Criticism levelled at Mcast by the Opposition over news that it will offer Masters Level courses was “unfounded and uncalled for”, Education Minister Evarist Bartolo said today.

Addressing a press conference at the Mcast campus in Paloa, Mr Bartolo said the college had already been allowed to accredit its own courses up to level 6 (first degree) back in 2012. The law allowing this has recently been amended and Mcast has since been allowed to offer Masters level courses.

The amendment  was criticised by Opposition MP George Pullicino in Parliament  last night when he questioned the quality assurance system in place.

Mr Bartolo pointed to a recent, and so far unpublished, audit by the National Commission for Higher Education, which he said, had praised Mcast’s self accreditation system. 

In a reaction, the PN again asked why Mcast was accrediting itself instead of seeking independent accreditation. It asked where the self-accreditation had originated from and whether the Commission for Higher Education had made any recommendations about this decision.

It asked if the minister had verified whether Mcast had the structures and the academic profile for self-accreditation.

These, the PN said, were legitimate questions aimed at ensuring that proper standards were observed. These were not attacks of Mcast, which Nationalist governments had set up, twice. 

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