Accreditation comparative study in higher education system of different countries to propose an appropriate model

Accreditation comparative study in higher education system of different countries to propose an appropriate model by Mohsen Talebzadeh Nobarian, Masoumeh Abdi , Version 2007, EURASHE_symp_QA_071022-24_pres_ABDI_and_NOBARIAN.pdf (0.5 MB) - This article attempts to explain the definition of quality assurance in higher education,and after describing the concept of quality assurance we will present various methods of quality assurance in higher education.
The paper proceeds by analysis of accreditation as a relatively complete method in quality assurance and we will consider the historical development of accreditation in higher education. Also, different approaches to accreditation and different types of it are studied here. As a concluding remark accreditation comparative study in higher education system of different countries are assessed to find an appropriate model for accreditation.

Internal quality development and assurance in HEIs

Internal quality development and assurance in HEIs by Violetta Atanassova, Version 2007, EURASHE_symp_QA_071022-24_pres_ATANASSOVA.pdf (0.1 MB)

Students’ view on Quality Assurance seen in transnational perspective

Students’ view on Quality Assurance seen in transnational perspective by Bartek Banaszak, Version 2007, EURASHE_symp_QA_071022-24_pres_BANASZAK.pdf (0.3 MB) - High quality of higher education is one of the priorities within debates on higher education throughout the world. In European debates, we have established that quality of education is first and foremost a student topic – not only do they experience the quality of teaching daily; their future directly depends on the quality that their teachers deliver. Student organizations, including the European Students’ Union, naturally have a strong view on the quality assurance and accreditation. This view is unique because only students can see the problems with quality from the learner’s perspective. The basic principle from which our views derive is the statement that accessible higher education of low quality is worthless and high quality education that is not widely accessible is meaningless.

National perspective:
ESU sees still existing problem of distinguishing between quality assurance and accreditation which in many countries makes the situation of QA and accreditation chaotic. Quality Assurance is the process that ensures the delivery of agreed standards should take place on all levels: course, programme or institutional level. Accreditation, on the other hand, is both a status and process aims at certifying acceptable minimum quality and giving opportunity.
Within European debates, the need of involving student in quality assurance is seems to be no longer contested. Numerous survey, including our own Bologna With Student Eyes 2007, show that students are more and more included in quality assurance processes. Student as the largest stakeholder should be included in all levels of quality assurance due to their unique and at the same time balanced view on the issues related to higher education. Students should be the equal partners in this process reflected first of all by students on full rights to the panel of experts and study visit teams. The examples of student involvement from Netherlands and Poland are to be presented.

Transnational perspective.
Thanks to mobility of student and staff the transnational dimension was present from the beginning of the discussion on quality assurance. We have seen an innovative approach to the debate in Europe as quality assurance became one of the pillars European Higher Education Area. Quality Assurance is mentioned as the top priority in all Bologna ministerial summits starting from Berlin Communique from 2003. The principle of student participation was stressed in 2005 in Bergen. The problem of mutual trust as regards quality assurance and accreditation was tackled two years later in London when ministers supported the idea of establishing the Register for Quality Assurance agencies.
But this discussion can be no longer limited to Europe as we are seeing an enormous rise in the provision of transnational education. Only European programmes like Tempus and Erasmus Mundus affect the mobility of students around the globe. The increasing number of free movers on the global level raises the question about mutual trust as regards quality of education and recognition of diplomas. The new forms of cross-border education developing rapidly in last decade make the issue even more complicated. In such situation quality assurance mechanism is still big problem to tackle. ESU strongly believes that UNESCO/OECD guidelines are the first and the very good step forward to tackle the problem of quality assurance in transnational perspective on the global level. However, they are not widely disseminated and used. ESU therefore encourages governments to continue to take a public approach to education – quality assurance and accreditation have a stronger role to play when backed up by a state.

The Bologna Process as a Model for Higher Education Reform

The Bologna Process as a Model for Higher Education Reform by Sjur Bergan, Version 2007, EURASHE_symp_QA_071022-24_pres_BERGAN.pdf (0.5 MB) - The presentation will examine the origins, development and characteristics of the Bologna Process. It will look at the conditions in which the Bologna Process came about and consider the factors that led to 46 European countries agreeing the main features of their higher education reform and then implementing them at national level. It will also look at the different stakeholders involved in the Process, in particular governments, higher education institutions and students, but also international organizations.
The presentation will also seek to examine how “Bologna policies” have evolved since 1999 and also consider some possible issues for the European Higher Education Area beyond 2010.
Finally, the presentation will look at the extent to which the Bologna Process might serve as a model for cooperation on higher education reform in other regions of the world.

Student Involvement in Quality Enhancement at National and Institutional Levels in Scotland

Student Involvement in Quality Enhancement at National and Institutional Levels in Scotland by Duncan Cockburn, Version 2007, EURASHE_symp_QA_071022-24_pres_COCKBURN.pdf (55 KB)

Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Quality Assurance in Higher Education by Stefan Delplace, Version 2007, EURASHE_symp_QA_071022-24_pres_DELPLACE_1.pdf (0.5 MB)

Integrating an industry perspective into HE

Integrating an industry perspective into HE by John Harper, Version 2007, EURASHE_symp_QA_071022-24_pres_HARPER.pdf (56 KB) - The presentation will review and discuss the range of mechanisms used by a Scottish university to integrate an industry perspective into the design and delivery of its programmes. The presentation will conclude by highlighting some recent developments designed specifically to address the lifelong learning agenda and, in turn, the forthcoming skills shortage which will arise as a result of demographic changes.

Quality Assurance: the Flemish Experience

Quality Assurance: the Flemish Experience by Liesbeth Hens, Version 2007, EURASHE_symp_QA_071022-24_pres_HENS.pdf (0.2 MB) - In order to implement the Bologna principles in Flemish HE a new educational law was voted in 2003. This law was also the beginning of a new system of quality assurance in HE and introduced the concept of accreditation.

Accreditation is the formal recognition of a programme based on a decision of an independent quality assurance agency, the Nederlands-Vlaamse Accreditatieorganisatie (NVAO) (the official Dutch-Flemish Accreditation Organisation), which verifies whether this programme meets the pre-determined minimal quality requirements.
Accreditation is only one part of the quality assurance system of higher education in Flanders, Belgium, which comprises an internal part, an external part and the part where the formal decision is taken.
Internal quality assurance: self-evaluations
Programmes are evaluated by the higher education institution itself, which publishes a self-evaluation report.
External quality assurance: external quality assessment
The self-evaluation report is the starting point for the external quality assessment, which produces the assessment report. The external quality assessment is organised by VLIR (Flemish Interuniversity Council) and VLHORA (Council of Flemish University Colleges).
The formal decision: accreditation
Higher education programmes that have successfully completed the external quality assessment send their assessment report to the NVAO, which evaluates the thoroughness of the external assessment and accepts or rejects its findings. A positive accreditation decision by the NVAO results in the recognition of the programme and is kept or listed in the Higher Education Register for 8 years. If the programme is not accredited it will be deleted from the Higher Education Register and the higher education institution cannot award a recognised degree. Accreditation is a prerequisite of funding for degree programmes and study financing for students.
In the presentation the system will be expounded with more details, situated in an international environment, and advantages and pitfalls will be indicated.

Companies’ role in integrating industry and HE

Companies’ role in integrating industry and HE by Chris Renwick, Version 2007, EURASHE_symp_QA_071022-24_pres_RENWICK.pdf (0.2 MB)