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Accreditation: Taking MUIC to the Next Level

1000-Accreditation- Taking MUIC to the Next Level
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Accreditation: Taking MUIC to the Next Level

In March 2022, the ASEAN University Network-Quality Assurance (AUN-QA) officially accredited two more academic programs of Mahidol University International College (MUIC), namely, Computer Science and Communication Design programs.

Two months earlier, MUIC’s Chemistry Program achieved recognition from the American Chemical Society (ACS).

Accreditation (or “recognition,” the technical term used by the ACS) is a stamp of quality assurance, guaranteeing that the quality of education in MUIC is at par with its global peers. Accreditation also provides an opportunity for accredited universities to engage in dialogue and collaborate with each other as they pursue further improvements.

Asst. Prof. Dr. Boonyanit Mathayomchan,

Program Director, Computer Science Program, Science Division said that the AUN-QA accreditation helps the program to “focus on our process to achieve better quality.” He amplified this by saying that “getting AUN-QA accreditation is not about reaching the finish line, rather, it is about having a good process that will assist us in improving our program continuously.”

Asked what are the concrete ways that this accreditation will benefit the education of MUIC Computer Science students, Dr. Boonyanit explained that computer science is a “fast-changing field. The technologies and best practices today may be replaced by better things in the near future. It is very important that we keep our eyes and mind open for better things. It is important that we assess ourselves and listen to the stakeholders regularly. This will allow us to tailor the program and thus produce graduates that will excel in their respective careers in the future.”

QUOTE “If disruptive technologies and the global economic uncertainty are the ‘enemies’ of students in 2022, allow me to quote Sun Tzu: ‘If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.’”


For Dr. Dynaya Bhutipunthu, Faculty Member, Communication Design Program, Fine and Applied Arts Division, her program’s milestone is very significant because it is the “first and only program of its kind in Thailand and ASEAN to be accredited by AUN-QA.”

Her colleague, Ajarn Ploy Nikadanont, concurred. “It helps us in ensuring the quality of our teaching and learning by allowing us to examine our curriculum in order to identify strengths and weaknesses, as well as the main points and requirements of our students and stakeholders that enable us to solve problems efficiently.”


QUOTE (Aj. Dynaya) “The AUN-QA accreditation is a confirmation that we have created a high quality, sustainable Communication Design Program that best serves the needs of our students, stakeholders and communication design field in Thailand and ultimately in the world.”


Meanwhile, Asst. Prof. Dr. Manchuta Dangkulwanich, a Faculty Member of the Chemistry Program in the Science Division, explained that “the American Chemical Society (ACS) program for Recognition of Global Programs in Chemical Sciences promotes excellence in undergraduate chemistry education.”

She emphasized that “the Chemistry Program at MUIC is the first in the Asia-Pacific and the third outside of the United States to be recognized by ACS. Gaining the recognition shows that our chemistry curriculum is world-class, broad-based, rigorous and aligns with the standards of ACS-approved four-year bachelor’s degree programs in the United States. These guidelines cover various aspects of chemistry education, crucial for training students to become effective scientific professionals, including curriculum, faculty and instrumentation.” 

 

In concrete terms, the ACS recognition criteria played an influential role in the major revision in the Chemistry Program’s curriculum. “We refocused on core chemistry and natural science subjects and introduced a compulsory two-credit polymer course. Applied chemistry specialties are now offered through our partners (Flinders University for a double degree track and Siriraj Hospital for a BSc+MSc track).  This is one example of many tangible benefits to our students enrolling from 2020 onwards.

Another tangible result of the recognition is that “our students can have access to modern instruments both at MUIC and MU-FRF (Mahidol University Frontier Research Facility) as part of their coursework,” she said.

Dr. Manchuta looks forward to the ACS recognition’s impact on the quality of graduates of the Chemistry Program. “Graduates from ACS-approved programs in the US are better prepared for technical employment, and so should graduates from ACS-recognized programs outside of the US.

QUOTE “We do our best to provide world-class chemistry education to prepare our students for the changing world and gaining the ACS recognition validates that.”
Accreditation of MUIC’s academic programs guarantees that it indeed offers a truly world-class higher education, ensuring its students of a strong head start in their future career.


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