CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision

Membership Type: Observer
Email: office@conies.org
Year in which Organisation/Agency commenced operations: 2012
Countries/regions/states of operation: Worldwide

Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

Title: Dr.
First Name: Gerhard
Surname: Berchtold
Phone: +436643454007
Email Id: office@conies.org

Nominated Contact Person (if different from CEO)

Title: Mr., PhD (C)
First Name: Mustafa
Surname: Kayyali
Email Id: internationalrelations@conies.org

Organisation Details

CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision
Address: Adamgasse 30 / 63, 6020
Innsbruck, Austria
Austria
Website: https://www.conies.org/

Additional Contacts

Criteria Requirements for Full Member

1 Criterion: Nature of the operations of the agency:
Measure: The agency is responsible for reviews at institutional or programme level of post-secondary
education institutions or post-secondary quality assurance agencies
Description: CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision was founded during the international conference of universities from Latin America, Europe, and Asia in Managua, Nicaragua, in March 2012 as the Confederación Internacional de Educación Superior, with its English acronym ICHE International Confederation of Higher Education.
CONIES as a membership organization has since developed and internationalized, establishing an Austrian branch of CONIES as a registered Non-Profit-Organisation in 2015.
CONIES is also registered in Delaware, USA, as the Council on International Higher Education Supervision with Fill Number: 4154700.
CONIES is providing the following QA services:
Auditor Certification
Qualitäts-Management-Beauftragte/r - Quality Management Appointee DIN EN ISO 9001
Interne/r Qualitäts-Auditor/in - Internal Quality Auditor DIN EN ISO 19011
Qualitäts-Manager/in - Quality Manager DIN EN ISO 9004
Externe/r Qualitäts-Auditor/in - External Quality Auditor DIN EN ISO 19011
EFQM-Assessor/in - EFQM Assessor DIN SPEC 77224
Innovations-Manager/in - Innovation Manager ISO 15504
The personal certifications are awarded with AFQ Akademie Futurum Qualitas Berlin
Qualitätsmanagementbeauftragte/r (QMB) Dekra-Personenzertifikat
Interne/r Qualitätsauditor/in Dekra-Personenzertifikat
Qualitätsmanager/in Dekra-Personenzertifikat
Externe/r Qualitätsauditor/in Dekra-Personenzertifikat
EFQM-Assessor/in VQB-Personenzertifikat
Innovations-Manager/in AfQ-Personenzertifikat
QMS Certification ISO 9001
Quality Management System
ISO 9000 - Quality management
The ISO 9000 family addresses various aspects of quality management and contains some of ISO’s best-known standards. The standards provide guidance and tools for companies and organizations who want to ensure that their products and services consistently meet customers’ requirements and that quality is consistently improved.

Standards in the ISO 9000 family include:
ISO 9001:2015 - sets out the requirements of a quality management system
ISO 9000:2015 - covers the basic concepts and language
ISO 9004:2009 - focuses on how to make a quality management system more efficient and effective
ISO 19011:2011 - sets out guidance on internal and external audits of quality management systems.
QMS Certification ISO 21001
Quality Management System in Higher Education
ISO 21001 First Edition 2018-05 Educational organizations — Management systems for educational organizations — Requirements with guidance for use, provides a common management tool for organizations providing educational products and services capable of meeting learners' and other beneficiaries' requirements.
There is a critical and continuous need for educational organizations to evaluate the degree to which they meet the requirements of learners and other beneficiaries, as well as other relevant interested parties, and to improve their ability to continue to do so.
ISO 21001 is a stand-alone management system standard, aligned with ISO 9001. It focuses on the management systems of educational organizations as well as the impact of these on learners and other relevant interested parties.

The following standard was recalled:
ISO 29990:2010, Learning services for non-formal education and training – Basic requirements for service providers, will also enhance transparency and allow comparison on a worldwide basis of learning services, offering a single alternative backed by international consensus to the huge variety of national service and management standards which now exists in the field of non-formal learning.

ISO 29990:2010 is the first standard developed by ISO technical committee ISO/TC 232, Learning services for non-formal education and training. Thomas Rau, Chair of the committee explains. “The purpose of TC 232 is to create a suitable framework for preparing standards in the field of non-formal learning services. Core elements are ensuring the quality and effectiveness of the education or training and improvement of knowledge transfer, whilst also enhancing the transparency and comparability of the range of learning services provided. ISO 29990 will help to learn service providers improve their ability to consistently provide quality services, improve organizational effectiveness, and reduce overall business costs.”

