Higher Education Accreditation in the Philippines

Accreditation is a process for assessing and upgrading the educational quality of higher education institutions and programs through self-evaluation and peer judgment. It is a system of evaluation based on the standards of an accrediting agency, and a means of assuring and improving the quality of education. The process leads to a grant of accredited status by an accrediting agency and provides public recognition and information on educational quality.

Accreditation of Private institutions
Voluntary accreditation of all higher education institutions is subject to the policies of the Commission on Higher Education. Voluntary accrediting agencies in the private sector are the Philippine Accrediting Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (PAASCU), the Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities' Commission on Accreditation (PACUCOA), and the Association of Christian Schools, Colleges and Universities Accrediting Association Inc. (ACSCU-AAI) which all operate under the umbrella of the Federation of Accrediting Agencies of the Philippines (FAAP), which itself is the certifying agency authorized by CHED. Accreditation can be either of programs or of institutions.

All of the institutions accredited by these three agencies certified by FAAP are private institutions. Under CHED's Revised Policies and Guidelines on Voluntary Accreditation in Aid of Quality and Excellence and Higher Education, there are four levels of program accreditation, with Level IV being the highest.

Two institutions, Ateneo de Manila University and De La Salle University-Manila were granted Level IV accreditation pursuant to the provisions of CHED Order, CMO 31 of 1995, but their Level IV institutional accreditation lapsed. Ateneo was granted Level IV re-accreditation in 2011.

At present, nine universities have current institutional accreditation. Institutional accreditation is the highest certification that can be given to an educational institution after a consideration of the university's number of individual program accreditations and the result of an overall evaluation of the quality of its facilities, services and faculty. These schools are Adventist University of the Philippines, Ateneo de Manila University, Ateneo de Davao University, Ateneo de Naga University, Centro Escolar University, Central Philippine University, De La Salle University - Dasmariñas, Silliman University, Trinity University of Asia, and University of Santo Tomas.

At present the Ateneo de Manila University, is the only university in the Philippines that has been simultaneously granted both Level IV Status and institutional accreditation. Silliman University on the other hand is recorded to have the highest number of accredited programs in the country, fourteen of which are on Level IV accreditation status while simultaneously bearing Institutional Accreditation by the Federation of Accrediting Agencies of the Philippines.

Accreditation for Public Institutions
Accrediting agencies for government-supported institutions are the Accrediting Agency of Chartered Colleges and Universities in the Philippines (AACCUP), and the Association of Local Colleges and Universities Commission on Accreditation (ALCUCOA). Together they formed the National Network of Quality Assurance Agencies (NNQAA) as the certifying agency for government-sponsored institutions. However NNQAA does not certify all government-sponsored institutions.

The Technical Vocational Education Accrediting Agency of the Philippines (TVEAAP) was established and registered with the Securities Exchange Commission on 27 October 1987. On 28 July 2003, the FAAP board accepted the application of TVEAAP to affiliate with FAAP.

AACCUP and PAASCU are active members of the International Network of Quality Assurance Agencies for Higher Education (INQAAHE), and the Asia Pacific Quality Network (APQN).