Quality Assurance in International Cooperation and Development Projects in Higher Education

  • Internationalisation of Higher Education Handbook
  • Publication date
    July 2015
  • Topics
    • European-funded programmes

Internationalisation of Higher Education Handbook, issue 1, 2015

Considerable funding is invested in international cooperation projects in higher education by national donors and the European Commission. This paper is addressed to practitioners and donor organisations interested in project quality assurance in international cooperation projects in higher education. Most principles and tools can, however, easily be used in other contexts as well. It gives an introduction to what constitutes quality assurance (QA) in such projects and explains why it is important to consciously include QA from the onset of the project. It aims to broaden a typically narrow understanding of QA by differentiating the four functions – planning support, advice, facilitation and control – that it should ideally serve. It describes which qualifications a quality assurance partner should ideally have in order to maximally contribute to effective and productive project management. Lastly, the paper provides an overview of QA instruments that can deliver a real added value to any international project and shows how each of them relates to the four functions of QA. This paper argues that having a competent QA partner can significantly improve the delivery of the desired results and their sustainability once a project has ended.

This article was published in Issue 1, 2015 of the Internationalisation of Higher Education, an EAIE Handbook. From 2011–2015, the EAIE was the Editor of Internationalisation of Higher Education Handbook, published by Raabe Academic Publishers (Berlin). The EAIE holds joint copyright of all 2015 articles with DUZ Verlags- und Medienhaus GmbH.

— Authors: Lukas Bischof and Patrik PunĨo

Table of contents

1. Importance of Quality Assurance in international cooperation projects in higher education 68
2. Four functions of Quality Assurance in international cooperation projects 70
2.1 Planning support: Review objectives, priorities, methodology, and planned activities 70
2.2 Advisory function: Advise project implementation and helps solve issues 72
2.3 Facilitating function: Provide tools to foster engagement, commitment and accountability 72
2.4 Controlling function: Assess products/ outcomes/sustainability/visibility 73
3. Qualification profile of a Quality Assurance partner 73
4. The CHE Consult Approach - Tools for Project Quality Assurance 74
5. Conclusion 80

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