Quality system for education

Umeå University has a cohesive quality system for education, integrated into the university's yearly cycle. The quality system includes education at all levels and is based on nine activities that aim to support, develop and make visible how we at Umeå University work with quality in our educations.

Umeå University's webpage about the quality system (page in Swedish only)

Umeå University's quality system for education (regulation)

Below you will find a description of how the Faculty of Science and Technology works with the university's quality system for education. (Page under construction)

Activity 1: Student surveys

Umeå University has four centrally initiated surveys aimed at students and doctoral students: The Beginner's Survey and the Study Barometer for undergraduate students, as well as the Employee Survey and the Graduation Survey for doctoral students.

Education at undergraduate and advanced level

The Beginners Survey and the Study Barometer are conducted alternately every autumn. The former is aimed at students who begin their studies in the autumn semester. The latter is aimed at programme students who are in the middle of their education.

At the Faculty of Science and Technology, the results from the Beginners Survey and the Study Barometer are broken down to programme and department level and sent to programme directors/programme councils and directors of studies. The results are commented on in the programmes' VB/VP (see also Activity 6) and form the basis for ongoing dialogues in various forums and between faculty management and programme councils/departments. In addition, analyzes and compilations are made at faculty and university-wide level.

The Faculty Office is responsible for the faculty's handling of the Beginners Survey and the Study Barometer.

Previous surveys (page in Swedish)

Activity 2: Student Union letter

The Student Union letter is compiled jointly by the student unions every three years and covers education at all levels. Through the Student Union Letter, student unions are given the opportunity to express views on educational activities and take an active part in the work of further developing the educational activities.

At the Faculty of Science and Technology, the Education Committee and the Committee for PhD studies, in consultation with the Umeå Science and Technology Union, NTK, are responsible for highlighting issues of special relevance to the faculty. In consultation with the faculty management and relevant committees, priority is given to areas in need of development. Based on this, continuous dialogues are conducted in various forums between faculty management, program directors/departments and NTK. Development work and any direct measures are commented on in the programme's, departments and faculties' VB/VP and are included in operational dialogues.

The responsibility for the faculty's work with the Student Union letter rests with the deputy dean with responsibility for education at the undergraduate and advanced level.

Student union letter 2013: after a review of the letter and discussions with the student union and departments, priority was given to:

• Strengthen knowledge regarding the regulations regarding the schedule and syllabus,
• Clarify the current regulations for dissertations (and degree projects),
• Part-divided essay courses and degree projects,
• Ensure that course evaluations are carried out and feedback given to the students.

Student union letter 2016: after a review of the letter and discussions with the student union and departments, priority was given to:

• Course evaluation
• Response
• Course syllabuses
• Pedagogical competence development for doctoral students

Student Union Letter 2019: Prioritization takes place in Spring 2020.

Student union letters (page in Swedish)

Activity 3: Course evaluation

Course evaluation from students on a course together with views and reflections from teachers and staff form the basis for course evaluation. The course evaluation also gives the students the opportunity to reflect on their own learning process and actively take part in the work of developing the course.

A course evaluation must address the course's content and prerequisites, and describe how learning activities and examining elements provide prerequisites for the student to achieve the expected study results. For courses at doctoral level that do not have a syllabus, the evaluation is related to the national degree objectives that are relevant in the course.

Based on the central regulations, the Faculty of Science and Technology has developed its own computerized system for compiling course evaluations. The departments are responsible for ensuring that each course is evaluated and that a compilation, a so-called course report, is reported in the course report system. The course reports are approved by the responsible teacher and students before they become public. Anyone with a Umu-ID  can read published course reports.

Log in to the course report system

Activity 4: Programme evaluation

Students who study a programme at the undergraduate and advanced level must be given opportunities to present their views on the education as a whole (for doctoral education, see Activity 6). The purpose of the programme evaluations is that they should contribute to the development of the educations.

Based on the quality system, the Faculty of Science and Technology will develop a procedure for course and programme evaluation during 2020.

Compilation and analysis of the programme evaluations is done in Activity 6: Activity report and operational plan for educational programmes and research subjects.

Activity 5: Securing national qualitative degree targets

Education at undergraduate and advanced level

Umeå University must be able to show how students with a granted degree at undergraduate and advanced level have achieved national degree targets. For each degree, a matrix is therefore drawn up that shows how the national degree targets are achieved through different course objectives (expressed as FSR). The matrix also includes five of the perspectives to be commented on in VB/VP.

Compilation and analysis of the national degree targets is made in Activity 6, Activity report and operational plan for education programmes.

Securing national degree targets at undergraduate and advanced level as well as appendices:

Doctoral education

Degree objectives for doctoral education are followed up through the individual study plan and through the routines that apply to the dissertation. The degree objective matrix forms a basis for the postgraduate subject's VB/VP (see Activity 6).

