to be a one-off occurrence which establishes its QA procedures with QQI in accordance with either Section 29 or 30 of the 2012 Act.
We will implement a communications process to describe reengagement and its implications for providers. This will provide clarity on:
A pathway for providers to exit transition status and to seek approval of their QA procedures
Criteria for the evaluation of QA procedures
Intended changes to allow for contingency planning
Feasibility of new approaches to the approval of QA, such as consortia.
* Linked providers are providers offering programmes that lead to awards of the Irish universities, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland or the Dublin Institute of Technology