The prevailing legal framework lays down that registered degrees must be monitored by a quality assurance agency, on the basis of the available public information, until they are reviewed for the purposes of accreditation renewal. (RD 1393/2007, art. 27).
Monitoring has a twofold objective. On the one hand, it serves as a useful tool for management in the university that allows for the delivery of courses to be evaluated on the basis of data and indicators, together with the drawing up, where applicable, of enhancement proposals and/or corrective measures; on the other, and together with the site visit, it provides a source of evidence for programme accreditation.
Drawing up of monitoring reports
Monitoring progress reports on degree programmes (IST) have to be drawn up according to the GUIDE TO THE MONITORING OF RECOGNISED BACHELOR AND MASTER'S DEGREES. Universities and faculties must issue a progress report once a year for each programme that is taught. The universities are free to specify the level of grouping and the structure of the reports. Each university must also submit a report (full university report) with an assessment of the delivery of the corresponding programmes and the overall situation of these programmes within the university.
Monitoring of the 2010-2011 academic year of recognised Bachelor and Master's programmes is being undertaken by the Agency in 2012. Programme monitoring will this year cover all recognised Bachelor and Master's degree in the higher education system in Catalonia. The dates for the submission of reports corresponding to the 2010-2011 academic year of recognised programmes are from 16 May-6 June.
AQU Catalunya has set up a webpage (WINDDAT) for the universities with teaching indicators for programme development and analysis, which provide data on the demand for places, entrance grades, the number of places offered, student achievement rate, etc., for use by academic coordinators in drawing up monitoring reports and comparing data with similar courses being offered at other universities in Catalonia.
Evaluation of the monitoring progress report. AQU Catalunya chooses a selection out of all the monitoring reports received throughout the year for evaluation purposes. Priority is given to reports that, according to the university's criterion, either require special attention, contain proposals for substantial modification or are considered to be appropriate according to the analysis made of the programme delivery indicators. Reports on programmes from faculties where a site visit is either planned or required prior to accreditation of the faculty's programmes are also evaluated.
Each report is referred to a specific review panel according to subject area. The review panels issue a programme monitoring evaluation report that is sent to the university, which can in turn present any supporting arguments. These are assessed by the review panel, which then issues the definitive programme monitoring report, that is made public.
During the evaluation process, and in cases where severe flaws are detected that lead to a proposal for substantial modifications and consequently programme revalidation, AQU Catalunya notifies the university, the Directorate General for Universities and the Universities Council, in accordance with the prevailing regulatory framework.
Monitoring evaluation report (universities). AQU Catalunya issues a monitoring evaluation report for each university every year, which gives an overview of the development of programme monitoring at the institution. This report may propose enhancement or corrective actions to be implemented across all programmes.
The full university reports are checked and endorsed by the AQU Quality Assurance Commission (CAQ) and then sent to the participating universities and made public.