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the European Quality Improvement System
Home / Business Schools / Accrediting bodies / EQUIS
Purpose and role of EQUIS
EQUIS is the leading international system of quality assessment, improvement and accreditation of higher education institutions in management and business administration. EQUIS is run by the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD) and its fundamental objective, linked to the mission of the EFMD, is to raise the standard of management education worldwide.
EQUIS was created in 1997 by a mandate of EFMD's member business schools and with the specific active support of a number of them among which were the top ones in Europe: Bocconi, HEC Paris, Helsinki School of Economics, IESE, IMD, INSEAD, Instituto de Empresa, London Business School, Rotterdam School of Management, etc.
The creation of EQUIS was prompted by the need to develop an accreditation system targeted to those business schools anywhere in the world that were trying to make an impact beyond their domestic frontiers. At the time of its creation, there were no established international accreditation systems in the field of management or business administration.
EQUIS is European in its inspiration and global in its scope. Europeans have designed it and Europeans from a broad range of countries manage it. Its scope, however, is global in that it provides an excellent framework for assessing quality in highly diverse institutional and cultural contexts.
Background of EQUIS
EQUIS is not primarily focused on the MBA or any other specific programme. Its scope covers all programmes offered by an institution from the first degree up to the Ph.D.
Institutions that are accredited by EQUIS must demonstrate not only high general quality in all dimensions of their activities, but also a high degree of internationalisation. With companies recruiting worldwide, with students choosing to get their education outside their home countries, and with schools building alliances across borders and continents, there is a rapidly growing need for them to be able to identify those institutions in other countries that deliver high quality education in international management.
EQUIS looks for a balance between high academic quality and the professional relevance provided by close interaction with the corporate world. A strong interface with the world of business is, therefore, as much a requirement as a strong research potential. EQUIS attaches particular importance to the creation of an effective learning environment that favours the development of students' managerial and entrepreneurial skills, and fosters their sense of global responsibility. It also looks for innovation in all respects, including programme design and pedagogy.
EQUIS is supported by a broad international body of academics and professionals. Deans of reputed academic institutions, HR and Management Development directors of major corporations, heads of national professional associations, consultants, and assessment experts form the pool from which the international peer review teams are drawn.
EQUIS is beneficial to students who are choosing an MBA programme and/or business school
Choosing the right business school, MBA or Masters programme is a decision that may involve a sizable investment in terms of time and money in the expectation to generate significant returns for the candidate in many professional and personal respects. Therefore it is a decision that justifies a great deal of careful selection and research. Accreditation is a key factor to take into consideration since accreditation from the leading international system of quality assessment, EQUIS, provides a reliable indication of quality in business and management education. Graduates who choose to study at an EQUIS accredited school can be assured they are attending an institution with high international standards of quality, a significant level of internationalisation, a balance between high academic (scientific) quality and professional relevance and that the needs of the corporate world are well integrated into programmes, activities and processes. Finally and most importantly students can be assured that they will receive international recognition for their qualification, in which is extremely important in today's global environment.
EQUIS has established its prestige and recognition worldwide. As of July 2007, 110 business schools have been awarded EQUIS with 32 countries represented among the accredited schools: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Korea, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, South Africa, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States of America.
Other things to consider when choosing a business school
Ask yourself this question: Would you consider spending anywhere from 15,000€ to 50,000€ and more on buying a car without testing driving it? The answer I hope is NO!
This is exactly how you should view your MBA selection - it is a hugely important decision to make that takes time and research to get right. As mentioned accreditation is one important factor but you must also consider other factors such as: differences between Business Schools; teaching excellence versus research excellence; practical skills versus academic theory; teamwork versus competition.
Questions to ask business schools and yourself include: Do I choose a full time or part time? Do I meet the minimum entry requirements? How long has the school been running its MBA? What is the Average GMAT Score? Do Members of Faculty have Business Experience? What is the Average Years of Experience of the Students? Which Companies Recruit from the School? Can you talk to Students and Alumni? What have been the most recent changes to the programme?
Although there is a cost involved I would strongly advise that you spend the time visiting potential schools before you make your final choice. Speak to current students, ask to sit in on some classes, get a feel for the atmosphere of the place and ask yourself: IS THIS RIGHT FOR ME BECAUSE THAT IS ALL THAT MATTERS.
Matthew Wood
Communications Director
Rue Gachard 88 - Box 3
B-1050 Brussels (Belgium)
Tel.: +32-(0)2.629.08.10
Fax: +32-(0)2.629.08.11
The following partner Business Schools are accredited by EQUIS
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