Securing national qualitative degree targets for doctoral education (document in Swedish)

Securing national degree targets at doctoral education level at annual follow-up of ISP (ISP follow-up form) (document in Swedish)

Instructions for completing goal fulfillment at annual follow-up of ISP (document in Swedish)

Activity 6: Annual report and operational plan for educational programmes and research subjects

The annual report summarizes and analyzes the information and data generated in activity 1-5 and activity 7. This also includes follow-up of previous years' annual report and operational plan.

Based on the annual report, the operational plan for planned development work regarding educational programmes and research subjects is reported.

Education at undergraduate and advanced level

VB and VP for educational programmes at the undergraduate and advanced level aim to provide follow-up and continued quality development. Follow-up of VB / VP is done through feedback conversations between faculty management, faculty directors of studies and programme directors.

Template for VB/VP for education programmes at undergraduate and advanced level

Doctoral education

For research subjects, an activity report and activity plan are prepared in accordance with the faculty's activity cycle. Every three years, Quality Requirements for education programmes and main areas for education must be given special consideration.

Read Umeå University's Quality System for Education in its entirety (page in Swedish

Translation, annual report and operational plan for third cycle studies subject area

Activity 7: Educational evaluation through peer review

Education at undergraduate and advanced level

The purpose of the peer review is to help ensure the quality of the education's content and implementation and provide support for quality development. The evaluation is based on the study plan, degree description, the study programme's VB/VP and other things that the faculty instructs. The dean appoints reviewers after consultation with the relevant programme director. Each education programme is evaluated every six years.

At the Faculty of Science and Technology, the peer reviewer is normally not employed at Umeå University. The examiner summarizes his assessment and his recommendations in a report in accordance with the faculty's instructions. In the review, both identified strengths and development areas must be highlighted. Based on the report, the programme director and programme council produce a development plan, which forms a basis for dialogue with the faculty management.

The Faculty of Science and Technology evaluated all educational programmes with external peer review in 2018.

Schedule for collegial external review of education programs at undergraduate and advanced level.

Doctoral education

The Faculty Board initiates at least every six years a collegial external review of research subjects. The basis for the review consists of the last four activity reports, the student union letter, the general study plan for the research subject, three randomly selected individual study plans and interviews with representatives of the education and doctoral students attending the education. The analysis is carried out by an expert in the field of science or the person responsible for doctoral education, but at least outside the department.

Schedule for collegial external review of research subjects (document in Swedish)

Procedure for collegial external review, FS 1.1-2154-19 (document in Swedish)

Instructions for experts when reviewing research subject, FS 1.6.2-2155-19 (document in Swedish)

Schedule for collegial external review of mathematics and mathematical statistics, FS 1.6.2-39-20 (document in Swedish)

Schedule for external peer review of the postgraduate subjects ecology, environmental science and natural geography 2021 (document in Swedish)

Activity 8: Faculty audit

The faculty audit focuses on how a faculty, Umeå School of Education or a selected administrative unit organizes, supports and develops quality in education and aims, based on collegial views and recommendations, to develop the quality work.

The university management, in consultation with USR and FOSTRA, appoints an audit group. This includes representatives of various functions within the university, including students. External representatives can also be included in the group.

Standing themes for the audit:

• Organization of and support to education and doctoral education
• The university's quality work for education and doctoral education

Additional themes can be determined in consultation with the relevant activities.

The audit group conducts group discussions (site visits) with representatives of different staff categories and students, and on this basis writes a report. This summarizes what has emerged in the conversations and after reviewing various documents. The focus is on identifying strengths and areas for development and improvement. The faculty management's analysis of the audit report and the measures planned are commented on in the faculty's VB/VP and form the basis for operational dialogues.

The faculty of Science and Technology was audited in 2016.

Audit reports (page in Swedish)

Activity 9: Follow-up and evaluation of the quality system

Umeå University's quality system undergoes external review through UKÄ's educational evaluations, thematic evaluations and the reviews of the university's quality assurance work. There is a special procedure for Umeå University's internal process at UKÄ's educational evaluations.

Link to Procedure for External Educational Evaluations (UKÄ)

In addition, annual dialogues are held with a focus on quality issues between university management and faculties and student unions.

contact information

Staffan Schedin,
Faculty director of studies
Phone: +46 90 786 74 87
Email: staffan@schedin@umu.se

CONTACT INFORMATION

Susanne Vikström,
faculty director of studies
Phone: 090-786 94 71
Email: susanne.vikstrom@umu.se

CONTACT INFORMATION

Frankie Ekerholm,
Faculty Office coordinator
Phone: 090-786 74 38
E-mail: frankie.ekerholm@umu.se

Anna-Lena Lindskog
6/8/2021