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On the 28th February, the Minster for Education the Hon Simon Birmingham addressed the Universities Australia Conference in Canberra. He spoke about the outcomes of a review conducted by the Higher Education Standards Panel (the Panel) in 2016 to reduce the regulatory and administrative burden associated with professional and academic accreditation processes.

The Department of Education and Training commissioned PhillipsKPA consultants to map the scale and scope of professional accreditation activities in the Australian higher education sector.

The report Professional Accreditation: Mapping the territory was released in February 2018.

The report stated “In general, professional accreditation is valued by all stakeholders. Most accreditors and education providers stress the value of accreditation as a stimulus to self and peer review, a benchmarking process and an opportunity for continuing quality assurance and improvement.”

The report identified elements of good practice and emerging trends in accreditation as well as opportunities for improvement; which informed the recommendations made by the Panel.

A key recommendation from the Panel is that assessments of higher education courses by professional accreditation bodies should focus exclusively on matters that are profession-specific; and accept that academic accreditation by Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) provides appropriate assurance of quality for matters covered by the Higher Education Standards Framework.

In 2016, Australian OHS Education Accreditation Board (AOHSEAB) aligned their accreditation criteria to TEQSA standards to reduce duplication for the Universities. Following implementation in 2017, a review is currently underway further reduce duplication and ensure the focus of re-accreditation remains on helping to grow the knowledge base of OHS and the OHS profession. This is in complete alignment with the direction announced by the Minister on the 28th February and AOHSEAB considers that the review will benefit from benchmarking against the recommendations of the Panel.

For media enquiries:
Australian OHS Education Accreditation Board contacts:
Registrar Meagan Browne, [email protected],
Mob 0413 483 203

This media release is also available as a PDF.

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