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

FAQ Related to Private FET College FAQs

Does Umalusi accredit private providers of curriculum material, including teaching and learning aids?
What is accreditation?
What is Umalusi's quality assurance approach for FET Colleges?
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
We are in the process of establishing a college. Do we start with accreditation or registration?
Accreditation: Should you wish to offer qualifications registered on our sub framework, you should start with applying and receiving Umalusi Accreditation. 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).
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Their accreditation status will be reviewed and consequently, the college's accreditation may be withdrawn.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
Are all colleges expected to apply for accreditation with Umalusi?
No. Public TVET colleges are not required to apply for accreditation. According to the amended General and Further Education and Training Quality Assurance (GENFETQA) Act, 2001, Umalusi is required to quality assure private colleges that are registered in accordance with Further Education and Training Colleges Act,2006 (Act No.16 of 2006). Furthermore, not all private colleges are expected to apply for accreditation with Umalusi. According to the National Qualification Framework (NQF) Act, 2008, Umalusi is only responsible for the quality assurance of private colleges that offer qualifications that fall within its sub-framework of qualifications. These are private colleges that intend to offer the following programmes: National Certificate (Vocational) and/or Report 190/191(N1 -N3 Engineering Studies only)
What is the preparation needed for site Visits
This is basically the ability of all staff to be able to display an understanding of applicable policies and demonstrate that they can implement accordingly. Umalusi conducts a presite visit prior to the site visit to explain what is needed .The purpose of the presite visit is to ensure that the provider understands what is required and the programme for the day. This enables to site to be prepared and raise any additional concerns that they may have.
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).
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 college at Quality Promotion Workshops.
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.
As far as we are concerned we comply with all the provisional accreditation criteria but our accreditation report says we are not fully compliant.
To address this, compare your college submitted evidence with Umalusi's evidence requirements. If you still feel that your college is compliant, then your college can apply for the review of the accreditation decision. However, a non-refundable admin fee is payable. The fee is revised on an annual basis and is available on request. Enquiries: Ms Vani Chatty Telephone: 012 349 1510 x 256 / 012 030 00800 Email : / Fax : 012 349 1511
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.
Is it compulsory to submit biennial monitoring reports?
Yes. Accredited independent colleges 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.
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. We also conduct a pre site visit with the college to ensure that all at the college understands what is expected of them.
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.
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.
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.
There are surely private colleges out there which are not accredited. Is Umalusi doing anything about them?
Yes. Umalusi is identifying unaccredited private colleges that offer qualifications on our sub framework, through its site visit process and through other means. Once the colleges are identified, the necessary steps are taken to ensure that they comply with relevant legislation. Should you be aware of any college which may not be registered or accredited please send its name and/or contact details to or
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'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.
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.
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. In the case of a company, financial statements are available for public scrutiny.
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, college heads, senior teachers or subject experts.
Does the public know about our college's accreditation status?
Accredited colleges appear on Umalusi's website. This information can be accessed at
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.

Enquiries : Mary Malia
Telephone : 012 349 1510 x 332 / 012 030 0775
Email : /
Fax : 012 349 1511

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December 2018
Official Newsletter of Umalusi

Annual Report 2017/2018

Annual Report 2017/2018

Official Annual Report of Umalusi



Issue 5 - Feb 2018

Basic education
Higher education & training
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