AgŔncia per a la Qualitat del Sistema Universitari de Catalunya

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10.2.2014

Activities in 2014

The activities are organised into six strategic areas: Programmes of Study, Quality of Teaching Staff, Knowledge Generation, Internationalisation, Strategic Management and Communication and Internal Organisation. All together, one third of the activities envisaged in the Action Plan are new and will require considerable effort to be successfully carried out. In order to comply with this Plan, in addition to the resources allocated by AQU Catalunya, it will also be necessary to collaborate closely with and receive the support of the universities and the Executive Council of the Catalan Government (Govern de la Generalitat de Catalunya).

PDF PDF Action Plan for 2014 (aproved by Board of Management, 17/12/2013)

With regard to Programmes of Study, work will continue with the implementation of the Framework for the validation, monitoring, modification and accreditation of recognised university degree programmes (VSMA Framework). This will undoubtedly be the year in which the external site visits begin to take place in preparation for the procedure of programme accreditation. AQU Catalunya and the universities have so far set site visits in the case of around thirty faculties.

Within this same strategic area, the AUDIT programme's certification process is starting in order to minimise to a considerable extent the process of programme validation and modification by faculties that are duly certified, in line with developments set out in the European standards (ESG). While this process is being prepared, a series of measures is to be applied to reduce the intensity of programme validation to enable efforts to be focused on the site visits and programme accreditation at faculty level. Another important difference is that AQU Catalunya is laying the groundwork to establish collaboration agreements with international agencies that issue quality labels for degrees and qualifications in specific fields, in order to fulfil any demands from the universities in this respect. These cases will be integrated into the Agency's standard processes of external visits and accreditation.

With regard to Quality of Teaching Staff, the pre-selection assessment of teaching staff by the universities is to be maintained, as well as the evaluation of merits in research, teaching and management. Of particular note this year is the start of the study on the profiles of tenure-track, senior and professorial staff from the profiles of accredited staff, which should publicly provide guidance to all stakeholders, in particular the academic staff involved.

Knowledge Generation is to be consolidated, as this is a key strategic area that generates added value for Catalan universities. The fifth survey of the labour market outcomes/destinations of graduates is accordingly to be launched, new developments of which are: that it will provide information on Master's programmes; a employers' survey, funded from external sources, which will provide the university system with information on the opinions of employers on the labour market outcomes/destinations of graduates; and the analysis of the outcomes of the student satisfaction survey, which for the first time will be incorporated into programme review through the WINDDAT indicators system.

AQU Catalunya is also to begin the design of a model to be used in the faculty diagnosis of Catalan universities, the objective being to obtain an initial overview of faculty structure and profile in the universities and identify aspects that can or need to be improved and/or enhanced.

In the strategic area of Internationalisation, in addition to continuing to collaborate with agreed projects, an analysis is to be started, together with the universities in Catalonia, of tools and instruments used by AQU Catalunya that can reinforce the position (enhanced "fitness for purpose") of the Catalan university system within the context of both Europe and worldwide, together with a higher level of cooperation.

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