What is ACTI?
ACTI is an Association of Tertiary Educational Institutions in the Caribbean region. The member institutions are Universities, Colleges, Community Colleges, Teacher Training Colleges, National Colleges, State Colleges, Technical Colleges etc.
The number of ACTI members are:
At the present time, there are over 96 members from 17 countries as follows:
- Full members: 64
- Associate members: 22
- Honorary members: 10
ACTI has eight (8) Universities among its members - University of the West Indies, University of Guyana, University of Technology (Jamaica), University of the Virgin Islands, University of St. Maarten, the Anton von Kom University (Suriname), St. Georges University and the University of Belize.
Most of its members are English-speaking but it has been recommended that ACTI extend its membership to the CARIFORUM countries, and also to members of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS).
ACTI was inaugurated on November 8, 1990, in Kingston, Jamaica.
Over the past twenty years in the English speaking Caribbean, several Tertiary Level Institutions (TLI´s) were being established to meet national needs, not only for those persons going on to University studies, but also for persons in middle management, technicians, workers in health professions, persons in the Performing and Creative Arts, and so on. In several countries, due to their small size and to effect economies of scale, several individual institutions, eg. The Technical college, Teachers College, Nursing School, Sixth Forms of schools were amalgamated to form the national Tertiary level Institution.
UWI, largely due to the initiative of and under the leadership of Sir Alister MacIntyre, then Vice Chancellor, recognised that there was a vital need to assist in the strengthening of these TLI's and to effect better articulation between their programmed offerings and those of UWI.
It was in that context that ACTI was established.
The specific objective of ACTI:
The specific objectives, as stated in the constitution of ACTI are:
- To facilitate cooperation and collaboration between the institutions in a wide range of academic, administrative and other areas.
- To facilitate more effective utilization of scarce resources in seeking to enhance access, mobility and quality in tertiary education.
- To facilitate articulation among the institutions.
- To facilitate the development/delivery of particular programmes and services.
- To assist in identifying and meeting the ongoing tertiary education needs of the region and individual territories. To provide a professional forum for discussion and problem solving.
What are the criteria for membership?
There are three categories of membership - full, associate and honorary.
Full membership is open to tertiary institutions in the Caribbean region.
Associate membership is open to organizations and other institutions, which have responsibilities, related to tertiary education territorially, regionally and extra-regionally.
Honorary membership is conferred on an organization, institution or individual, which the Association considers to have given outstanding services to education in the region, particularly at the tertiary level.
Definition of Tertiary:
In the context of ACTI, Tertiary is synonymous with post secondary. A Tertiary institution is defined as an institution designed to provide post-secondary education and/or training leading to a certificate, diploma or degree.
To be accepted at a Tertiary institution a student must have completed a secondary education with a minimum of four or five subjects at the CXC General Proficiency or equivalent, with English language being compulsory.
In this context, Tertiary includes what is referred to in some countries as Higher, but in some countries, Higher refers to University studies only and does not include institutions such as Community Colleges, Technical Colleges and Teacher Training Colleges, which are members of ACTI.
In order to avoid discrepancies, the definitions of Tertiary and Higher must be clarified when comparisons are being made.
The overall aim of ACTI:
The overall aim of ACTI is to improve the quality, quantity and organisation of tertiary education in the region through co-operation and collaboration between member institutions.
Management Structure of ACTI:
The Executive Committee of ACTI comprises a President, two (2) Vice-Presidents and a Treasurer.
An Executive officer performs the functions of secretary and office manager.
In addition, there is a Council, comprising the Executive, one representative from each member territory, two (2) representatives from the University of the West Indies, one (1) representative from the University of Technology, Jamaica, and one (1) representative from the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts, Jamaica.
The Executive Committee and the Council act for the General Assembly between annual meetings.
ACTI Secretariat is located:
The ACTI Secretariat is located at the UWI Cave Hill campus in offices adjacent to the UWI Tertiary Level Institutions Unit (TLIU).
The major focus of ACTI:
The current major focus of ACTI is working with the CARICOM Secretariat to establish and make operational a Regional Mechanism for Accreditation, Articulation Equivalency and Credentialing of programmes at the tertiary level as mandated by the Heads of Government of CARICOM. As this is considered to be one of the important tools to facilitate the free movement of people, skills and services including trade in the CARICOM region.