Universiteit Leiden

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Site-visit for the Institute of Public Administration and its programmes

On Thursday 30 November and Friday 1 December the site-visit took place for the programs BSc Public Administration, MSc Public Administration, MSc Management of the Public Sector and MSc Crisis and Security Management. The programmes are being assessed as part of the Public Administration cluster assessment for reaccreditation in 2018.

The Accreditation Proces

University programmes are assessed on their quality every six years. This is done by the Accreditation Organisation of the Netherlands and Flanders (NVAO). The so-called programme accreditation is normally very comprehensive, evaluating, as it does, all kinds of things that affect the university as a whole. Programmes in the Netherlands are predominantly accredited in what are called clusters. These are groups of programmes whose curriculum content is closely related. He great advantage of these ‘cluster assessment procedures’ is that the panel will have visited several programmes, meaning that they are in a good position to gain a full picture of the sector.

There are three steps to accreditation. Step 1 in the accreditation process is self- assessment. The programme provides its own answers to the three central questions: What is the purpose of the programme? How will the programma achieve this? Are these objectives being attained? The second step on the path to accreditation is the visit by the panel of experts, the ‘assessment procedure’. The panel then writes the assessment report. This is done based on the visit and the self-assessment. The panel assesses the programme and gives it a score of ‘excellent’, ‘good’, ‘satisfactory’ or ‘unsatisfactory’.

The visiting committee consisted of: Tony Bovaird (University of Birmingham, UK), Adrian Ritz (University of Bern), Esther Versluis (Maastricht University), Harrie Eijkelhof (Utrecht University), Cees Vermeer (City manager Breda) and Sophie van Wijngaarden (Student MSc SEPAM). Friday afternoon was concluded with a preliminary feedback session by the committee which was positive.  The definitive scores and the report for each program will be received in a few months.

 The third and final step is the ultimate accreditation decision by NVAO based on the assessment report.