The 2013 Accreditation Act on Higher Education Institutions replaced the original Accreditation Act from 2007 and marked a transition from programme to institutional accreditation. It also laid down a process for prequalification of applications to establish new programmes and provisions of programmes.
Among other things, regarding the role and functions of the Danish Accreditation Institution, the Accreditation Act states:
“Section 2. The Danish Accreditation Institution is an academically independent authority within the state administration that performs tasks connected with the accreditation of those education institutions and programmes covered by Section 1.”
“Section 2, subsection 2. The Danish Accreditation Institution shall prepare accreditation reports for the use of the Accreditation Council when making decisions regarding the accreditation of education institutions and programmes. Accreditation shall be performed in accordance with centrally-established criteria.”
Among other things, regarding the role and functions of the Accreditation Council, the Accreditation Act states:
“Section 3. The Accreditation Council is an academically independent council. The Accreditation Council shall establish rules of procedure.”
“Section 3, subsection 2. The Accreditation Council shall make decisions regarding the accreditation of higher education institutions and their programmes, cf. Section 1, on the basis of accreditation reports prepared by the Danish Accreditation Institution, but cf. subsection 3.”
“Section 3, subsection 3. The Accreditation Council shall be entitled, on academic grounds or to determine the competitiveness of the Danish Accreditation Institution, to use an operator other than the Danish Accreditation Institution to prepare accreditation reports. The operator chosen shall be a member of the European Quality Assurance Register.”
Current Accreditation Act
The Accreditation Act from 2013 still applies with two amendments. In 2015, mergers of study programmes were exempted from the rules for prequalification of new programmes. On 30 November 2017, the Danish Parliament (the Folketing) passed the current Accreditation Act that came into force on 1 January 2018. The Act was passed unanimously and includes a number of changes concerning institutional accreditation:
- The validity period for a conditional positive institutional accreditation
- The process for establishment of new programmes and provisions of programmes when institutional accreditation is ongoing
- The regulations for the accreditation status of institutions in connection with mergers of programmes
- The deadline for when an institution must have completed institutional accreditation
Furthermore, the maximum appointment period for students in the Accreditation Council was extended, and the Danish Accreditation Institution were allowed to carry out assessment tasks as earnings-related activities.
Read the current Accreditation Act (in Danish): LBK nr 1667 af 12/08/2021
Current Executive Order
The current Executive Order on accreditation of higher education institutions and approval of higher education study programmes is from 12 August 2019. It establishes three new criteria that apply to higher education instituions that are to undergo a second round of institutional accreditation six years after they first obtained a positive institutional accreditation.
Read the current Executive Order (in Danish): BEK nr 1558 af 02/07/2021
Accreditation of higher education institutions and approval of new study programmes under the Danish Ministry of Culture follow a different Executive Order (in Danish): BEK nr 339 af 06/04/2016