Accreditation at UWI St. Augustine
I am pleased to announce that our second bid for institutional accreditation has been successful and The UWI St. Augustine has been granted Continuing Institutional Accreditation with the Accreditation Council of Trinidad and Tobago (ACTT) for the maximum term of seven years (2018 – 2025).
You would all be aware that since 2016 we have been engaged in the process of continuing institutional accreditation with the ACTT, a rigorous introspection which saw us review our processes, operations and programmes via a comprehensive Self-Study Report, a site visit from external evaluators and a subsequent evaluators’ report.
The following highlights were points of commendation coming out of the evaluators’ report:
(1) The Self-Study Report was accurate, reflective, analytical and where appropriate self-critical. These criteria together with extensive supporting documentation gave it credibility.
(2) The campus’ decision to include a chapter on Research in its self-study report was commendable. It allowed the evaluation team to better understand the work of the campus and gave context to research led and research informed teaching.
(3) The campus has strong leadership at senior management levels including the faculties, the Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL), the Division of Student Services and Development (DSSD) and the Guild of Students.
(4) There is ‘great progress’ in the professionalisation of teaching and learning. CETL and the Certificate in Teaching and Learning (CUTL) were highly commended in this regard.
(5) The campus boasts a quality assurance system that is mature, sophisticated and reflective of best international practice.
(6) UWI St. Augustine has a well-embedded student centered culture.
(7) The campus has efficiently managed a fifteen per cent (15%) reduction in Government financial support while protecting teaching and learning resources and maintaining a health cash balance. Efficiencies at the Faculty and Department levels were particularly notable.
While we are pleased with the commendations we know that making our campus the best it can be requires continuous, data driven and innovative approaches. The recommendations coming out of the evaluators’ report are very valuable as we move forward.
Recommendations included the Campus’ need to:
(1) Strengthen the processes for monitoring and evaluating progress largely at the level of campus implementation.
(2) Provide a clearer indication of the baseline for measuring some of the key performance indicators in the strategic plan.
(3) Take early action on development of the Campus and Faculty operational plans to raise awareness and manage expectations regarding the delivery of the Triple A Strategy; overall awareness of the strategy was good.
(4) Take steps to change the perception that classroom observations only occur in response to student complaints and ensure that they are a regular part of supportive mentoring.
I extend sincere thanks to all members of our campus community who supported the accreditation process whether by availing yourselves for working groups, aiding the self-study by participating in focus groups or simply championing the overall bid for quality assurance at our campus.
During the accreditation period the campus can expect to undergo a midterm review and begin its third bid in 2024.
On April 5, the St. Augustine Campus was officially presented at a signing ceremony hosted by the ACTT.
Professor Brian Copeland
Pro Vice-Chancellor and Campus Principal
UWI St. Augustine