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First in Germany: IACBE confirms international quality standard

As the first university ever in Germany, Cologne Business School has now been accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE) and awarded an important seal of quality for its work in the last years. The IACBE is internationally renowned and has accredited 1,400 business programs worldwide.

IACBE confirms excellence at CBS

The accreditation process of the IACBE includes comprehensive and in-depth analyses – it is not seldom that accreditation attempts fail or are subject to conditions. Yet CBS, on the other hand, received its first international accreditation for the next seven years, and without additional requirements. CBS was awarded outstanding achievements in four important categories. The “Board of Commissioners” of the IACBE was impressed by the high standard of technological equipment. In particular, the use of smartboards along with the pilot project – to seamlessly connect these with tablets – was positively mentioned.

In addition, the work of the CBS faculty was praised: a strong interaction with the business world through research, consultation, presentations and publications. Moreover, the extensive network of experts and alumni are highlighted along with the extent to which this group carries out programs relevant to CBS and thus providing opportunities for students to gain experience. The “Board of Commissioners” was able to get to know this network and was impressed.

Last but not least, the focus and commitment to international education were pointed out, which, thanks to the mandatory semester abroad, are guaranteed.

CBS implements consistency in student-centred learning

The accreditation by the IACBE – in particular the accredited achievements – also confirms a consistent implementation of the new European paradigm (with the ESG 2015 – Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance 2015) by CBS. Higher education should respond to the growing demand for specific skills and competencies in a new way. With “student-centred learning”, students are more in the centre of learning and teaching – they have a much more active role to play. This also corresponds with the guidelines of the IACBE.

As confirmed by the IACBE, CBS promotes this approach through modern technical equipment, authentic internationalism and close integration with business experts and alumni. The teaching methods are also adapted to this approach: Integrative Case Studies, Real-Life Business Projects and Business Simulation Games focus on students, putting their skills and abilities in the foreground.

Just how well CBS students apply their knowledge outside the university can be seen by their winning the IACBE Case Competition.

Excellent values

All of the IACBE Commission’s positive findings are ultimately reflected in the values and philosophy at CBS. The “mission-based” approach of the IACBE and the question of how the university’s “mission” is ultimately directed at students was observed and analysed by the IACBE step for step in a “vertical” analysis. This includes a review of how the learning objectives of the “mission” of the university correspond. The successful IACBE accreditation is the result of many years of improvement processes at CBS while also a commitment to continue along this path, as the IACBE accreditation also includes constant quality checks.

Founded in 1997, the IACBE, when awarding accreditations, focuses on a value-based, results-oriented and student-centred teaching, rather than on adherence to rigid mission statements. This focus is based on the demands of presidents, CEOs and other executives – and is therefore very practice-oriented.

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