Quality System for the Educational Activities

All universities and university colleges in Norway shall have a system for quality assurance that contributes to continual improvements in the educational activities provided. The system is to provide the institution with a solid foundation for self-assessment and quality improvement.

​Brief description of Nord University’s quality assurance system for education
This document replaces the former Quality Manual for Education and describes how Nord University works to meet the requirements to systematic quality assurance according to the Act relating to universities and university colleges, the Regulations pertaining to the quality of education and the Academic Supervision Regulations. The document provides decision-makers as well as individual employees with an overview of the information contained in the quality system and of how it is maintained. The document is found here: Beskrivelse av kvalitetssystem for utdanning ved Nord universitet.pdf [Norwegian only]

Roles and responsibilities in quality assurance of the education programmes

If a faculty has role descriptions for responsibilities in education areas that deviate from these descriptions, this should be clarified. The faculties’ descriptions will be added as appendices to the quality assurance system. If the faculties want an alternative role description, it is important that they make sure there is no breach in the chain of responsibility. The roles described relate to the education areas. Employees in these roles may also have other tasks. For the PhD education programmes, please refer to the research pages at https://www.nord.no/en/research/Pages/default.aspx for more detailed information.

 
The board of Directors
  • The Board carries the overall responsibility for systematic quality assurance in the area of education.
  • The Board is responsible for the priorities and decisions’ facilitating development of the quality in the academic portfolio.
  • The Board is responsible for the academic portfolio supporting the profile areas.
The Student
  • Students are responsible for actively participating in learning processes.
  • Students are to actively participate in the councils and committees where student democracy is represented.
  • Students are to participate in evaluations, contribute with ideas to improvement as well as in the development of quality improvement culture.
  • Students are responsible for reporting any experienced conditions that are detrimental to their learning and professional development.
Rector
  • The Rector is, on behalf of the Board, responsible for the systematic quality assurance’s satisfying internal and external requirements.
  • The Rector is responsible for the final approving of study plans, accreditation and re-accreditaion of programmes (> 30 ECTS credits).
  • The Rector is to ensure that priorities and framework conditions contribute to good quality of the education programmes.
  • The Rector reports to the Board through the annual Quality Report for Education.
Pro-Rector for Education
  • The Pro-Rector for Education chairs the university’s overall Education Committee.
  • The Pro-Rector for Education is responsible for systematic quality assurance being maintained in the educational activities.
  • The Pro-Rector for Education is responsible for systematic quality assurance being documented in accordance with current regulations.
  • The Pro-Rector for Education is responsible for further development of systematic quality assurance.
  • The Pro-Rector for Education is responsible for securing a well-functioning system for accreditation and re-accreditation of study programmes (> 30 ECTS credits).
Dean
  • The Dean holds the overall responsibility for quality assurance and for a quality assurance culture to be established at the Faculty.
  • The Dean is responsible for allocating resources to the conducting of study programmes.
  • The Dean is responsible for providing annual reports to the Rector through the Faculty’s quality report about education.
  • The Dean is responsible for the Faculty’s action plan and budget being considered in connection with initiatives for further development of quality in education programmes.
  • The Dean is responsible for securing good preparatory work in the Faculty’s work on accreditation and re-accreditation of study programmes exceeding 30 ECTS credits.
  • The Dean is responsible for approving study plans and accreditation/re-accreditation of study programmes comprising 30 ECTS credits or less.
Vice-Dean for Education
    The Vice-Dean for Education is, on behalf of the Dean, responsible for:
  • The Vice-Dean for Education chair the Faculty’s Education Committee.
  • The Vice-Dean for Education is, together with the Dean, responsible for ensuring and documenting that the Faculty’s academic portfolio meets current regulation requirements, including contributing to a well-functioning system for accreditation and re-accreditation of study programmes.
  • The Vice-Dean for Education shall, together with the Dean, contribute to the education programmes’ being covered by academic personnel in accordance with the requirements of the Academic Supervision Regulations.
  • The Vice-Dean for Education is, together with the Dean, responsible for implementing quality improvement measures and following these up.
  • The Vice-Dean for Education shall be a driving force in systematic quality assurance and contribute to the further development of a quality assurance culture.
Academic Division Head
  • The Academic Division Head is responsible for the facilitating of research activities and professional development, and is to ensure that teaching is research-based.
  • Academic Division Head is, together with the deanery, responsible for a study programme having the necessary resources available.
  • Further regulations pertaining to the Academic Division Head’s responsibilities is to be worked out at each respective Faculty.
  • The Academic Division Head shall be a driving force in systematic quality assurance and contribute to the further development of a quality assurance culture.
Study Programme Coordinator (SPC)
The study programme coordinator (SPC) shall exercise professional and pedagogical leadership for the study programme, and be responsible for planning, implementation, evaluation and development of the study programme in accordance with §2(2) and §2(3) of the study quality regulations. This entails:
  • The SPC is the chairperson of the study programme council.