Programme Accreditation
of transnational, inter-institutional, distance, or online postgraduate education programmes
Notice: CONIES Accreditation does not cover undergraduate or first-cycle programmes subject to national recognition authorities and qualification frameworks. CONIES Accreditation applies to the accreditation of distance and online education, trans-national, and inter-university collaborative provision schemes. CONIES Accreditation complements and does not substitute national recognition or accreditation. It applies to postgraduate distance education or online programmes not falling into the scope of national recognition procedures and responsibilities regarding collaborative trans-national provision. It applies to the accreditation of doctoral degree programmes of universities from countries lacking accreditation schemes for doctorates or programmes of the third cycle.

Programme Validation
Validation is the evaluation of a programme provided by a Business School College or Research Institute without degree awarding authority. CONIES Board of Accreditation validates a programme against CONIES and international standards of degree programmes at the respective levels of postgraduate higher education.
Business Schools, Colleges, and Research Institutes qualify for programme validation. Programmes in a variety of specialisations are subject to validation for the recommendation of the award of postgraduate degrees by awarding institutions.
An essential requirement for programme validation is compliance with legal regulations in the countries where the validated programmes are provided. In the UK trans-national programme validation requires RSEO by QAA for the collaborative provision. Various countries and US states regulate restriction, registration, approval, audits, or accreditation of foreign or out-of-state university programmes provided in their country or state. All CONIES validated programmes must be legally provided in the country or countries of provision. CONIES applies rigorous standards in the audit and validation of providers and programmes in line with CONIES regulations and standards.
CONIES member universities and awarding institutions can accept the CONIES Validation for the award of the respective degrees invalidated provision.
2 Criterion: Mission statement and objectives:
Measure: The agency has formulated a mission statement and objectives which are consistent with the nature of the agency
Description: MISSION
CONIES; a voluntary, non-governmental, membership association dedicated to quality assurance certification and programme validation through accreditation via peer evaluation.
VISION
CONIES serves institutions of higher education striving to achieve quality management system certification and programme accreditation through voluntary assessment and adherence to CONIES accreditation standards.
OBJECTIVE
CONIES acts as a clearinghouse to assess and certify the comparability of the quality of TCO-programme provision for mutual recognition and credit transfer among member institutions of higher education.
What We Do
CONIES has emerged as the COUNCIL ON INTERNATIONAL HIGHER EDUCATION SUPERVISION offering two types of quality assurance certifications and accreditations to member universities: Quality Management
System certification and Programme Accreditation.
CORE VALUES
CONIES Board of Accreditation is guided by these Core Values:
• Voluntary membership
• Auto-evaluation and peer-review
• Transparency about the accreditation processes and the status of each accredited institution and programme
3 Criterion: Agency staff, Numbers, Profile, Roles:
Measure: The profile of the staff is consistent with the Mission Statement
Description: The acting Members of the Board execute their office independently from their respective university positions and refrain from voting once the institution which they represent as Founding members should be subject to an accreditation decision.
Accreditation decisions are made exclusively based on the outcome of a programme audit evaluated by peer auditors.
CONIES Board of Accreditation is recognized by the Founding member universities of CONIES Confederación Internacional de Educación Súperior and is not endorsed or recognized by any government agency or public accreditation body. The Board is acting in full independence from the founding member universities and the autonomy is reflected in the development of its assessment functions.
A panel of peer auditors will be appointed for a programme evaluation, including one expert in the discipline, one expert in transnational provision (if applicable), one expert in collaborative provision (if applicable), one expert in e-learning provision, and one expert in quality management.
Executive Board Members
Prof. Lic. Doris Salamando Diaz
Chairwoman of CONIES International and the Nicaragua branch
Director of UCN International Relations (Founding Member university)
Prof. Dr. Ricardo R. Saavedra Hidalgo, MSc, PhD
Deputy Chairman of CONIES International and the Mexican Branch
Director of Universidad Azteca International Programs (Founding Member university)
Prof. Dr. Dr. Dr. Gerhard Berchtold
Chairman of CONIES Europe and the Austrian branch of CONIES (Founding member of CONIES)
Dean of European Programmes of UCN / Universidad Azteca
HR Prof. Mag. Dr. Friedrich Luhan, MSc, PhD, CMC
Former Director of Leopold Franzens Universität Innsbruck
Board member of CONIES Austria, university professor, expert in higher education legislation
Prof. Mag. Dr. Franz Clemens Pichler
Quality Management Systems lead auditor and expert in online education provision
Board member of CONIES Austria, university professor
Prof. Dr. Poa Chung Seong
Chairman of CONIES Asia and the Malaysian branch of CONIES
Adjunct Board Members
Prof. Mag. Mag. Mag. Dr. Dr. Mario Art, MBA, MPA
Director of FAF Academy in Vienna, Austria,
Expert in postgraduate programmes in Business, Finance, and Management
Prof. Dr. Frank Deubler
Director of AFQ Akademie Futurum Qualitas, Berlin, Germany
Expert in Quality Management Systems and Lead Auditor for QMS certification
Dr. Peter Christian Endler, PhD
Expert in Health Sciences and Education programmes, Graz, Austria
Dr. Eyal Fefer
Expert in ODL e-learning and distance learning systems, London, UK
Prof. Dr. Felipe Fernandez de Rivadulla
Expert in postgraduate programme development and provision, La Coruna, Spain
Father Dr. George Gonzales, PhD
Expert in Counseling and Psychology courses, San Antonio, Texas, U.S.A.
Dr. Sandra Hurlong
Expert in Humanities courses, Delaware, U.S.A.
Dr. Lukas Kopac
Expert in HEI management and transnational provision, Bratislava, Slovak Republic
Dr. David Mills
Expert in TNE transnational programme development, Ghana, Africa
Dr. Daniel Omotosho
Expert in transnational marketing of TNE, and in Social Sciences (Business Administration) disciplines, Warsaw, Poland
Prof. Dr. Nuria Pereira
Expert in Human Rights and International Protocol courses, Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Dr. Innocent Rusagara
Expert in the collaborative provision, Kigali, Rwanda
Dr. Rechad Sayfoo
Expert in qualifications evaluation, former Chairman of Mauritius Qualifications Authority, Mauritius
List of active members is available on the following page:
https://www.conies.org/about_us/board_members
