Welcome to the Distance Education and Training Council is an independent Council. For over several years we have been responsible for setting standards in North America and Europe within the independent further and higher education sector and our accreditation is held by hundreds of institutions in UK and Overseas. We provide the leading mark of educational quality for the sector, which is used by students, parents, agencies and beyond as a guarantee of standards.

We are committed to both encouraging the highest standards of education offered by QAA guidelines for colleges and institutions providing prospective students with an invaluable guide to quality in an often complex sector. Our charitable status informs our efforts not merely to pass judgement on institutions, but also to nurture their attempts to raise standards and the quality of education for all.

At a time of rapid change, we aim to be at the heart of the debate about quality, standards and enhancement. Both in the UK and internationally, we lead or participate in discussions and consultations with a wide range of interested parties, including institutions, funding councils and students' union representatives. We also advise the government on decisions about institutions newly applying for the power to award degrees and bear the title 'university'.

Our strategy states our aims for 2016-2017. They are to:

  • meet students' needs and be valued by them
  • safeguard standards in an increasingly diverse UK and international context
  • drive improvements in UK higher education
  • improve public understanding of higher education standards and quality.

DETC has been formed to bring this independent information to the student population through its accreditation service with well defined and objective benchmarking. Accreditation through DETC will help the student and parent make a more informed choice and will also help a college/university demonstrate to the marketplace that they are a high quality institution. Following widespread and increasing concern over the behavior of some international independent and private colleges, the UK Government identified the need for a more rigorous system for accrediting education institutions involved in recruiting overseas students. Accordingly, a proposal for the mandatory accreditation of education providers, wishing to bring overseas students into the UK, was included in the Government's Command Paper "A Points Based System: Making Migration Work for Britain".

Given our experience, we are well aware of:

  • The existence of colleges, which appeared to focus largely on bringing young people into the UK as potential students, but whose main aim was to become an illegal economic immigrant,
  • Colleges which, although genuine educational institutions, provided their students with a poor experience, sometimes placing them on inappropriate programmes,
  • Quite reputable colleges, and indeed some universities, which were not well prepared to cater for all of the needs of international students.

DETC, therefore fully recognises the pressing need for a robust and transparent approach to ensuring that colleges, to the best of their ability, only recruit genuine and appropriately qualified students and that they provide the best possible student experience in terms of the students achieving their maximum academic potential whilst having their social and pastoral needs fully addressed.

Ongoing development with the accredited colleges will incorporate such topics as training and monitoring the work of agents, high-quality and ethical recruitment methods, development of admission systems and assistance in the development of codes of practice and ethics policies.

DETC has identified the following Areas of Operation, which will each be assessed and given a grade of Commendable, Satisfactory or Unsatisfactory. These grades will not only be taken into account in deciding whether or not to award accreditation to a college, but will also be helpful in enabling students to make informed choices on where they might study.

Areas of Operation:

  • A. Premises and Health and Safety
  • B. Management and Staff Resources
  • C. Learning and Teaching; Course Delivery
  • D. Quality Assurance and Enhancement
  • E. Student Welfare
  • F. Qualifications and Awards
  • G. Marketing and Student Recruitment
  • H. Relationship with Government Offices and Reporting Mechanisms..

Accredited Colleges are entitled to use the DETC logo and any promotional materials produced by DETC as long as they retain their accreditation.

We are committed to both encouraging the highest standards of education offered by QAA guidelines for colleges and institutions providing prospective students with an invaluable guide to quality in an often complex sector. Our charitable status informs our efforts not merely to pass judgement on institutions, but also to nurture their attempts to raise standards and the quality of education for all.

 

We provide the leading mark of educational quality for the sector, which is used by students, parents, agencies and beyond as a guarantee of standards.