mistakes to avoid while applying for NAAC accreditation

Introduction

India has two most illustrious bodies of accreditation; the first one is the National Board of Accreditation(NBA), and the second one is the National Assessment and Accreditation Council(NAAC). If you claim to be a seasoned educator, you must be well versed with these accreditations.

Yet, for a new college administrator, who aims to gain these accreditations, questions like: “What are NAAC or Accreditations?” or “ What are NBA Accreditation?”  are pretty evident to arise.

This write-up is a detailed answer to the questions and the common mistakes one can make with NAAC accreditations.

What is the NAAC Accreditation?

The NAAC accreditation is a method to assess and later ensure standardization of education in higher establishments in the country. 

The University Grant Commission (UGC) has given a declaration specifying that each educational institution, whether a college or university, should get accreditation by the council of NAAC (National Assessment and Accreditation Council).

The NAAC accreditation aims to enhance the margin of quality for education. 

Contrasting the traditionally carried out educational system, NAAC intends the throughout progress enhancement of the students. They do so by aiding them in teaching knowledge and skill in their overall education.

Educational institutions accredited with NAAC certification are subject to providing the students with “quality education.” That is why educational establishments can boost student learning results by attaining the NAAC certifications.

Top common mistakes or what can go wrong with NAAC accreditation

As an institutional body, in a full flow, when you are shaping up and committed to delivering only quality education, you know what importance and vitality NAAC can hold on your journey to success. 

After tutoring two successful batches of graduates and completing six years in the Nobel education service, you get eligible for NAAC Accreditation. And, you don’t want to mess it up with mistakes that can ruin your effort to get accredited. 

Apart from keeping up with the entire certification process, there are chances of running into some mistakes that can flip the accreditation for the institutions.

Nevertheless, educational institutions need to look out for not performing the following mistakes with their NAAC accreditations:

Hurrying Up for Accreditation without Proper Data

For an organization to be accredited, it must demonstrate that it has met all program requirements. However, just because an organization has completed the program requirements does not mean it is ready for accreditation. 

Many organizations rush toward getting certified by the Accreditation without gaining the proper insights into the process.

The quality work takes time, do not hurry up, give sufficient time to your work force

It is vitally important to have the relevant data to support your claim. If you fail at it you stand a risk of losing your accreditation. 

It’s difficult for small organizations with limited resources to organize everything in order, but there are ways to minimize the damage. 

For example, you could use existing data sources such as a CRM system or other internal reports. You could also create a system that allows you to regularly track and report on compliance with standards to give yourself time to demonstrate compliance.

Failing to produce performance metrics for your educational program can make you lose credibility for accreditation. The committee can raise an issue about the inadequate data provided by you, and you may lose it all here. 

Rather than just hurrying the process,  it is better to keep up with it steadily, and you can achieve the organizational goal of getting accredited. 

Ongoing debates within organizations can derail you from accreditation

It is like the saying: ‘too many cooks spoil the broth”. Where there are many minds involved, there will always be clashes.

work environment within the organization must be positive

Getting accredited is an organizational goal, and it is essential to convey its vitality to all the team. There should not be any pressure or miscommunication among the team members. 

How are we going to achieve this goal?

Who is responsible for what?

What is the ideal process? 

These kinds of questions can create a lot of confusion. It is ideal to encounter them beforehand. 

The confusion creates room for divergent opinions and divides the team into multiple groups with strong opinions that are stacked against the common goal, which in this case is to get accredited by NAAC.

When you are applying for NAAC accreditation, make sure each member on the team is well-aware of the standards and is heard on the opinions that he/she shares. If not done in the first place, you may end up losing what you want to achieve.

It’s important to be inclusive and inclusive means everyone is heard. There needs to be a mutual understanding and opinion within the organization about being accredited with NAAC.

Incomplete document support

Once the organization is eligible for NAAC Accreditation, you should start collecting the required documents, reports and data to be submitted to the accrediting body. 

Before the submission, documents must be reviewed multiple times by the senior management

Here’s the list sourced from the NAAC website to support your initiative:

  • Latest Affiliation letter from the Affiliating University.
  • Latest Recognition/approval letter from Statutory Regulatory Authority (SRA) like AICTE, MCI, etc.
  • UGC 2f and 12(B) recognition certificates along with the latest Plan General Development Grant release letter from UGC.
  • Letter from UGC regarding the award of CPE/UPE.
  • For Autonomous colleges, a UGC letter confirming  Autonomous Status.
  • Proof of uploading the All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) certificate.
  • If change in name, submit approvals of relevant authorities/ University/MHRD/UGC
  • Approval of UGC/MHRD/State government for the establishment of the university.
  • AIU or other governmental agencies’ approval for standalone institutes.
  • Upload AQAR’s on the website to provide URL details.
  • Self-declaration by the HEIs complies with rules and regulations of Central Government, State Government, UGC, Affiliating University, and other applicable SRA in the format provided by NAAC.
  • Self-declaration concerning Affiliation status in the format provided by NAAC.

The accreditation will not be valid or complete if you fail to present the proof documents to the NAAC body.

To make the certification process trouble-free, it is in the best interest to present all the documents as proof at the earliest.

Required Data and Information for the Accreditation Process are Inaccurate

It’s no surprise, that if you fail to provide accurate data, the NAAC body that is inspecting your institute or university isn’t going to be tolerant of this. 

The accuracy of the submitted documents is directly linked with the credibility of the institute

As an organization, you for sure have built an empowered team. With a no to the minimum effort, you can divide the responsibilities to arrange the required data and information from various departments.

It will be a great initiative to perform multi-checks by credible team members to ensure the accuracy of the data. 

The data required for the NAAC accreditation have to be accurate. The more accurate the input data is, the easier it is to fulfill the submission requirements.

You have to be sure that all the shortcomings and inaccuracies are avoided in the input data. 

Not abiding by the format

Every process, including AQAR, IIQA, or SSR, has a Standard Operating Process (SOP) to be followed. Failing at it may end up failing the eligibility criteria for the accreditation. 

the document format must be followed for all the documents

The NAAC has drafted a set of standards for the institutions that are applying for accreditation. This draft specifies the formats and rules explaining the entitlement to get certified. 

Just as in every business, the ways of enhancing the quality have an out-of-the-box capacity of standards. Educational institutions must zero down and figure out the added requisites to fulfill the set of measures across the global standards.

It is mandatory to abide by the format to get the NAAC accreditation certification for an educational institution

Overlooking the smallest of mistakes

pay attention to details, as small mistakes can turn out to be a great loss

The smallest of mistakes that go overlooked can backfire in the most unexpected ways. 

NAAC Accreditation is a recognizable feat for an institute or university, and you can’t afford to overlook tiny mistakes that can cost you lower grades.

As an ideal initiative, you can form a core team of a few authoritative members who will scrutinize all the data, documents, reports, and pitches, before the actual NAAC members look into it. 

Make this review process as rigorous as possible to avoid the eleventh-hour mishap.

Remember, even a minute miss-out or fall off (institutions’ official stamp/ document verification by the head of the institution, etc.) with every step of the process will cost an education entity their eligibility for NAAC. 

Summary

To close it off, after knowing what a NAAC accreditation can mean for an educational body and its students, make sure that the above-mentioned common mistakes are assessed when the plan of getting accredited is on the table. 

Every advantage, every process, and every mistake needs to be taken care of to validate or authenticate an educational institution’s quality of education. 

The journey does not stop here, Once accredited by NAAC, the institution can be trusted in terms of its educational quality provided. To keep up the good pace, institutes should implement continuous improvement with investment in digital technology like online admissions, on screen marking, and upskilling the human resource.

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