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2013-ECA-NVAO Seminar December

MOOCs and External Quality Assurance, held in The Hague, 10-11 December 2013

MOOCs and External Quality Assurance


On Wednesday 11th December 2013 NVAO and the European Consortium for Accreditation in higher education (ECA) are organising again a winter seminar in The Hague. This year’s theme of the seminar is MOOCs and External Quality Assurance.


NVAO offices, Parkstraat 28, The Hague, The Netherlands (travel guide).
Please fill in the online registration form.


Tuesday 10 December 2013

11.00 – 13.00 ECA Management Group

13.00 – 14.00 Lunch

14.00 – 17.30 ECA Working Groups meetings :

  • Working group 1 “Mutual recognition and joint programmes”
  • Working group 2 “Internationalisation of accreditation and QA”
  • Working group 3 “Qrossroads and information strategies”
  • Working group 4 “Mutual learning and best practices”

19.00 – 22.00 ECA dinner

Wednesday 11 December 2013

09.00 – 12.00 ECA Business meeting (Preparations for legal entity)

12.00 – 13.00 Lunch

ECA-NVAO Seminar on MOOCs and External Quality Assurance

Chair: Lucien Bollaert, Executive Board member of NVAO

13.00 – Welcome and introduction by Anne Flierman, Chair of NVAO

13.10 – ‘MOOCs: a paradigm shift in learning and quality assurance?’ by Sir John Daniel, former President & CEO of Commonwealth of Learning and Stamenka Uvalic-Trumbic, consultant of Commonwealth of Learning

14.00 – ‘MOOCs and internal quality assurance’ by Timo Kos, Director of Education and Student Affairs, Delft University of Technology and Nellie van de Griend, Delft University of Technology

14.45 – Break

Chair: Rolf Heusser, Chair of ECA

15.15 – ‘MOOCs and the consequences for external quality assurance’ by Stephen Jackson, Director of Reviews, QAA UK

16.00 – Conclusions by Rolf Heusser and Ann Demeulemeester, Vice Chair of NVAO

16.15 – Reception


NVAO was one of the founding members of ECA. In the founding treaty NVAO got the task to communicate and coordinate with other countries.


NVAO was one of the founding members of ECA. In the founding treaty NVAO got the task to communicate and coordinate with other countries. According to NVAO an organisation like ECA would provide a better insight into alternative ways of accreditation, supervision and external quality assurance. Of course, co-operation within ECA enhances the legitimacy of the Dutch and Flemish accreditation systems. Furthermore, the international recognition of the Dutch and Flemish accreditation systems would also lead to a strengthening of the international position of the higher education systems in both countries.
Mutual recognition of accreditation decisions should lead to less cross-border checks and bureaucracy; it therefore gives the institutions a better position to realise their international ambitions.

More about NVAO

Although the governments of the Netherlands and Flanders fund NVAO the organisation is totally independent in procedures, methodologies and decision-making. NVAO is responsible for an area where 22 million people live. There are over 150 higher education institutions where almost one million students are enrolled.The quality assurance system before the Bologna Declaration was signed in 1999 had a focus on programmes and was essentially an external assessment of a programme by an assessment panel (of peers). After the Bologna Declaration was signed the governements of the Netherlands and Flanders wished to increase the international transparency of its higher education. Furthermore, in the context of the new European bachelor and master qualifications a need arose to benchmark these new bachelor and master degrees.
The Netherlands and Flanders are among the most open economies in the world and in the light of the internationalisation of the labour market, the governments also wanted to internationally guarantee the quality of its higher education.
The Netherlands and Flanders therefore introduced programme accreditation and made accreditation a precondition for public funding, for the right to award officially recognised qualifications (diplomas) and for granting study finance to students (eg. grants, social services). In addition to programme accreditation, institional audits were recently introduced.
Apart from its role as an accredition organisation, the NVAO plays a proactive role in higher education issues and policies. In the international arena, the NVAO sees itself as an active member of its ‘umbrella’ organisations: globally (INQAAHE), regionally (ENQA) and topically (ECA).




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