The Commission for Academic Accreditation (CAA) of the UAE Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the International Centre of Excellence in Tourism and Hospitality Education (THE-ICE) in Australia, whereby the academic programs offered by institutions of higher education in the field of tourism and hospitality are evaluated through a joint team of external evaluators representing both accreditation commissions. This allows for granting the program the local accreditation by the Ministry along with the international accreditation by the THE-ICE. The MOU was signed by Ms. Pauline Tang, CEO of THE-ICE, and Director of the Board of International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education, from the Australian side, and by Dr. Saeed Al Hassani, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, and Professor Badr Aboul-Ela, Director of CAA, from the Emirati side. Dr. Pauline Tang praised the criteria used by the CAA, and indicated that they match the international criteria applied to the tourism and hospitality programs, which encouraged THE-ICE to work together with the CAA. Dr. Saeed Al Hassani pointed out that such a joint action with international accreditation bodies will encourage the higher education institutions in the State to earn international accreditation for their programs from specialized professional accreditation bodies. Dr. Badr Aboul-Ela also noted that the CAA has started the activation of this joint action through the participation of THE-ICE with the CAA in evaluating the programs offered by two higher education institutions in the State, and the Commission is working on signing agreements with international academic accreditation bodies in other specialized areas.
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