4 Criterion: Profile of reviewers:
Measure: The profile of the reviewers is consistent with the Mission Statement
Description: CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision communicates on a permanent and independent basis with several independent international experts to evaluate educational programs and participate in the accreditation and evaluation processes. The International Board also works permanently to supplement its roster of experts with international experts.
International Board members act as directors of independent evaluation groups on every continent.
Link for international members of reviewers teams:
https://www.conies.org/about_us/conies_international
5 Criterion: Independence:
Measure: The judgements and recommendations of the agency’s reports cannot be changed by third parties
Description: CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision is a completely independent academic scientific body that is not subject to any considerations or interference by any third party, and its decision-making authority is independent and has the legal, scientific and academic authority to grant and withdraw accreditation from higher education institutions. The council was established in March 2012 and is licensed in Austria, and has a license in the US state of Delaware.
CONIES is a membership non-profit association registered in Innsbruck, Austria (ZVR number 793448260).
6 Criterion: Resources:
Measure: The agency has sufficient resources to run its operations in accordance with its mission statement and objectives
Description: CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision is a non-profit scientific academic body. CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision depends for its funding on the fees of the institutional and program accreditation processes of the institutions it approves. In addition, CONIES receives individual membership fees from individuals who apply for its membership.
Link to member list:
https://www.conies.org/members
Board membership fees are as follows:
Institutional Member: FREE
Affiliate Member: Application fee 120 EUR.
The annual Affiliate membership fee is 360 EUR.
Certified / Accredited Member:
The annual membership fee is 600 EUR.
Supporting Members: 2,400 EUR annual membership fee.
Individual Members: 120 EUR annual membership fee.
7 Criterion: External quality assurance criteria and processes:
Measure: The description of the processes and criteria applied should be transparent and publicly available and normally include:
self evaluation, site visit, public report and follow-up measure
Description: External quality assurance at CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision goes through the following steps:
Your submitted application will be reviewed by the CONIES and if considered, you will be contacted to send further details which will also be analyzed regarding the eligibility policies of the Board of Accreditation.
After the evaluation phase, you will be advised about the fees, policies, and regulations. Once you agree, the next phase of evaluation commences.
NEXT:
Your institution will go through self-evaluation and external CONIES audit phases through which the institution's quality will be gauged and checked. After we spend a considerable amount of time reviewing the individual programme, it becomes CONIES accredited.
8 Criterion: Quality assurance:
Measure: The description of the processes and criteria applied should be transparent and publicly available and normally include:
self evaluation, site visit, public report and follow-up measure
Description: The ultimate goal of quality assurance mechanisms is to create a “quality culture” within the organization, which would be based on an internal system of continuous quality that seeks to provide a quality education through a holistic approach every day. Basis.
In addition, CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision has a special unit for quality assurance.
All reports and information related to quality assurance are published on the CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision's website and made available to the public.
CONIES Council on International Higher Education Supervision conducts field visits to universities that have submitted a request for accreditation for their programs, and this is done according to a schedule and program that is announced in advance.
Below is a list of information related to the quality assurance systems used in the Council:
ISO/IEC 17021-1:2015
Conformity assessment — Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management systems as an independent Certification Body in the field of Quality Management of Higher Education according to the ISO standards ISO 21001:2018 (Educational organizations — Management systems for educational organizations — Requirements with guidance for use) and the ISO 29993:2017 (Learning services outside formal education — Service requirements).
ISO 9000 and ISO 21001 - Quality management
The ISO 9000 family addresses various aspects of quality management and contains some of ISO’s best-known standards. The standards provide guidance and tools for companies and organizations who want to ensure that their products and services consistently meet customers’ requirements and that quality is consistently improved.
Standards in the ISO 9000 family include:
ISO 9001:2015 - sets out the requirements of a quality management system
ISO 9000:2015 - covers the basic concepts and language
ISO 9004:2009 - focuses on how to make a quality management system more efficient and effective
ISO 19011:2011 - sets out guidance on internal and external audits of quality management systems.
ISO 21001 First Edition 2018-05 Educational organizations — Management systems for educational organizations — Requirements with guidance for use provide a common management tool for organizations providing educational products and services capable of meeting learners' and other beneficiaries' requirements.
ISO 29990:2010, Learning services for non-formal education and training – Basic requirements for service providers, aim to improve the quality of offerings on the global market that has grown up around non-formal education and training, such as vocational training, life-long learning, and in-company training. (Recalled)
This 2010 international standard was intended to provide reassurance for organizations and individuals buying learning services in the global market. Higher education providers provide learning services in non-formal education and training, with the standard specifying the basic requirements for delivering services. It sets an international benchmark for training and learning services.
ISO 21001 QMS Certification
ISO 21001 First Edition 2018-05 Educational organizations — Management systems for educational organizations — Requirements with guidance for use provide a common management tool for organizations providing educational products and services capable of meeting learners' and other beneficiaries' requirements.
There is a critical and continuous need for educational organizations to evaluate the degree to which they meet the requirements of learners and other beneficiaries, as well as other relevant interested parties, and to improve their ability to continue to do so.

