Towards a national system of teaching qualifications in higher education in The Netherlands

H. van Keulen, J. van Alst, R. de Jong, A. Halma

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractOther research output

Abstract

2005 6th Conference of the International Consortium for Educational Development Enhancing Academic Development Practice: International Perspectives 1. Contact Name: Hanno van Keulen 2. Title: Dr 3. Institution(s): Utrecht University 4. Department: IVLOS Institute of Education 5. Address for correspondence: PO Box 80127 6. Country: The Netherlands 7. Postcode/Zipcode: 3508 TC Utrecht 8. Telephone: +31 30 253 1718 (office) / +31 6 5213 8991 (GSM) 9. Email: [email protected] 10. Title and authors of other proposals in which you are involved: none 1. Session title: Towards a national system of teaching qualifications in Higher Education in The Netherlands 2. Conference theme Informing and responding to policy 3. Session Objectives/Learning Outcomes 1) A better understanding of how to design and approach consensus on a teaching qualification system with regard to: • Content (i.c. the teaching competencies); • Assessment (e.g. portfolio assessment) • Pathway (e.g. compulsory teacher training or more personalised approaches) 2) A better understanding of how to implement such a qualification system with regard to: • building a learning culture within institutions and departments; • influencing and engaging institutional and governmental policies and leaders; • respecting and building on local autonomous practices while maintaining a shared framework; 4. Intended audience Institutional management Educational consultants Staff developers Researchers on staff & educational development 5. Session Activities I would like to start with a short introduction into the current situation in The Netherlands (as outline below in the abstract), and then I would invite the audience to come up with suggestions informed by experience, research and theory. I suppose we in The Netherlands take a middle position: some countries, notably the UK, already have a national qualification system whereas many other countries are just opening up for this issue and want to learn how to start. My personal aim (and in this respect I represent the Dutch Network CRWO that is doing its best to influence the establishment of a national system) is to learn as much as possible from other experiences with the introduction and implementation of a qualification system: what are key factors and who are key stakeholders, both with regard to what to implement as to the process? I hope there will be some others who can benefit from discussing our experiences. I particularly want to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of compulsory training systems compared to systems based on the (direct or portfolio-based) assessment of capabilities at qualification level. And I would like to discuss the amount of local autonomy that would be beneficial to the process. 6. Abstract (revised version) Can and should we establish a nation-wide basic teaching qualification system in research-intensive universities? This workshop will discuss three themes: 1) Is it wise and necessary to establish a teaching qualification system in research-intensive universities? Or will this repel excellent researchers? If it is wise, which arguments will convince such stakeholders as vice chancellors, Faculty management and the staff? 2) If a basic teaching qualification system is to be established, should this be government driven and embedded in legislation, or is self-regulation between universities preferable, or should each university have its own system? Which are strategies to promote either of these goals? 3) Presume agreement on establishing a basic teaching qualification system, should this be based on (compulsory) training or on assessment of performance (portfolio model)? Participants are invited to contribute their experiences. In order to structure the interaction we will discuss some research findings and focus on the current situation in the Netherlands. Here, all teachers on all levels (primary, secondary, higher vocational) need teaching qualifications, except those who teach at (research) universities. In 1996 however, Utrecht University established a teaching qualification system: all staff need to have a Basic Teaching Qualification in order to get tenure. Essentially, this is a portfolio system: staff discuss their capabilities and document their performance; their portfolio is assessed. There is no compulsory training, although many staff development courses are provided. It is difficult to measure the effect of this policy on the quality of teaching or the quality and quantity of student learning, but there is some (circumstantial) evidence that the approach is successful: • national surveys on student satisfaction show higher and increasing satisfaction with teacher skills at Utrecht when compared with other universities; • the market share of Utrecht University is increasing; • staff satisfaction with teaching is increasing; • Utrecht consolidates its strong position as a research university; • in recent years, other universities started to copy the system. Government is under student pressure to give higher priority to the quality of teaching and is pondering upon legislation. Currently, vice-chancellors of all Dutch universities are discussing the implementation of a teaching qualification system; they reject legislation in favour of self-regulation. 7. Author(s) biography Dr Hanno van Keulen is researcher, trainer and consultant in higher education at IVLOS Institute of Education of Utrecht University, The Netherlands. He is a Board Member of the Dutch national network on Staff & Educational Develoment (CRWO) and represents CRWO in the ICED Board. He is editor of the Dutch journal Onderzoek van Onderwijs (Research in Education). Drs José van Alst is consultant, trainer and coach in higher education at IOWO – consultants in policy, organization and education of Radboud University, The Netherlands. Currently she is engaged in projects on staff development and quality assurance. She is member of the taskforce working towards agreement on a teaching qualification system among Dutch universities. Drs Riekje de Jong is consultant, trainer and coach in higher education at IOWO – consultants in policy, organization and education of Radboud University, The Netherlands. At this university she initiated compulsory training for junior teachers and portfolio assessment on basic and elaborated teaching qualifications. She is member of the taskforce working towards agreement on a teaching qualification system among Dutch universities. Drs Age Halma is senior HRM-officer at Utrecht University and responsible for staff development. At this university he is programme manager of the Center of Excellence in University Teaching, and of the Basic & Senior Teaching Qualification programmes. 8. References Gerritsen, R. J., R. d. Jong, et al. (2004). "Toetsen van docentcompetenties: professionaliseringsbeleid voor docenten." TH&MA 2004(5): 53-61. Keesen, F. (2005). "Onderwijsbeleid in een researchuniversiteit." TH&MA 2005(5): 9-15. Keesen, F., T. Wubbels, et al. (1996). "Preparing university teachers in The Netherlands: Issues and trends." International Journal for Academic Development 1(2): 8-16. Pilot, A. (2005). The teacher as a crucial factor in curriculum innovations. AERA 2005, Montreal (CN). Prebble, T., H. Hargraves, et al. (2004). Impact of student support services and academic development programmes on student outcomes in undergraduate tertiary study: a synthesis of the research. New Zealand: Ministry of Education. Trowler, P. and R. Bamber (2005). "Compulsory higher education teacher training: Joined-up policies, institutional architectures and enhancement cultures." International Journal for Academic Development 10(2): 79-93.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages268-270
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jun 2006
Event6th International Conference of the International Consortium for Educational Development - Sheffield
Duration: 11 Jun 200614 Jun 2006

Conference

Conference6th International Conference of the International Consortium for Educational Development
CitySheffield
Period11/06/0614/06/06

Cite this