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Umalusi - Council for Quality Assurance in General and Further Education and Training

FAQ Related to Private FET College FAQs

What happens to private colleges which do not submit their biennial monitoring reports to Umalusi?
Their accreditation status will be reviewed and consequently, the college's accreditation may be withdrawn. Such colleges will be warned about the implication of their failure to maintain their accreditation status. Furthermore, the accreditation status of colleges is regularly communicated to DHET. Failure to maintain accreditation status by colleges may have their registration status as private colleges and exam centres reviewed by DHET on the recommendation of Umalusi
How experienced and qualified are Umalusi's site evaluators?
The site evaluators and team leaders that are appointed and trained by Umalusi are experienced educationists, school heads, or senior teachers.
Is it compulsory to submit biennial monitoring reports?
Yes. Accredited independent schools are required to submit biennial monitoring reports in order for Umalusi to maintain their accreditation status. Umalusi will not extend the accreditation period of colleges which fail to submit their biennial monitoring reports. Affected colleges may have to re-apply for accreditation.
What is Umalusi's quality assurance approach for independent schools?
In line with its quality assurance mandate, Umalusi uses a set of criteria to accredit private colleges to offer a qualification that is registered on its sub-framework. Umalusi's main focus in regard to private colleges is their internal quality management of education provision. The criteria for the accreditation of a private college to offer a qualification on the General and Further Education and Training Sub-framework are as follows: Criterion 1: Mission Directed Leadership and Management Criterion 2: Teaching and Training Criterion 3: Learner and Assessment Criterion 4: Learner Support Criterion 5: Achievement and Results
How would Umalusi know if the required policies and procedures were not merely developed for the sole purpose of submission and that they don't necessarily inform/guide practice at the college?
In order to ensure that submitted policies and procedures guide the actual day-to-day operations at the college, Umalusi conducts verification site visits. The main focus of our site visits is to ascertain whether colleges have evidence of policy implementation, monitoring and review of the policies they submitted as part of their portfolio of evidence.
Does the public know about our college's accreditation status?
Accredited colleges appear on Umalusi's website. This information can be accessed at
How do we know that the evidence we provide will sufficiently support our compliance with the criteria?
Quality Promotion workshops are held across the provinces during the course of the year to assist colleges on how to apply for accreditation, the evidence required for the self-evaluation report, and what to expect during the site verification visit.
Our college offers a foreign / international curriculum/SETA programmes. Are we expected to apply for accreditation with Umalusi?
No. Foreign / international qualifications/SETA programmes fall outside of Umalusi's quality assurance mandate.
Does Umalusi accredit private providers of curriculum material, including teaching and learning aids?
No - Umalusi accredits institutionalised providers that are offering a qualification that leads to the National Certificate (Vocational) or N3 Engineering Studies (Report190/191).
Our college has reservations about evaluators seeing our confidential documents like audited financial statements.
Appointed evaluators are required to sign a code of ethics and oath of secrecy. Furthermore, evaluators/moderators are strictly monitored during the evaluation process. Under no circumstance should a financial statement be handed directly to an Umalusi evaluator/moderator.
Are all colleges expected to apply for accreditation with Umalusi?
What is accreditation?
Is the accreditation of private colleges optional or compulsory?
Private colleges that offer the curriculum leading to the National Certificate (Vocational) and or Report 190/191 (Engineering Studies) are obliged to be accredited with Umalusi and to further comply with the monitoring and evaluation requirements of Umalusi
Our college's internal policies are not documented, but are known to all staff members, learners and parents. Is it really important that they should be documented?
Yes. Policy documentation will ensure consistent and effective implementation, monitoring, review and general improvement of their effectiveness.
There are surely private colleges out there which are not accredited. Is Umalusi doing anything about them?
Yes. Umalusi is identifying unaccredited private colleges through its site visit process and through other means. Once the schools are identified, the necessary steps are taken to ensure that they comply with relevant legislation. Should you be aware of any school which may not be registered or accredited please send its name and/or contact details to
Can we use generic policies of our association in order to support our compliance with the accreditation criteria?
Yes, but they should be customised to suit the specific context of your college.
How do I apply for accreditation?
Application for accreditation is an online process, which can be accessed on Umalusi's website: Click on the link "Apply for accreditation". You will then be guided through the online application process.
How will Umalusi monitor the compliance of colleges that are accredited for 7 years?
In year 2 and year 4 of accreditation the colleges will be required to submit a monitoring report. If in some cases there are complaints about such a college, Umalusi has the right to conduct an urgent site visit.
Our college has moved to new premises since we applied for registration. How will that affect our accreditation application?
Accreditation is linked to the physical address of the college. Accreditation is granted to a provider on the availability and suitability of the physical resources as stipulated in the resource requirements of each qualification. The provider has to therefore inform Umalusi of its intention to move to a new premises. This will enable Umalusi to verify whether the new premises is compliant with the qualification requirements or not and thus confirm whether the accreditation status is still valid or not.
Who evaluates our self-evaluation and monitoring reports?
Self-evaluation and monitoring reports are evaluated by adequately qualified and experienced principals, senior teachers, and educationists, who are appointed and trained by Umalusi for that purpose.
Why does a private college have to be accredited?
Accreditation is a legal requirement for private colleges in terms of the General and Further Education and Training Quality Assurance (GENFETQA) Act, 2001, the National Qualification Framework (NQF) Act, 2008, and the Policy for the Quality Assurance of Private Adult Learning Centres, Private Further Education and Training Colleges and the Accreditation of Private Assessment Bodies (Government Gazette 33237).
We are in the process of establishing a college. Do we start with accreditation or registration?
Your college must first be accredited by Umalusi before it can apply for registration as a private college and an exam centre with Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET).
How much do we have to pay for the full accreditation fee?
The fees are based on the number of qualifications and subjects applied for by the college. These fees relate to the processing and evaluation of the college's application.The fees are payable in two tranches; the first when the Letter of intent to apply for accreditation is submitted, and the second before the site visit takes place. The fees cover the full process for the period of accreditation, including monitoring in years 2 and 4, and attendance of 1 person from the school at Quality Promotion Workshops.

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Issue 11 : March 2016
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Official Annual Report of Umalusi

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Issue 2 – June 2016

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