ISO 21001:2018-05 replaces the former
ISO 29990:2010, Learning services for non-formal education and training – Basic requirements for service providers, will also enhance transparency and allow comparison on a worldwide basis of learning services, offering a single alternative backed by international consensus to the huge variety of national service and management standards which now exists in the field of non-formal learning.
Knowledge is becoming a key factor in successful corporate management all over the world and education is increasingly being regarded as a business-oriented service.
The growing economic importance of learning in the global knowledge society has created new economic opportunities such as activities created by the provision of for-profit learning services. Quality assurance, therefore, becomes a crucial issue.
The objective of ISO 29990:2010 is to provide a generic model for quality professional practice and performance, and a common reference for learning service providers (LSPs) and their clients in the design, development, and delivery of non-formal education, training, and development.
The standard encourages a focus on the learner and the results of the process and emphasizes the full range of options available for delivering learning services.
As it addresses the competency of LSPs., the standard will assist organizations and individuals in selecting LSPs who will meet their requirements and expectations for competency and capability development. In addition, it is envisaged that ISO 29990:2010 can be used to certify LSPs.
It sets an international benchmark for training and learning services so that there is no need for a detailed understanding of the sometimes complex national arrangements for assuring the quality of providers of learning and training services, which in some countries are non-existent or hard to fathom.
In cases where the learning service provider is part of an organization that delivers products (goods and services) in addition to learning services, BS ISO29990 only applies to the unit providing the learning services.
BS ISO 29990 would benefit anyone offering or procuring non-formal education and training such as vocational training, lifelong learning, and in-company training (either outsourced or in-house).
BS ISO 29990 is intended to provide a generic model for quality professional practice and performance, and a common reference for learning service providers (LSPs) and their clients in the design, development, and delivery of non-formal education, training, and development. This International Standard uses the term “learning services” rather than “training” in order to encourage a focus on the learner and the results of the process and to emphasize the full range of options available for delivering learning services.

