The Accreditation Council works at the Public Accreditation Agency for Higher Education and is organized as defined by the law no. 9741, date 21.5.2007 “On higher education in the Republic of Albania”, amended.
2. The number of Accreditation Council members is 11 (eleven), out of which five members have been nominated by institutions of higher education; 3 (three) experts of the field of study, two of whom are foreigners, proposed by international accreditation agencies; an expert, representative of private sector; a representative from the Ministry of Education and Science; a representative from the Council of Higher Education and Science, and a student nominated by the National Student Council.
3. The Minister of Education and Science appoints the members of the Accreditation Council from the candidates proposed by the represented parties. 4. The Accreditation Council Chairman is selected from the candidates proposed by this council. He is appointed and dismissed by the Prime Minister, upon the proposal of the Minister of Education and Science.
5. The Council carries out its activities independently and in accordance with its regulation, approved by the Minister of Education and Science.
6. For issues that are not covered by the expertise of board members or when deemed necessary, the Council may ask experts or external consultants to assist in formulating decisions.
7. The Council meets no more than 9 (nine) times per year.
8. The AC member who misses the 1 / 3 of the meetings, is substituted .
9. The Accreditation Council members must respect the laws and regulations that govern conflicts of interest.
10. The Accreditation Council meeting takes place, when there are no fewer than 8 (eight) members. It is not held if the two foreign experts are not present.
11. The Accreditation Council decisions are taken by qualified majority, by ¾ of all members
Duties of the Accreditation Council
The main activities of the Accreditation Council are:
1. Adopts the procedures and evaluation methodology, and key general and specific documents to the external evaluation and accreditation of academic programs and institutions of higher education proposed by the Public Accreditation Agency for Higher Education, based on legal acts in force, and taking into consideration relevant European guidelines and models.
2. Compiles report of activities conducted at the end of each year, in cooperation with the Public Accreditation Agency for Higher Education, which is sent to the Minister of Education and Science and made public.
3. Reviews and approves the composition of the expert group for any external assessment proposed by the agency, after their selection from the general list of experts according to areas that will be assessed.
4. Based on the legislation in force it reviews the assessment made by PAAHE and recommends to the Minister whether to open or not new programs of study at public institutions of higher education.
5. Reviews the final report of an external evaluation and makes relevant recommendations for accreditation, which are sent to the Minister of Education and Science.
6. Investigates the complaints or claims against the external evaluation report by the entity concerned. The Council assesses the materials submitted, as well as the claims of the party interested and decides whether to take them into consideration or not, or decides to send another external assessment group for assessment at the institution. In all cases, the expert and council members’ opinions are expressed in the minutes and the final decision should be grounded. The opposite opinions are attached to the recommendation decision. When making e decision, the Accreditation Council may require additional information or corrections from the agency or the institution to be assessed.
7. The Director of the Public Accreditation Agency for Higher Education attends, with no voting right, the meetings of the Accreditation Council. One of the sectors of the Public Accreditation Agency for Higher Education plays also the role of the secretary of the Accreditation Council.
8. Formulates its judgment, based on the results of assessments performed by other agencies under section 5 of this regulation. The latter, may be asked in the meeting to argue its opinion, indicating the standards used for external assessment.
9. Supported by the Public Accreditation Agency for Higher Education and based on relevant European recommendations AC defines the principles, criteria and procedures for mutual recognition of accreditation obtained by other agencies, as well as for procedures for accreditation of joint programs between two or more Albanian institutions of higher education, or in cooperation with a foreign institution of higher education.
Other activities of the Accreditation Council
The Accreditation Council performs other activities as:
1. Cooperates with the Council of Higher Education and Science to formulate for the Minister of Education and Science recommendations for quality assurance in higher education and scientific research.
2. Cooperates with the Council of Higher Education and Science to formulate both qualitative and quantitative minimum requirements regarding human ,infrastructure and financial resources, suitability of study programs and research capacity, required for opening different categories of new higher education institutions, new and basic units, including the opening of subsidiaries, as well as the required standards for programs of study of three cycles.