The Seoul Accord, the multi-lateral agreement that allows ACS accreditation to be recognised globally, has now been extended to include Master’s programs designed for initial professional practice.

Meeting last month in Girdwood, Alaska, signatories of the Seoul Accord agreed to also include conversion Master’s programs under the Accord.

The recommendation was made by ACS Principal Adviser Professional Standards, Emeritus Professor Graham Low, alongside the British Computer Society’s Professor Paul Hanna.

Low stressed the importance of having mutual recognition of accredited programs extended to Master’s programs under the Accord.

“While the Bachelor’s programs have previously been included under the Seoul Accord, there was a major gap with the omission of Master’s programs,” Low said.

“With this change, Master’s programs for initial professional practice are now covered by the Seoul Accord and it means that graduates from these programs will have their degrees recognised by the other countries who are a member of the Accord.”

Previously, signatories of the Accord gave mutual recognition to their respective accreditation schemes for only undergraduate programs.

The changes apply immediately to all currently accredited Master’s programs (accredited at the Professional level) and offered by institutions at Australian locations.

The Seoul Accord was established in 2008 as a multi-lateral cross recognition agreement, between eight global ICT professional associations, with the aim to improve computing education globally. It is so-called because of the city the agreement was initially signed in.

It works under principles of mutual respect of signatories, autonomy, transparency, and developing best practices for IT-related professions.

The ACS has been a signatory of the Seoul Accord since its formation in 2008 and follows the Seoul Accord Graduate Attributes for ACS Professional Accreditation Requirements.

The change is expected to be welcomed by Australian institutions, as increased global recognition may be able to increase the take-up of courses internationally.

“This should be a major advantage to Australian universities in being able to market their programs internationally,” said Low.