PR - The Samoa Qualifications Authority held its second awareness workshop on the Foreign Qualifications Recognition Service (F.Q.R.S.) at the Development Bank of Samoa conference room yesterday.
The workshop follows a review of the F.Q.R.S. service in view of issues raised in the first awareness workshop in 2016.
It seeks to raise awareness on the changes made to the Guidelines and the In-house Manual for the operation of the F.Q.R.S. It also brings to the attention of the stakeholder the importance of validating qualifications of people seeking employment or further studies.
The review of the F.Q.R.S. process saw two positive changes; the reduction of service fee and the reduction of lead time for the service. It is anticipated that the reduction of fees and lead time will draw people to maximise the use of the service.
The development of the F.Q.R.S. is a mandatory function of S.Q.A. in accordance to its 2010 legislation. It assesses the foreign qualifications whether they are authentic and recognised in the country of award. It also determines the comparable level of such qualifications to the Samoa Qualifications Framework (S.Q.F.) if required.
Having a foreign qualification assessed and recognised assures employers and other stakeholders that it is authentic and quality assured. It protects employers and providers from people armed with fraudulent credentials from many diploma mills operating through electronic means around the world.
Given the emphasis on regional and global mobility of workers and learners across borders this service is timely and essential.
It has been recommended in the review of the F.Q.R.S. that S.Q.A. works together with the Samoa Immigration Department, Ministry of Commerce Industry and Labour (M.C.I.L.), P.S.E.T. providers, Public Service Commission (P.S.C.) and other stakeholders to establish a framework for collaboration in the granting of study visas and work permits.
Moreover, the service will be useful to all stakeholders and the general community to ensure that fraudulent and false qualifications in Samoa is prevented.