[vc_row][vc_column][vc_single_image image=”9945″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Who is the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) ?
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is an independent, non-governmental international organization with a membership of 163 national standards bodies. It brings together experts and professionals from its members to create generic and sustainable management systems to set about a standard that promotes quality and efficient processes while reducing costs. They give world-class specifications and proactive measures for products, services and systems, to ensure quality, safety and efficiency. These standards are instrumental in facilitating the international trade and unifying organizations of different specializations in terms of processes.
Currently, it has about 21, 000 standards specializing from environmental quality management systems to occupational health systems.
Incorporating QMS to the Educational Curricula
Standards are an impetus for sharing knowledge, technology and good practices. Standards can be incorporated to technological universities, business schools and other faculties to get students a head start on this globally acclaimed system process. ISO standards are increasingly recognized in education programs around the world, countries like The United Kingdom, China, Japan, Italy and Japan are incorporating these standards to their businesses for efficiency in their processes.
The ISO standards are a badge of quality and any organization that implements it commits to an assurance of quality and that it values safety and output and cost efficiency. Since ISO standards can be implemented regardless of the size of the organization, businesses from large to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) could implement these standards. Students will not only have an edge once they step into the labor force but they will also navigate in the process easily as standards are generic. This precursory understanding would give them a vantage of the organization and its operation.
Students will get the most advantage in learning standardization in universities, especially because they are also the ones to decide the future of standardization. Standards can benefit students and their understanding can contribute to its development, dissemination and use. The future generation is in-charge of the future standards, it is imperative that as early as university education they are able to recognize and have basic knowledge of the concept and implementation of these standards.
ISO recognizes the fundamental contribution that educational institutions and especially universities can give to standardization in terms of:
- Teaching what can be achieved through standards
- Participating in the developments of standards providing the invaluable contribution of academics work
- Developing academic studies and research work on standardization
There is a technical reason why ISO has to be implemented in universities, there are ways in which ISO implementation universities could be used in advancing standards.
For example, International Standards bring technological, economic and societal benefits. They help to harmonize technical specifications of products and services like requiring safety measures in the supply-chain or providing standsrds in cargo security, making trade industries more efficient which help in breaking down barriers in international trade. Educational institutions are increasingly recognizing these benefits and international standardization, this is why they have slowly introduced these standards in their curricula. We recognize the vital contribution educational institutions bring to raising awareness of standardization and its benefits, and are keen to support their work.
Jin Xuejun, a Professor of a University in Hangzhou, China said that the lack of knowledge of standardization would affect the competence and working ability of an International Trade or a Business student aiming for the global market.
Standards establish a consensus of approved rules and guidelines or characteristics that always aim for the optimal achievement of the result intended in the given context. The students would more likely benefit from it especially now that globalization and state integrations are in our midst. Standardization if a powerful way of communicating in a structured manner and at different levels and they have over the years helped the quality of people’s lives as whole.
We have to remember that standards operate in the vast majority of industries, from occupational health and safety , environmental management systems, energy management systems and many more, this means that regardless of the degree program the student is pursuing, his future job is most likely going to involve an interaction of the ISO standards.
The Philippines and K-12
The Philippines recently implemented the K-12 Educational Cirruculum, with the Philippines being one of the only three countries worldwide with a 10-year pre-university cycle, it was imperative to implement this educational reform. This became the start of gearing towards global competitiveness.
The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) has also mandated programs to be ISO certified, an example would be the Maritime Schools which would have to be ISO certified, the purpose of this is establishing and implementing a quality standards system to ensure that the seafarers are effectively and efficiently educated, trained and assessed for competence in accordance with internationally agreed standards. Another example would be the Universities operating review centers and having the ISO certification as an equivalent criteria in lieu of an accreditation requirement under Sec.1, Rule VII of the IRR of EO No. 566.
Also, imperative to the release of the CHED Memorandum Order No. 46, Series of 2012 entitled, “Policy-Standard to enhance quality assurance (QA) in Philippine Higher Education through an Outcomes-based and Typology-based QA”, the Quality Management committee has the overall responsibility for the establishment, implementation and maintenance of the Quality Management System for ISO certification.
