On Tuesday, November 21st, more than 160 representatives from Higher Education institutions across Norway met at Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences (HiOA) to discuss alignment in educational programs, at the invitation from the Ministry of Education and Research.
The conference was a follow-up of the recent White paper “Quality Culture in Higher Education” (Melding.St. 16 (2016-2017) – Kultur for kvalitet i høyere utdanning).
In his welcome speech, Curt Rice, rector at HiOA, challenged our understanding of quality, and made the point that quality includes variation – what he termed ‘desired variation’ (ønsket variasjon). Variation in teaching, in learning practices and in assessment, not only copying what is already good (best practice), but heading towards next practice.
After Rice’s welcome speech, the conference was officially opened by the Minister of Education and Research, Henrik Asheim, followed by an introductory by Øystein Lund, Director of NOKUT’s Department of Quality Assurance, and professor Arild Raaheim from bioCEED. Lund described NOKUT’s policy and practice for quality assurance, whereas Raaheim followed up the challenge put forward by Rice, presenting, among other things, an example of “sustainable assessment,” assessment as learning.
Following these introductions, representatives from students’ organisations and academic staff presented and commented on several examples of good practices.
The conference was videotaped and all the presentations are available at: