Presentation on theme: "Changes in Quality Assurance: the Case of Germany ECA Seminar Changing Systems Den Haag, 9 December 2009 Academic Director Prof. Dr. Rainer Kuenzel Wilhelm-Busch-Straße."— Presentation transcript:
Changes in Quality Assurance: the Case of Germany ECA Seminar Changing Systems Den Haag, 9 December 2009 Academic Director Prof. Dr. Rainer Kuenzel Wilhelm-Busch-Straße 22 D Hannover University of Osnabrueck Professor of Economics/Higher Education Management and Policy Department of Economics Rolandstr. 8, D Osnabrueck Phone.: , Fax.: Mobile: Central Evaluation and Accreditation Agency, Hanover
1 Changes in Quality Assurance: the Case of Germany I.Introduction II.Main features of System Accreditation 1.Procedure 2.Criteria III.Problems 1.Problems in the execution of SA 2.Problems of proper judgment in SA 3.Problems of transition to SA 4.Problems of enhancing quality by SA
2 I. Introduction Double purpose of Bologna reform in Germany: strengthen cohesion between European countries solve specific problems of the German university system: – long average study duration – high attrition rate – lack of funding – disregard of employability in many curricula
3 I. Introduction Detailed prescriptions for all new Bachelor and Master programs were enforced by program accreditation in order to solve structural problems of the higher education system and achieve the Bologna goals.
4 I. Introduction Program accreditation was carried out by six independent Accreditation Agencies under the supervision of the German Accreditation Council.
5 I. Introduction Opposition against the Bologna reform was especially fierce in southern Germany. Support came primarily from the Universities of Applied Sciences (Fachhochschulen).
6 I. Introduction In order to come to a compromise in the Standing Conference of the Federal State Ministers of Higher Education the so-called System Accreditation (SA) was introduced in 2008/9.
7 II. Main features of SA 1.Procedure Eligibility requirement: minimal number of accredited programs Documentation on internal governance structure, institutional mission and profile, internal QA/QM system, institutional development strategy. Comment by student representatives. Two site visits of a group of 5 experts and in-depth evaluation of a sample of study programs
8 II. Main features of SA 1.Procedure Purpose of first site visit: –rounding off information on HEIs QA/QM system –selecting three out of eight program features to be reviewed across all programs –making a preliminary decision on study programs to be assessed according to the standards and guidelines of AC for program accreditation
9 II. Main features of SA 1.Procedure Purpose of second site visit: –analysis of self-report and documentation –review of selected program features –discussion with stakeholders in HEI –compilation of draft report on institutions QA/QM system –final decision on sample of programs to be evaluated in detail
10 II. Main features of SA 1.Procedure Criteria for composition of program sample: –15% of all programs on offer, at least three –cross-section of all types of programs –results of review of program features
11 II. Main features of SA 1.Procedure Separate expert group for each assessment of a program in the sample. Experts have to decide whether flaws and weaknesses of programs can be traced back to functional deficits of QA/QM system. Final report validates the effectiveness of the QA/QM system of the HEI and makes a recommendation in favor or against an accreditation decision by the accreditation commission of the agency. Instead of final verdict the panel can recommend the suspension of the accreditation procedure for months.
12 II. Main features of SA 1.Procedure The accreditation decision, a summary of the final report and the names of the panel members are published. An appeals process is in place. The accreditation is valid for six years. HEI is exempted from program accreditiation. After three years the assessment of a sample of study programs has to be repeated (half-time sample). The SA can be restricted to an organizational subunit of the HEI.
13 II. Main features of SA 2. Criteria Criterion 1: The HEI has defined and published an educational profile for its programs and the institution at large as part of its development strategy. It continually revises the educational goals of its programs.
14 II. Main features of SA 2. Criteria Criterion 2: The HEI has a steering system in place which guarantees that the following goals and requirements are met by its educational programs: high academic standards employability citizenship personal development goals of Bologna process requirements of NQF stakeholder involvement
15 II. Main features of SA 2. Criteria Criterion 3: The HEI applies a system of QA and quality enhancement which meets the ESG for Quality in Higher Education.
16 II. Main features of SA 2. Criteria Criterion 4: The HEI has a reporting system in place which documents the structural and procedural characteristics of the educational programs as well as the processes, instruments, results and effects of the QA/QM system.
17 II. Main features of SA 2. Criteria Criterion 5: The competences, responsibilities and decision making processes in the QA/QM system for teaching and learning are clearly defined and published.
18 II. Main features of SA 2. Criteria Criterion 6: At least once a year the HEI informs its commissions for teaching and learning as well as the general public and the owner of the HEI about measures and results of quality assurance and quality enhancement in teaching and learning.
19 III. Problems 1.Problems in the execution of SA: Size of sample of program features Indeterminateness of program sample Insufficient definition of required documentation
20 III. Problems 2.Problems of proper judgment in SA: Blurred picture by overlap of PA and SA Hidden assumptions about relationship between QA/QM system and quality of programs
21 III. Problems 3.Problems of transition to SA: Successful SA will block the necessary corrections in the Bachelor/Master system. HEIs are not ready for SA, yet some give it a try. The development of effective QA/QM systems takes time and counseling:
22 III. Problems 4. Problems of enhancing quality by SA: Accreditation does not foster improvement unless coupled with strategic management by contract. This implies the active involvement of a governing authority vis-avis the university leadership.