The ISO 9001 ensures that processes within institutions follow a process. A quality management system (QMS) based on the ISO 9001 standard is recognized worldwide as a superb methodology for improving performance, increasing customer satisfaction, maintaining regulatory compliance and as a cost-saving vehicle.
Sec. 1 of AO 161 “Institutionalizing Quality Management Systems in Government”, amended by EO 605, also provides that:
“The State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) are likewise enjoined to establish ISO Quality Management Systems (ISO-QMS) and be certified accordingly. “
Among others, the implementation of ISO standards in SUCs would mean the following:
- Demonstrating its commitment to service quality and customer satisfaction, as well as continuously improving its quality management systems and integrating the realities of a changing world.In pursuit of the provisions from the 1987 constitution, Sec.1 of Article XIV which provides that “The state shall protect and promote the right of all citizens to quality education at all levels.”
- Educating the SUCs with the best Quality Assurance (QA) method, in fulfillment of CMO No. 46, Art. 1, Sec.3, whose end is to entail a critical mass of diverse HEIs offering quality programs that meet national and international standards for disciplines and professions with such widely accepted standard.
- Giving the best value of service to Filipino and foreign students who come to our country in search of quality education.
Related Statutes to the Implementation of ISO in SUCs
EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 605
INSTITUTIONALIZING THE STRUCTURE, MECHANISMS AND STANDARDS TO IMPLEMENT THE GOVERNMENT QUALITY MANAGEMENT PROGRAM, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER NO. 161, S. 2006
“SECTION 1. Institutionalization of Quality Management Systems in Government. All departments and agencies of the Executive branch, including all government-owned and/or controlled corporations (GOCCs) and government financial institutions (GFIs), are hereby directed to adopt the ISO 9001:2000 Quality Management Systems as part of the implementation of a government-wide quality management program. The quality management systems shall be certified for demonstrated conformity with ISO 9001:2000 and the applicable Government Quality Management Systems Standards (GQMSS), with priority to be given to frontline services.
….The State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) are likewise enjoined to establish ISO Quality Management Systems (ISO-QMS) and be certified accordingly. The Local Government Units (LGUs), Judiciary, the Legislature and the Constitutional offices are also encouraged to develop ISO-QMS and pursue certification.”
CHED MEMORANDUM ORDER NO. 61, S.2007
ISO-certification as an eqivalent criteria in lieu of an accreditation requirement under Sec. 1, Rule 7 of the Revised Rules and Regulations of EO 566.
CHED MEMORANDUM ORDER NO. 19
Discusses about the benefits and responsibilities of Autonomous and Deregulated Private Higher Educational Institutions that includes ISO-certification as one of its criteria. It is an extension of CMO. No. 46, Series of 2012 which enhances Quality Assurance (QA) of Higher Educational Institutions (HEIs) in the Philippines.
 ISO (2014) Teaching Standards. Retrieved May 2 from https://www.iso.org/files/live/sites/isoorg/files/archive/pdf/en/teaching_standards_en_-_lr.pdf
 EISCAA (2012) Education about Standards retrieved March 2017 from http://www.eiscaa.com/Pages/view.aspx?PostID=8
 ISO/IEC Guide 2:2004
 Inquirer (2016) Dr. R.V Bacarra. Why the K-12 program will benefit the Filipino youth Retried May 8, 2017 from http://lifestyle.inquirer.net/227819/why-the-k-12-program-will-benefit-the-filipino-youth/
 ISO. (2016, September 16). Benefits of International Standards. Retrieved from ISO: http://www.iso.org/iso/home/standards/benefitsofstandards.htm
 LinkedIn. Top 10 Countries with ISO 9001 Certificate (2010). Retrieved May 8, 2017 from https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/20140525200556-21845271-top-10-countries-for-iso-9001-certificates-2010
 ISO (2014) Teaching Standards. Retrieved May 2 from https://www.iso.org/files/live/sites/isoorg/files/archive/pdf/en/teaching_standards_en_-_lr.pdf[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]