On Tuesday, October 6, 2020, the Slovak Rectors’ Conference was held in Banská Bystrica. The Chair of the Executive Board of the Slovak Accreditation Agency for Higher Education, Prof. Robert Redhammer, emphasized at the meeting that “higher education institution must review their mission and audit the offer of study programmes as soon as possible. They should ensure that they can comply with the new accreditation standards or, otherwise, they should repeal them. “
Institutions must carry out an internal audit because they can only apply for accreditation of new study programmes in the fields the institution already operates until the end of this year. The restriction is set by the valid Act on Quality Assurance in Higher Education. “So if schools want to combine or join two or three study programmes under a new name, they must do so in the coming weeks. At the same time, they must comply with the new requirements of accreditation standards, “added Redhammer.
Combining study programmes into broader and more robust ones will bring more benefits to schools and especially students will have more opportunities to choose subjects during their studies.
Most other study programmes can be adapted by institutions within their own competence. Even in this case, they must comply with the new accreditation standards. The whole transformation of study programmes through their modifications, cancellation or accreditation of new study programmes must be completed within 2 years from the effectiveness of the new standards by the end of August 2022.
The new requirements for study programmes include a clear definition of the qualification that the students will gain by completing their studies. Institutions will have to state publicly what professions their students will be able to pursue after completing relevant studies. Institutions will have to think about and bring closer the real needs of society and the future needs of students.