The reputation of the IEB as an assessment agency that offers credible assessment as well as examinations that are considered to be of a very high quality not only in content and approach, but also in respect of accuracy in marking and resulting. This reputation results primarily from a range of rigorous quality assurance processes, internal to the IEB.
The advent of qualifications frameworks and the need for recognition of qualifications in other countries, has focused the spotlight on external quality assurance as a key factor in determining the quality for a qualification. So, within South Africa, assessment organisations that offer the National Senior Certificate, are quality assured by Umalusi, the legally mandated government authority to serve this purpose.
International qualifications are unique insofar as they have no legally mandated government authority to conduct quality assurance because they operate across a number of countries. Their quality assurance processes are predominantly internal. Nonetheless they enjoy significant recognition across many countries as quality qualifications.
Given that the intention of the IEB is to offer this quality qualification outside the borders of South Africa, and the rising importance of external quality assurance, the IEB has engaged with Stellenbosch University to take on the role of quality assurance for the ISC qualification.
Stellenbosch University is an internationally recognised institution and is amongst South Africa's leading tertiary institutions based on research output, student pass rates and rated scientists. It is recognised internationally as an academic institution of excellence. In addition, through Stellenbosch International, the university works with over 100 partner institutions across the world and houses the African Doctoral Academy, establishing itself as an institution dedicated to high quality education in Africa.
It is to assure users of the ISC qualification of its integrity that the IEB has established this relationship with Stellenbosch University. The quality assurance processes they will be responsible for include external moderation of examination papers, verification of marking, oversight of the conduct of the examinations including irregularities, certification as well as review of proposed changes in the curriculum and assessment of the qualification.
The model adopted by the IEB and Stellenbosch University is not new and reflects similar arrangements with other international qualifications.
Please see a statement from Stellenbosch University:
Please see the press release (9 July 2021) from Stellenbosch University about the IEB ISC: Press release