The Quality System at Wittenborg University
Wittenborg University of Applied Science is officially recognised by the Dutch government, and falls under national quality assurance controls.
Its bachelor's degree programmes are accredited by the Dutch government (NVAO); the university is committed to ensuring all its courses meet accreditation criteria.
From 2009, the institute has begun to develop a system called Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA), which is aimed at integrating a quality system into all processes, including programme development.
In 2012, Wittenborg completed FIBAA (German, Austrian & Swiss) accreditation processes for its Bachelor IBA programmes, and NVAO (re-) accreditation for its IBA Bachelor programmes.
In 2011 the university received validation for joint delivery of MSc programmes with the University of Brighton, which falls under the UK’s QAA accreditation system.
During the accreditation processes, Wittenborg’s bachelor's programme has also undergone a peer-review through its NRTO partnership, carried out by a colleague from Webster University Leiden and its colleagues at the School of Service Management and Sport at the University of Brighton, Eastbourne Campus. NRTO membership is seen as an important factor in the Quality System at Wittenborg.
Alongside student and teacher evaluation, peer review by partner institutions and evaluation by the professional field, the accreditation process itself is seen as part of the quality system, and not just an end result.
Wittenborg has a systematic approach to its quality flow and this is implemented in the quality control of programme development and programme operations.The system is described in the Quality System Handbook. A Quality Manager is appointed by the Wittenborg University Executive to oversee the implementation and maintenance and improvement of the Quality System. The Quality Manager reports to the Executive who in turn is required to report to the University Advisory Board. Wittenborg is obligated to submit a yearly report regarding critical self-reflection on quality and standards to the Minister of Education.
A Quality Handbook
On recommendation of FIBAA (during the Bachelor IBA accreditation in 2012) the Quality Handbook has been published in a clearer and more transparent manner that allows a systematic approach to be shown and quality targets have been defined. It is available online for staff and students and is updated by an internship student on a half-yearly schedule.
The departments and people responsible for Quality Management are clearly defined, and these are linked to the organisation structure and with regard to the development and maintenance of the programme, the Evaluation Cycle of the procedures can be seen here.