Pacucoa accredits accountancy, 26 grad school programs

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TWENTY-SIX programs of the UST Graduate School received the coveted Level IV accreditation status from the Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities’ Commission on Accreditation (Pacucoa) while the Accountancy program of the University has received Level III accreditation.

Pacucoa gave the Level IV status to 15 master of arts programs and 11 master of science programs.

Master’s programs in development studies, economics, educational management and leadership, English language studies, guidance and counseling, history, hospital administration, literature, philosophy, political science, psychology and public administration retained the status. The master of arts in curriculum and instruction program was added to the list.

The master’s programs in biology, biology education, chemistry, microbiology, pharmacy, chemistry education, food science, mathematics education, entrepreneurship, nursing and medical technology also obtained the Level IV status.

“It was extremely tough since we were applying for Level IV. Research was the priority. But they also looked into our internationalization efforts and community and extension programs,” Graduate School Dean Marilu Madrunio said in an e-mail to the Varsitarian.

“We were actually hopeful that we would be granted Level IV by PACUCOA. During the interviews between the accreditors and the faculty, the accreditors and the students, and the accreditors and the staff, all meetings went well and the accreditors seemed to be very satisfied with the responses from our stakeholders,” she added.

According to the Pacucoa website, Level IV accreditation grants full autonomy to each program for five years.

It also enables school administrators to offer new graduate programs and open learning or distance education and extension classes related to existing Level IV courses, without the need for prior approval of the Commission on Higher Education.

The Level IV status for the 26 programs is valid until 2021.

Meanwhile, AMV-College of Accountancy Dean Patricia Empleo said she has already expected the accreditation before the formal announcement of the accreditors.

“There was a closing conference with the accreditors and based on the comments of the accreditors, I felt that we have been granted [the third level] already,” Empleo said in an interview with the Varsitarian.

The Bachelor of Science in Management Accounting (BSMA) program of the college has received the candidate status together with the third level accreditation of the Bachelor of Science in Accountancy program.

“For a program to be accredited it must at least produce three batches of graduates so we still need to (produce) these batches of graduates of our BSMA,” Empleo said.

The BSMA program has already produced four batches of graduates.

Empleo said, the college will not limit themselves with the local accreditation as they prepare for the international ASEAN University Network assessment.

“We will be subjected to an international accreditation assessment this February 2017 [because] we are not limiting ourselves to local accreditation,” she said.

Empleo said the college will commit to improvements in facilities and delivery of instruction in view of the recent accreditation.

“We commit our students that there will be improvement in facilities, improvement of delivery in instruction although they perceive differently the delivery of instruction in the college,” Empleo said.

The Level III status for the Accountancy program will be valid from to April 2019 while the Level IV status for the 21 programs is valid until 2021.

According to the Pacucoa website, Level III accreditation status grants school administrators the authority to revise the curriculum and set the tuition and other fees without the need for approval of the Commission on Higher Education.

It also enables administrators to offer new graduate programs, and open learning or distance education and extension classes related to the course.

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