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The PROFFORMANCE consortium, led by the Ministry for Innovation and Technology in Hungary together with ACA’s member – Tempus Public Foundation (TPF) – published the final report of the benchmarking survey conducted in November 2020 among 156 higher education institutions of its six partner countries (Austria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Georgia, Hungary, Serbia). The aim of the survey was to map institutional approaches to quality enhancement and support of teaching and learning (T&L), regarding assessment systems, staff development and teacher training practices.
Results of the survey indicate that more than 83% of respondents possess a dedicated strategy for the quality of T&L, out of which 72% have a specific T&L approach. However, only 39% of the respondents report some influence of national or European requirements on their T&L approaches. More than 87% of the respondents reported that there was a dedicated framework for the evaluation and assessment of academic staff.
The most common practice to assess T&L quality at HEIs is student evaluation of university professors’ performance. However, only one third of the institutions reported that students may benefit from this practice. The report furthermore highlighted several shortages of effective assessment systems, such as low response rate, poorly defined processes, lack of consequences or lack of communication of results and measures taken.
Furthermore, pedagogical skills and competences are assessed at less than half of the HEIs at entry-level and at one-third of HEIs for promotion. Only 50% of respondents indicated that there is a staff development framework in place, which are mainly specific courses, trainings or workshops. Lack of time and motivation and the high workload have been mentioned as the most hindering factors of staff development.
Call for applications for the International Higher Education Teacher Award
On a related note, the PROFFORMANCE consortium has also published a call for applications for the International Higher Education Teacher Award. The purpose of this Award is to identify, acknowledge and recognise excellent teaching practices and to provide opportunities not only for sharing and exchanging best examples, but also to encourage cooperation between the higher education institutions in the European Higher Education Area. All teaching staff at HEIs in the consortium’s countries are eligible to apply by 15 December 2021 at the following call for applications link.