Cross-border Quality Assurance - Policy and Guidelines
The ESG Framework
CYQAA fully acknowledges that the ESG provide a framework for all QA activities in the EHEA, and that they may be implemented in different ways in different contexts. For this reason, specific adaptations might be required based on the legal framework and the education system’s traditions and structure in the higher education setting where cross-border QA will be carried out. Any alterations to the agency’s procedures remain in line with the ESG and are made publicly available.
Preparing for cross-border QA
A preliminary meeting between CYQAA and the institution ensures a shared understanding of the national and institutional context and the forthcoming QA process.
A formal agreement is signed between the two parties, outlining the aims of the procedure and responsibilities of all parties.
Conducting due diligence and gathering further background information supports successful cross-border QA. This may include CYQAA contacting the local QA agency to acquire information of previous external QA reports and decisions concerning the institution.
Expert selection and Training for cross-border QA
CYQAA ensures the transparent and appropriate selection and training of its external evaluation experts. Specific training and briefing is particularly important if they are working in an unfamiliar context.
The institution’s representatives may participate in such trainings and briefings, conducted by CYQAA, so that they may also brief external evaluation experts on relevant contextual issues.
The institution, CYQAA and the external evaluation experts are sensitive to cultural and contextual differences.
The procedure for cross-border QA:
The practicalities of cross-border QA set out in the formal agreement between both parties which may include aspects such as language considerations and specificities of the site visit(s).
CYQAA conducts its external evaluation procedures in English and the working language of its external evaluation committees is English.
For this reason the institution should consider the time and resources required to provide, if necessary, translations of relevant documents and interpretation during the site visit(s). This is clarified in advance, during the arrangements for the site visit(s) and it is duly stated in the formal agreement between the two parties.
Communication between CYQAA and the institution should address various issues, which may include, in addition to language aspects, the length of the site visit(s), time allocated for interviews, the selection of interviewees and matters of reporting.
Formal Recognition Process of cross-border QA decision:
CYQAA and the institution take into account any additional steps necessary for the formal recognition by the relevant national bodies of any decision following the completion of a cross-border QA procedure that is part of national mandatory QA. This may not be necessary in all settings.
Any national requirements or criteria should be addressed in the structuring and contents of the report to ensure its recognition if the process is part of the national mandatory QA.CYQAA ensures the publication of and access to the full report.
CYQAA charges the Higher Education institution fees to meet the full costs of Cross-Border QA.
The fees are as follows:
- For programmes of study of a duration of one (1) academic year on a full-time basis or of an equivalent duration on a part-time basis at Certificate level, €1.800.
- For programmes of study of a duration of two (2) academic years on a full-time basis or of an equivalent duration on a part-time basis at Diploma level, €2.500.
- For programmes of study of a duration of three (3) academic years on a full-time basis or of an equivalent duration on a part-time basis at Higher Diploma level, €4.000.
- For programmes of study of a duration of four (4) academic years on a full-time basis or of an equivalent duration on a part-time basis at Degree level (Bachelors), €5.500.
- For postgraduate Masters level programmes, €7.000.
- For postgraduate programmes of study at Ph.D. level, €8.500.
- Institutional Evaluation of universities €17.000 per Department.
- Departmental Evaluation of Universities €13.500 per Department.
- Institutional Evaluation of other higher education institutions, €10.000.
- Evaluation –Accreditation of a programme of study of a Higher Education Institution (Bachelors) degree, offered by the franchise method at an educational establishment of another state €8.000.
- Evaluation-Accreditation of a programme of study at Masters level which is offered through the franchise method in an educational establishment in another member state €10.000.
- Evaluation-Accreditation of a programme of study offered by a Higher Education Institution at Doctorate level, through the franchise method in an educational establishment in another member state €12.000.
The total fee is payable by higher education institution to CYQAA on signature of the contract.
The above include the expert fees, travel and subsistence costs for experts, a fee for the coordination of the cross-border QA, and CYQAA administrative overhead.
Additionally, institutions cover travel, per-diem and accommodation expenses, charged as real costs, for two CYQAA officers. Per-diem may vary depending on the location of the higher education institution and will be estimated according to the directives of the Cyprus Ministry of Finance.
Travel and subsistence costs for experts may also be increased depending on the location of the institution and thus an additional cost may be incurred.
These costs are payable by the higher education institution to CYQAA as soon as they are incurred.