  • They assess whether the study programme meets the requirements for competence based on the provisions of the Regulations on the supervision and control of the quality of Norwegian higher education, and they report any needs to the faculty management.
  • Developing the study programme's academic content, profile and relevance in collaboration with the academic environment, the study programme council and relevant partners in society and working life.
  • In collaboration with the teaching staff, to develop a programme design with good coherence between courses, and continuity between the descriptor, teaching, learning activities and forms of assessment.
  • To ensure to the learning activities being research-based.
  • That the SPC, together with the head of the course group and dean, has a duty to ensure that the study programme has a high international quality and that there is a well-functioning window of mobility in the study programme.
  • Obtain information about the study programme from national evaluations, study programme and course evaluations and other sources of information, and use the information to improve and develop the study programme.
  • To hold regular meetings with student representatives about improving the quality of the study programme and the learning environment.
  • To provide documentation of the quality work on the study programme.
  • Providing an annual review of information about the study programme, to ensure that it is up to date and relevant.
  • Be a driving force in the systematic quality improvement work and contribute to further developing the quality culture of the study programme.
Person with course responsibility
The person with course responsibility is responsible for planning, implementation, evaluation and development of the course, so that there is good coherence between the descriptor, teaching, learning activities and forms of assessment. As a general rule, the person with course responsibility shall teach the course. This entails:
  • The person with course responsibility shall develop and annually revise the course description/course plan with descriptors in accordance with the National Qualifications Framework, and ensure that the course is relevant to the study programme(s) the course is part of.
  • Responsibility for registering the syllabus.
  • That the LMS area (Canvas) contains updated and relevant information.
  • Providing an annual review of information about the course, to ensure that it is up to date and relevant.
  • There must be one person with course responsibility per source. Where the course is offered at several study locations, the person with course responsibility shall ensure that the students receive equal quality.
  • Contribute to and follow up on, evaluations of the course and implement quality-promoting measures together with the study programme coordinator (SPC).
  • Provide input to the faculty about relevant examiners.
  • Maintain contact with the examiner(s) to ensure that examination results are available within the deadline.
  • Ensure examination question papers and associated examiner guides are prepared and made available to the students no later than upon publication of the examination results.
  • The person with course responsibility, together with the students, shall contribute to creating a good learning environment.
  • The person with course responsibility shall be a driving force in the systematic quality improvement work, and contribute to further developing the quality culture of the course.
Subject Teacher/Lecturer/Supervisor on the Course
  • The Subject Teacher/Lecturer/Supervisor shall conduct teaching and learning activities that contribute to the students’ acquiring the learning outcomes for the course.
  • The Subject Teacher/Lecturer/Supervisor shall have a running dialogue with students regarding the quality of the course.
  • The Subject Teacher/Lecturer/Supervisor shall participate on arenas for quality development of the course as well as the study programme.
  • The Subject Teacher/Lecturer/Supervisor shall participate in systematic quality assurance of the course and contribute to further developing quality assurance culture.
Administration
  • The Administration shall, together with education leaders, contribute to interaction and work flow in quality assurance.
  • The Administration shall facilitate conducting systematic quality assurance and contribute to the further developing of quality assurance culture.
Education Committee
  • The Education Committee is an advisory body for the University’s management in all cases pertaining to education and study quality. The Committee shall ensure that study quality is maintained and further developed in a good and uniform manner at the institution.
  • The Education Committee decides on and initiates initiatives related to study quality within the University’s prioritised areas and frames provided by the Board/Rector through the allocation of budget.
  • The Education Committee shall advise the Rector in cases pertaining to accreditation of programme plans for new study programmes comprising more than 30 ECTS credits.
  • The Education Committee shall ensure that the quality assurance of the institution and its quality assurance system are followed up and further developed in a good and responsible manner.
  • The Education Committee is to process the annual report on study quality assurance (‘the Study Quality Report’) prior to its being submitted to the University’s Board.
  • The Education Committee constitutes a quorum when more than half its members are present and voting. This includes substitutes in cases where permanent representatives are unable to attend.
Learning Environment Committee
  • The Learning Environment Committee shall actively participate in the planning of the University’s work on developing an inclusive, diverse and universally shaped learning environment (driving force and role of supplier of premises).
  • Shall contribute to the Board’s facilitating good student environment conditions and cooperating to improve student welfare across all study locations in cooperation with the Student Welfare Organisation.
  • Shall be involved in all overall surveys and evaluations relating to the students’ total learning environment.
Faculty-wise Education Committees
  • Shall be a driving force for study quality assurance at the Faculties and shall be the Faculties’ operative tool in quality assurance and control of the Faculties’ teaching activities.
  • Shall process new study plans, preliminary as well as final academic portfolio, evaluations and quality reports.