The National Commission for Further and Higher Education (NCFHE) has recently issued a licence to the Sadeen Education Investment Ltd to start operating as a Higher Education Institution under the name of ‘American Institute of Malta’, the commission said in a stateent today. The NCFHE has also been informed by the applicant that the intention remains to further pursue a fully-fledged University licence with the name ‘American University of Malta (AUM)’. The Higher Education Institution licence is a necessary first step towards establishing a University.
A Higher Education Institution is defined by Subsidiary Legislation 327.433 (Further and Higher Education (Licensing, Accreditation and Quality Assurance) Regulations) as an entity with a distinct legal personality, which has obtained a license by the NCFHE to provide higher education programmes. Higher education programmes include all non-compulsory, formal, non-formal and informal learning or research, which serves to obtain qualifications at Level 5 or higher within the Malta Qualifications Framework, or a foreign qualification at a comparable level.
For a Higher Education Institution to operate, it needs to have at least 1 accredited course or programme of studies. In this case, the NCFHE has successfully completed the accreditation process of 3 courses at MQF Level 6. Moreover, due diligence has been carried out on the Head of the Institution and its tutors for the approved study programme.
The Higher Education Institution licence issued is a temporary licence of one year which the American Institute of Malta can use to start its operations from premises which are fit for educational purpose. The venue, which is still to be confirmed by the applicant, should be in line with MEPA regulations in order to be accepted by NCFHE and before any tuition can start taking place. The issuance of this license is one of the steps for the applicant to possibly meet the eligibility criteria required for a University status. In parallel,the NCFHE is continuing the rigorous evaluation process of the application submitted by Sadeen Education Investment Ltd for University status.
The NCFHE re-affirmsthat the accreditation process and procedures followed in relation to this applicant were completely separate from and independent of the selection of the site or premises for the University.