Washington Accord Accreditation: presentation in Chile of the Acredita CI accreditation model for science-based engineering
On Thursday, August 16, 2018 took place in the main auditorium of the College of Engineers of
Chile the 1st Seminar Workshop for the Washington Accord Accreditation. The event, organized by Acredita CI in conjunction with the Commission of Education of the College of Engineers, was attended by more than 120 people, representatives of engineering both in the academy and in the industry.
At the annual meeting of the International Engineering Alliance (IEA) held in London, United Kingdom, between June 24 and 29 of this year, the Agencia Acreditadora del Colegio de Ingenieros de Chile, Acredita CI, on behalf of Chile, was admitted as provisional member of the Washington Accord, whose mission is to guarantee the substantial equivalence of engineering education among the member countries of the Accord through the accreditation of programs. For graduates of accredited programs, their professional mobility among member countries is substantially facilitated.
Substantial equivalence establishes that accredited engineering programs “educates graduates who are in a position to find employment, as they are expected to undergo a formative process and an experiential learning that leads them to the achievement of substantially equivalent professional competencies”. That is, they are not expected to have identical results and content, but they are capable of moving towards a similar level of professional development.
The Accredita CI accreditation process contemplates a reflection on the compliance of 11 evaluation criteria. The program, in particular, will account for the compliance of seven specific criteria with emphasis on the graduation profile, which must contemplate the 12 attributes defined by the Washington Accord, which are: Engineering knowledge; Problem analysis; Design / development of solutions; Investigation; Use of modern tools; Engineering and society; Environment and sustainability; Ethics; Individual work and on team; Communication; Project and finance management; and Lifelong learning. Accredita CI will award the Washington Accord Accreditation to those programs that demonstrate that they incorporate these attributes into their graduation profile or that they are at an advanced stage for it, based on permanent improvement mechanisms.
In order to publicize the scope of the Accord in Chile, Acredita CI, in conjunction with the Education Commission of the College of Engineers of Chile, organized the “1st Workshop Seminar for the Washington Accord Accreditation”, an event in which appointment of more than 120 engineering educators from Universities from Antofagasta to Puerto Montt.
The activity began at 2:00 pm with words of welcome and introduction from Dr. Felisa Córdova, President of the Education Commission of the College of Engineers of Chile, later, Dr. Yadran Eterovic, Director of the Department of Science of the Computing of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile and president of the Accreditation Council of the Acredita CI Technology Area, presented the experience of receiving external evaluators in international accreditation processes, then Mr. Mario Letelier, president of the Chilean Society of Engineering Education, spoke about the impact of international accreditation on the quality and relevance of Chilean engineering education.
After sharing a coffee, at 4:00 pm Mr. Enrique Álvarez, President of ICACIT from Peru, the first Latin American agency to be incorporated as a signatory member of the Washington Accord, spoke about the experience of accrediting programs under international criteria, the demands that this entails and the main findings.
Then, at 4:45 p.m., Ms. Jessica Pizarro, general manager of Acredita CI, explained about the accreditation model for the Washington Accord that will be implemented in Chile, what would be the criteria to apply, the way in which these criteria would be applied, the benefits and the added value that implies having the Washington Accord Accreditation, as well as disseminated the proposal of a model of engineering education designed by the College of Engineers of Chile based on the National Qualifications Framework, which establishes that a professional program can be taught in 300 SCT, that is, in five years of education.
Finally, between 5:30 and 6:30 p.m., all the exhibitors of the day went up to the stage to answer
the questions and comments of the attendees.
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