ISAL is a non integrated Private Polytechnic establishment of Higher Studies.
Its genesis dates back to 1971, a period when other institutions of Teaching and Professional Studies were created in Lisbon and which developed synergies that were determinant for the organization and functioning of ISAL in Madeira. In 1984, the Regional Secretary of Education of the Autonomous Region of Madeira granted the needed permission for this Institute to function. This way, the very first private institution of pos-secondary studies was born in the Region.
The creation and functioning of ISAL were authorized by the adequate Ministry that in 1989 recognised the ISAL, being CENIL – Centro de Línguas, LDA, its Title Entity (Decree n.º 801/89), approved its study plans for the private and higher teaching and proceeded to recognising the diplomas issued by the courses learnt at ISAL
The ISAL also develops, together with the higher studies of tourism and management, several complementary or connected activities to that level of studies, namely in the areas that allow the perfecting and counselling in management and tourism.
We value our performance as a positive one once it has allowed to surpass some national and regional gaps, as officially stated by the Regional Secretary of Education and the Regional Secretary of Tourism and Culture, namely in what concerns the need of these degrees in Madeira Autonomous Region.
Among the several goals of ISAL we name:
- Forming managers and high level technicians, scientifically and technically prepared to work in the enterprise and other organisations;
- Promoting the constant perfecting of managers and technicians who are already working in enterprises and other organisations, through the conception and execution of short and long length courses and of formation programmes within the enterprise and other organisations, prepared in accordance with their real and specific needs;
- Making fundamental research to suit the domains of sciences and management techniques and tourism also;
- Revealing the knowledge and scientific innovations in the area of management.
As to make possible the goals above stated, the ISAL adopted the following guide lines:
- The constant perfecting of its activity in the areas of research, of teaching and of permanent formation in the areas of management and tourism, as to enlarge and consolidate its nature of upper studies school of management and tourism, in direct and dynamic connection with the enterprises and other organisations;
- The human, scientific and technical preparation of its students and other participants in sessions and formation studies developing in them a spirit of innovation and open mind in what concerns the change and capacity to interpret and critically intervene in the community where the enterprise or organisation is settled and to whom they will render their activity.
The integration of our students in the active life is another goal that has guided our performance. Therefore, all the courses provided by ISAL, include a curricular training in its study plan.
On the 16. September, 2004, His Excellency the President of the Regional Government of Madeira inaugurated the new facilities of ISAL. This event was covered by several mass media, according to the news published by Jornal da Madeira, on the 17. September, 2004:
«The courses provided by the Instituto Superior de Administração e Línguas (ISAL) have been the adequate bet to answer the needs of the Region”. The idea was defended by the president of the Regional Government, yesterday, during the inauguration of the new facilities of the first institution of higher studies in Madeira. Stating that ISAL “ fortunately was born in Madeira”, Albert João Jardim classified as “notorious” the work developed by this institution considering that up to the school year of 2002/03 around 500 students had obtained the academic degree of Bacharel and “with a guarantee of a job”.
To Jardim, this means that ISAL has been able to choose the courses that have a guarantee of a job. The governor made a reference to the Accountancy and Finances Course that is about to start being taught at ISAL According to him, “within the area of higher studies in Madeira, it is needed to have the common sense not to allow the coincidence of courses”. He also stated, and referring to the above mentioned course , that “ it is opened in a clever way, once that due to the process that will lead to the regionalization of the fiscal administration in the Region, we are going to start a new period in our regional fiscal life for which adequately prepared students will be needed.»
The expansion of ISAL permitted the use of a wide variety of equipments which allowed not only the improvement of the scientific and pedagogical levels, but also an increase in the offer of courses.
In the school year of 2007/2008, the implementation of the adequacy of the courses offered at ISAL to the juridical regime, as stated by the Legal-Decree nº7472006, dated 24. March, thus making possible the aims of the Bologna Declaration, was relevant to explicit the adhesion of this Institute to a paradigm – a teaching system based on the acquisition and development of competences- that is somehow already present in the working methodology adopted at ISAL
Nowadays, ISAL offers three degrees, adequate to Bologna, several pos-graduations aimed at Directors and Board Members of enterprises and official entities, within the ambit of obtaining further formation throughout life.