The procedure of institutional and programme accreditation is designed by the agency in accordance with European and international standards, which include the following stages:
- An educational organization submits an application for accreditation with a brief description of its activities and copies of the general license and licenses on study programmes to the IQAA;
- IQAA concludes an agreement on carrying out the accreditation procedure with the educational organization concerned. The agreement specifies the rights and obligations of the parties, the cost and terms of the procedure, including the stages;
- The IQAA appoints a coordinator, who visits the educational organization, if the Agency is not familiar with the institution. The coordinator holds a training seminar for the working groups of the institution explaining the accreditation procedure and preparation of the self-assessment report;
- The educational organization conducts a self-assessment procedure and writes a self-assessment report in accordance with the IQAA’s standards and criteria of accreditation;
- The educational organization submits the first version of the self-assessment report and IQAA organizes its review by independent experts, appointed by the relevant Accreditation Committee of IQAA. The expert evaluation results are sent to the educational organization and if necessary, the self-assessment report should be corrected by the institution;
- The educational organization submits the final version of the self-assessment report with annexes to the Agency;
- IQAA holds a preliminary review in the framework of institutional accreditation.
- IQAA forms a competent group of experts (auditors), which includes representatives of Kazakhstani educational institutions, international experts, employers and students. The expert group is formed in parallel with the expertise of the self-assessment report;
- IQAA informs the educational organization on the composition of the expert group in advance. In case of any suspicions of a conflict of interest, the educational organization has the right to request the Agency to replace an expert (auditor) by enclosing a written reasoned explanation;
- The IQAA coordinator sends self-assessment materials and documents on methodological support to the expert group members for their preparation a month before the external review;
- The IQAA coordinator conducts a preliminary webinar (online) with the expert group in order to train them and discuss organizational issues and preparation to the site visit; a briefing (at the university) is conducted before the commencement of the external review (site visit);
- The expert group and the IQAA coordinator conduct an external review of the educational organization (the site visit usually lasts three days for institutional accreditation and two days for specialized accreditation of a group of study programmes). The external review is aimed at assessment of correspondence of information presented in the self-assessment report with the actual state of affairs in the educational organization;
- The expert group forms an external review report indicating fields for improvement, recommendations and good practice, and sends it to the IQAA coordinator;
- The IQAA coordinator sends the received external review report to the educational organization for elimination of factual inaccuracies, if any of such are present. The educational organization also has the right to submit its written commentary on the external review report, which should be reviewed together with other materials at the meeting of the Accreditation Council of IQAA on decision-making;
- If necessary, the educational organizations can use a complaints procedure.
- Based on the self-assessment report and the external review report, IQAA coordinator prepares a conclusion, which is first agreed with the Accreditation committee, and a presentation for the Accreditation Council;
- The Accreditation Council of IQAA at its meeting reviews all necessary materials and makes a decision on accreditation of the educational organization/study programme on the basis of a self-assessment report and the external review report, a presentation and a conclusion. However, with the account of opinions from members of the Accreditation council, additional information about a specific programme and evidence on the educational organization, the assessment can be changed;
- IQAA notifies the educational organization and the expert group members, who conducted the external review, on the decision taken by the Accreditation Council of IQAA;
- If necessary, the educational organizations can use appeals procedure;
- IQAA includes accredited educational organizations and study programmes to the Register of IQAA and publishes them on the website in the sections List of accredited TVET organizations and List of accredited study programmes;
- IQAA sends information on accredited educational organizations and study programmes to the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Kazakhstan for their inclusion to the National Registers;
- IQAA conducts a post-accreditation monitoring of accredited educational organizations and study programmes.