QQI was established in 2012 by the Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Act 2012. In May 2017 the Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton, T.D., announced that the Government has approved the draft outline of a Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Amendment) Bill. Once enacted this legislation will provide new powers to QQI to improve the quality of our education and training system. These new powers include the awarding by QQI of the International Education Mark.
To keep up to date with ongoing progress on the new Bill, please visit the Department of Education and Skills website here.
International Education Mark (IEM)
QQI will authorise use of an International Education Mark (IEM) by providers who have demonstrated that:
• They have statutory quality assurance arrangements in place
• They have arrangements in place for access, transfer and progression
• Their programmes lead to awards in the NFQ
• They are compliant with the Code of Practice for Provision of Programmes of Education and Training to International Learners
In order to be eligible to access the IEM, providers will first be required to establish quality assurance procedures. This agreement confirms a provider’s capacity to develop, maintain and improve the quality of education, training, research and related services for all learners. Providers will then demonstrate compliance with the Code of Practice, as well as meet other general conditions which may be stipulated.
Revised legislation to enable the introduction of the IEM is currently being drafted by the Department of Education and Skills. QQI will communicate plans for the introduction of the IEM when available.
Code of Practice for Provision of Programmes of Education and Training to International Learners
QQI has published a Code of Practice for Provision of Programmes of Educaiton and Training to International Learners. The Code of Practice includes the provision of pastoral care services that support international learners and their successful participation in an Irish education and training environment.
The Code highlights the following key areas of focus for providers:
• General requirements including arrangements for protection of enrolled learners
• Marketing, recruitment and admissions practices
• Fees, refunds and subsistence
• Supports and services for international learners
It also requires providers to be compliant with the London Statement, a code of ethics for the use of international education recruitment agents.
Providers are encouraged to give due attention to the Code of Practice when continuing to develop their quality assurance procedures. Providers are encouraged to ensure that all relevant staff are familiar with the Code and the needs of international learners. Providers seeking to have programmes validated (approved) by QQI and who wish to offer those programmes to international learners, must comply with the Code.
Students and their families may find the resources at the following link helpful. These resources have been developed by Irish higher education institutions for learners. QQI takes no responsibility for the content of externally linked material.