University of the Philippines Los Baños
Thursday, 20 November 2014 00:00

BS Biology Program gets AUN-QA Standard Accreditation

UPLB’s BS Biology program under the Institute of Biological Sciences (IBS) of the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), has finally received its certification as an accredited program under the ASEAN University Network-Quality Assurance (AUN-QA) System on November 5, 2014. The date of effectivity is from Feb. 18, 2014 to Feb. 17, 2018.

According to Dr. Nina M. Cadiz, director of the Institute of Biological Sciences, the AUN-QA certification for UPLB’s BS Biology program is historic. It signifies that the UPLB BS Biology curriculum adheres to international academic standards, and it is at par with biology programs from other leading ASEAN universities within the network. The AUN-QA certification is the first for any degree program under the CAS and for UPLB; the only second accreditation (same batch as the BS Statistics of UP Diliman) for any program under the UP System; and the first AUN-QA accreditation for any BS Biology program in the Philippines.

The certification was given after the BS Biology program went through an intensive assessment process aimed at satisfying a 15-point criteria. These included program structure and content, faculty and staff quality, student and stakeholders’ assessment, and adequate facilities and infrastructure.

The process started on July 2013. On Jan. 16-17, 2014, a team of AUN-QA assessors from Thailand and Malaysia conducted the site visit and assessment at UPLB.

The AUN-QA system enhances and assures the quality standards of higher education institutions in the ASEAN-member countries, namely: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao-PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.

With the advent of the 2015 one ASEAN Community, UP’s internationalization as a national university is considered necessary to promote its aim for global competitiveness. ASEAN integration has posed a challenge in establishing quality degree programs that can attract foreign students and produce highly competitive graduates.

The UPLB BS Biology is a four-year program, which offers students a holistic view of life through the integration of biological sciences such as zoology, botany, and microbiology with physical sciences such as physics and chemistry. Students taking BS Biology may choose to specialize in any of the following eight disciplines: cell and molecular biology, ecology, genetics, microbiology, plant biology, systematics, wildlife biology, and zoology. (TJ Medina)