Accreditation in the Education system refers to a kind of quality assurance in which all of the services provided by an educational institute are tested by a third party to make sure that specific terms and conditions are met. This process is also considered as an inspection. “ Inspection is an important element of the management process and hence of school management. Inspection helps in evaluation of the achievement level regarding predetermined objectives in education and training ” (Bursalıoğlu, Z. (1994). Okul Yönetiminde Yeni Yapı ve Davranış. Ankara: Pegem Yayınları.) . There are two types of Accreditations; one is institutional accreditation in which accreditors evaluate the whole institute covering every field of education whereas other type of accreditation is individual accreditation in which accreditors mainly focus on the academic personnel themselves.
● Who are accreditors
In the majority of countries the government itself handles educational accreditation like the Ministry of Education. In the United State this obligation is done by a third party (non-profit organization). These are private firms known as accreditors. These accreditors are now providing accreditation for schools outside the US as a growing trend in the academic accreditation industry. This is due to the high competition between international schools in different countries in the world such as the Arabic Gulf, Turkey, North Africa and some countries in Europe as well.
In the United states these organizations must be verified by the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI) in order to receive federal funds and any other type of federal recognition. In other countries, the National ministry of education approves the accreditation of an international accreditation body since the standards met are in many cases higher than those used by the ministry itself. Ministries of education set a national standard based on their local schools. International schools however need to conform with a higher level of standard, hence international accreditation bodies like those in USA or Canada.
● History of Educational Accreditation
Historically, Accreditation in Educational institutes came into existence along the formation of the American higher education system. At that point when it was an emerging problem, there was no any control point or any other central body existed to introduce certain educational terms and conditions. In the late 19th century, there were unclear boundaries to the distinctions between the educational content for postsecondary and secondary institutions because there was no consensus regarding academic content. Due to absence of boundaries it was becoming an issue, to overcome this giant educational problem in 1895 the first postsecondary association came into existence. The purpose of this association was to distinguish educational content between postsecondary and secondary institutes and to establish particular guidelines and instructions for peer review as condition for membership. With the passage of time several other associations were being established and became members of accreditation. Thus in the early 1970s, no longer all but a small number of diploma granting institutes were either accredited or candidates of accreditation .