On September 15, the NAQA took part in the first bi-monthly CEENQA meeting. Suсh meetings will provide an opportunity for member agencies to present their activities, best practices, projects and discuss topics of interest.
This time the experience of two agencies was presented and discussed – the Slovenian Agency for Quality Assurance in Higher Education (SQAA) and the Higher Education Planning, Accreditation, Evaluation and Coordination Council (YÖDAK), Northern Cyprus.
The separate topic for discussion was the independence of QA agencies being a key issue in their activities. The Slovenian Agency for Quality Assurance in Higher Education is currently conducting a survey aimed at studying and analysing the independence of QA agencies in Europe. The survey covers 4 key areas of independence :
- Appointment of the Chief Executive;
- Process of preparing criteria / standards;
- Appointment of experts;
- Decision-making process.
It was emphasized that all areas should be implemented without the influence of third parties, government, stakeholders – such a requirement is laid down, in particular, in Standard 3.3 of The Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area (ESG:2015).