Quality Assurance in higher education: processes, methods and strategies in universities in Italy
Learning outcomes of the course unit
This teaching module aims to provide participating students with some useful knowledge and methodologies to encourage active participation in the organs provided by the University Quality Assurance System, based on the current ANVUR and MIUR regulations.
At the end of the course, the student should be able to:
- know the key aspects of the "student" role as an active subject in the representative bodies envisaged in each university;
- to know the position of the student within the various roles and responsibilities that characterize the QA processes in Italian universities;
- to be able to read and understand the information and the basic structure, in addition to the results of the surveys on students' opinion / satisfaction;
- being able to identify the critical issues that may emerge from a reading of the results of the surveys on the opinion / satisfaction of the students;
- know the essential aspects of the organization of the University (Rector, bodies, Departments, etc. etc.);
- know (in summary) the QA system envisaged by ANVUR (AVA 2 system), and in particular the key steps of the accreditation process;
- to know (in a schematic form) the structure of the processes and interactions envisaged in a university's QA system, considering some examples for UNIPR;
- know the various life stages of the CdS life cycle;
- be able to understand how the various stages of life of CdS are organized and subject to monitoring activities for QA purposes;
- know the processes related to the life cycle of a university CD: planning, delivery and monitoring;
- know the structure and contents of some key documents that are provided for the description of the QA processes related to the Cds;
- know the essential aspects of the preparation of the most important frameworks of SUA-CDS;
- know the basic elements to be considered to evaluate the preparation of the teaching sheets (syllabus);
- know the characteristic aspects of a "shared" or "shared" teaching experience;
- know the methods through which the "shared" or "shared" teaching experiences can favor a better relationship between subjects such as the President of the CDS and the CPDS;
- know how to design and organize the key phases of a work "in team" or "in group" and know how to exploit these methods for the management of QA processes;
- to be able to analyze the quantitative data and the most important information that constitute the basis of the work in the Monitoring Groups of the CdS;
- to be able to understand the operating logic of these bodies, also with examples for the Cds of the Department of Economic and Social Sciences;
- know the structure and contents of some key documents that are foreseen in the work of the CPDS: the case of the evaluation of the SUA-CDS sheets;
- know the structure and contents of some key documents that are foreseen in the work of the CPDS: the case of the CPDS annual report.
Course contents summary
INTRODUCTION: the structure of the contents can be updated before the beginning of the lessons in the classroom based on the training project agreed with the University Quality Control Center.
Lesson zero: 1. Presentation of the course contents: the educational objectives, the contents, the agenda of the lectures, etc. etc.; 2. The "class group": short presentations and description of the various roles in the Departments and / or Cds in which the students are inserted; 3. Presentation of the teaching tools of the course. 4. What expectations about the training experience? A short questionnaire 5. The PDCA cycle (ensuring quality) + notes on ANVUR.
Lesson n. 1: LESSON TITLE: "How can I vote for my prof.?": Points of view and behavior of university students who evaluate their university. EXERCISE: Students are asked to discuss possible interpretations of the OPIS questionnaires.
Lesson n. 2: LESSON TITLE: Quality Assurance (AQ) in University: general principles. Agenda topics of the lecture: 1. Quality and the AVA system 2. Architecture of the University of Parma QA system 3. The University Quality Control 4. The Evaluation Unit 5. Where is the student's role?
EXERCISE: Analysis, conducted through the use of "guiding questions", of the main differences between the role of the University Quality Office and that of the University Evaluation Unit. Examination of the role of student representatives in the academic senate in relation to the establishment / modification / suppression of the CdS.
Lesson n. 3: LESSON TITLE: Quality Assurance (AQ) in University: general principles. PART 2 Agenda lesson topics: 1. Review: AQ system architecture 2. Key documents for the CdS 3. How is a CdS born? 4. Frameworks A of the SU-CdS EXERCISE: Examination of some "key words" related to the Quality Assurance system of a University. Analysis of the SUA-CdS Board of the LMCU in Veterinary Medicine of the University of Parma and identification of the main sections and frameworks with identification of the main critical points and strengths of the CdS.
Lesson n. 4: LESSON TITLE: The AQ processes for teaching and sources: the SUA-CdS form. EXERCISE: Examples / simulation models of evaluation of SUA-CdS and their analysis.
Lesson n. 5: LESSON TITLE: University AQ: the role of the Joint Commissions (CPDS) and the annual report of the CPDS. EXERCISE: Analysis, conducted through the help of "guiding questions", concerning the SMA of the LMCU in Veterinary Medicine of the University of Parma and analysis of sentinel indicators.
Lesson n. 6: LESSON TITLE: "Phases, instruments and timing of the periodic accreditation procedure for Universities" EXERCISE: Analysis of some pictures of HIS-CdS of the LMCU in Veterinary Medicine of the University of Parma and preparation of the pre-visitation book concerning requirements R3.A1, R3.A3, R3.B1, R3.B3. Discussion on the findings.
Bibliography: Guidelines for the Periodic Accreditation of University Offices and Courses - AVA 2.2 of 10 August 2017 (website www.anvur.it, AVA section).
Other materials: 6 educational videos produced to support classroom activities.
Acquisition of knowledge: lectures and short videos (blended teaching). Acquisition of the ability to apply knowledge: exercises. Acquisition of independent judgment: during the course the students will be stimulated to verify the results in the simulations and with group works. Acquisition of learning abilities: for each topic we proceed with the illustration of the objectives linked to the procedures, analyzing the responsibilities of the actors involved, the operating methods of implementation and any supporting documents that are produced. Acquisition of technical language: in educational videos students will find the definitions and key concepts related to the culture of quality assurance in training.
Assessment methods and criteria
The final assessment of learning for the acquisition of IDONEITA’ is carried out through an interview that concerns the documentation analyzed during the course. Knowledge and understanding will be assessed with some questions that together have the value of 30 points. The ability to apply knowledge will be assessed by a discussion on an example similar to the simulations used in the classroom. Learning skills and independent judgment will be assessed with specific questions for each student during the interview. The ability to communicate with appropriate technical language will always be evaluated through the interview.