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Review of the seminar of the Cross-faculty network for quality assurance held on 2nd November 2010 at the Rectorate building of the University of Montenegro

Published date: 06.12.2010 12:24 | Author: Ivona Međedović

Ispis Print


35 representatives from the sector for higher education have participated at the seminar organized for staff working at institutional and faculty level with the responsibilities in management of quality assurance. The participants came from state and private universities, as well as from the Ministry of education and science (Sector for higher education, Department for Scientific Research and TEMPUS Programme). Besides, representatives from the students’ parliaments from the University of Montenegro, University of Mediteran  and University Donja Gorica were present. There were three international experts who significantly contributed to the discussion: professor Ray Land and Dr Catherine Owen from the University of Strathclyde in Scotland and Hugh Glenvill, a consultant from England.

 

Participants were welcomed by Dr Patricia Georgieva, a consultant for quality assurance within the IPA team of the project on ‘National qualification framework and quality assurance in education’. In her presentation on ‘Criteria for effective systems for quality assurance’, Georgieva emphasized parameters for elaboration of quality systems and illustrated ‘closed circle of quality control’ for programme reviews. She as well explained criteria for effectiveness that represent a minimum for assessment of system’s effectiveness in the area of quality assurance, which are:

· Values, purpose and strategic approach;

· Measurable indicators of quality;

· Function and structure of the quality system;

· Organization, management and resources of the quality system;

· Data management;

· Communication, including institutional mechanisms for exchange of good practice in quality management and improvement;

· Periodical review of all arrangements for quality assurance.

 

This presentation can be downloaded from the website of the Cross-faculty network for quality assurance www.qualitynet.edu.me

 

After this presentation, there was a plenary discussion where barriers for setting up the process were discussed as well as quality mechanisms.

 

The topic of the afternoon workshop was creation of the structure for quality assurance at the University. Participants were divided in two groups and each group had its chair person who led the discussion and a reporter who took minutes and presented the report on findings of the group at the final plenary session.

 

First part of the workshop consisted of the task to agree on ideal approach to quality of an institution that they represent and to formulate common statement on policy of the quality. After presenting the report, the groups’ next task was to, in accordance with agreed statement, create and discuss adequate structure for quality assurance at the university. Both groups could use strategic documents of their institutions, for example strategic plans, strategies for quality assurance, action plans for quality improvement and so on.

 

The aim of this workshop was to start with the draft of the quality statement and based on this statement to build adequate structure for quality assurance of respective institutions for higher education. These structure and criteria that manage functioning of these processes have to be compatible with the quality statement as well as with the university vision, its purpose and values, and long-term and short-term objectives.

 

Reports from the two groups prompted further discussions at the final plenary session. Participants agreed that it is becoming imperative for their faculties and institutions to develop and support their quality systems on a continuous base in order to achieve overall improvement of their performance. The external quality assurance framework, based on periodic external evaluations and re-accreditation encourages universities and other higher education institutions in Montenegro to seek incremental improvements in their performance and stimulates such improvements through evaluations at regular intervals every four years. 

 

It is expected that, in this way, suport will be provided for elaboration of effective quality assurance systems at Montenegrin universities and instituions for higher education.