Since early 2009, the University of Aruba (UA) has made quality assurance its focus. In its strategic plan 2015 – 2020, the UA has renewed its commitment to continuous quality improvement, teaching, learning and research innovation by taking concrete actions to transform and innovate, focus on quality, advance research, improve efficiency and effectiveness of support staff, improve the quality of financial accountability, and develop 3-party funding options.
There is an Interfaculty Quality Meeting (IFQM) held monthly to monitor the development of quality assurance and improvement systems. The Center for Quality Assurance (CQA) is responsible for providing support, coordination and administration of activities and initiatives connected to quality assurance, improvement, and accreditation. CQA works in close collaboration with IFQM to set up and strengthen quality assurance structures, policies, and processes in the UA.
STUDENTS EVALUATE THEIR COURSES AND LECTURERS
At the UA, students have a voice when it comes to quality. At the end of every semester, all students are requested to fill in an on-line survey to evaluate their courses and lecturers. In addition to on-line surveys, focus groups are also held to get in-depth feedback on students’ experience of courses. Because of the frequency of feedback gathering moments, programs get valuable information from students to take improvement actions. By providing anonymous feedback, students play a key role in improving the quality of UA programs. CQA coordinates with faculties and administration to carry out evaluation and assessment of academic programs and services offered by the UA.
PROFESSIONALIZATION OF EDUCATION
Assuring and improving quality assurance and improvement at the UA includes continuous professional development of its teaching and non-teaching staff as well as the cultivation of a spirit of innovation. In May 2017, the UA Board of Trustees initiated a Professional Learning and Development (PLD) Initiative that offers professional development programs in education, research, innovation and collaboration. In October 2017, the UA-21 Innovation Fellowship was launched to ensure a broad-base process of innovation and the use of ICT in education. CQA spearheads the development of professionalization programs and innovation activities in collaboration with faculties and administration offices.
Accreditation is a quality label that is granted formally by an independent authority to an academic and professional program that meets required standards related to a Bachelor or Master level. Over the last four years, the UA has invited the NVAO (Nederlands Vlaamse Accreditatieorganisatie) to evaluate its programs against international Bachelor and Master degree standards. The following six programs below have been awarded a positive evaluation. Click on the buttons below to read the NVAO positive evaluation of six programs. CQA provides support to faculties in their cyclical review and self-evaluation of their existing academic programs; and coordinates procedures associated with accreditation.