ACCREDITATION OF HIGHER EDUCATION IN KAZAKHSTAN: CURRENT TRENDS AND POLICIES

S. Kerimkulova

Nazarbayev University (KAZAKHSTAN)
Accreditation is quickly becoming one of the most widely spread methods for external quality assurance worldwide. Kazakhstan is not an exception. In 2007 the State Law “On Education” was amended with the aim of introducing the institute of accreditation aimed at meeting the demands of integration of Kazakhstan into the European Higher Education Area. Since that time a number of steps were taken by the Ministry of Education and Science of the country as well as by different Kazakhstani universities towards achieving national and international accreditation.

The proposed paper addresses these steps and examines current trends and policies in accreditation of higher education in Kazakhstan. A specific focus is made on the policies connected with the establishment of a national institute of accreditation and achievements in international accreditation gained by a number of nationally topped ranked universities of various categories. The paper attempts to explore such issues as: what promotes the development of a national system of accreditation, what challenges does international accreditation cause for the universities, how higher education in the country is being changed under the pressure of accreditation.