BS ISO 29990 focuses on the competency of LSPs. It is intended to assist organizations and individuals to select an LSP who will meet the organization's needs and expectations for competency and capability development and can be used to certify LSPs.
BS ISO 29990 shares some similarities with many of the management system standards published by ISO, particularly ISO 9001.

ISO 29993 QMS Certification
ISO 29993:2017 Learning services outside formal education — Service requirements are intended to provide a general frame of reference for quality learning services outside formal education by specifying its various elements and delivery.
The structure of this standard reflects a typical sequence of experiences of learners and sponsors in a prototypical learning service, including advertising, the information provided before acquisition of the service, needs analysis, design, assessment, and evaluation.
However, how the learning service is planned and delivered can vary depending on the context. The learning service provider (LSP) can implement a management system designed to ensure consistent delivery of service and conformity with this standard.
This standard specifies requirements for learning services outside formal education, including all types of life-long learning (e.g. vocational training and in-company training, either outsourced or in-house). These include any learning services provided by a learning service provider (LSP) that are addressed to learners themselves, as well as to sponsors who are acquiring the services on behalf of the learners. The key features of these kinds of services are that the goals of learning are defined and the services are evaluated and they involve interaction with the learner. The learning can be face-to-face, mediated by technology, or a blend of both.
In cases where the learning service provider is part of an organization that delivers products (i.e. goods and services) in addition to learning services, this standard only applies to learning services.
This standard is not aimed at schools, colleges, and universities providing learning services as part of a formal education system, but it can be useful to them as a tool for reflection and self-evaluation.
ISO 9001 QMS Certification
ISO 9001:2015
ISO 9001:2015 sets out the criteria for a quality management system and is the only standard in the family that can be certified (although this is not a requirement). It can be used by any organization, large or small, regardless of its field of activity. In fact, there are over one million companies and organizations in over 170 countries certified to ISO 9001.

This standard is based on several quality management principles including a strong customer focus, the motivation and implication of top management, the process approach, and continual improvement. These principles are explained in more detail in the pdf Quality Management Principles. Using ISO 9001:2015 helps ensure that customers get consistent, good-quality products and services, which in turn brings many business benefits.
ISO 9001 Certification & Accreditation
When your organization is working within the guidelines of the Quality Management System, the audit can be conducted by the accredited CONIES Certification Body.

Criteria Requirements for Institutional Member

Institutional Member Criteria:
Measure: Institutional Members are institutions of higher education in the region that are in good standing with the relevant quality assurance agency if one exists.
Proof of recognition as a Higher Education Institution: Applicable Only For Institutional Members
Proof of the organisation’s good standing with the local QA agency: Applicable Only For Institutional Members

Criteria Requirements for Associate Member

Associate Member Criteria:
Measure:Associate Members are organisations with a major interest and active involvement in evaluation, accreditation and quality assurance in higher education, but without the responsibility for assuring the quality of institutions, education programs, or external quality assurance agencies
Applicable Only For Associate Members

Criteria Requirements for Intermediate Member

1 Criterion: Nature of the operations of the agency:
Measure: The agency is responsible for reviews at institutional or programme level of post-secondary education institutions or post-secondary quality assurance agencies
Description: Applicable Only For Intermediate Members
2 Criterion: Mission statement and objectives:
Measure: The agency has formulated a mission statement and objectives which are consistent with the nature of the agency
Applicable Only For Intermediate Members
3 Criterion: :
Proof of the organisation’s good standing with the local QA agency
Applicable Only For Intermediate Members

Criteria Requirements for Observer

Criterion For Observers:
Measure: APQN accepts as Observers organisations outside the Asia-Pacific region, including: external quality assurance agencies; institutions with a major interest in evaluation, accreditation and quality assurance in higher education; other regional networks that have major interests in and strong links with the region
Criteria Requirements for Observer: Applicable Only For Observers

Documentation and Fees

Additional Information: No additional information is required for my application
Upon approval of my application I agree to pay:
  • $500 (Initial Joining Fee: Full Member, Intermediate Member, Associate Member)
  • $300 Member Fee: Full Member, Intermediate Member (if not INQAAHE Member)
I will be applying for support for: Both Initial Joining Fee and Membership Fee

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