The quality assurance system at the Faculty of Archaeology
The Faculty of Archaeology has an extensive quality assurance system which aims to safeguard the quality of education and research.
The Faculty of Archaeology examines and safeguards the quality of the programme by means of a cyclic evaluation system. The unending cyclic character illustrates the aim of the whole organisation to constantly improve quality. Proceeding through this cycle in all the primary, supporting or management activities at organisation, team and individual level encourages continuous improvement. In order to approach an activity or series of activities efficiently, the PDCA cycle is consistently applied:
This step results in a plan (policy plan, action plan or improvement plan). This step might include:
- collecting and interpreting data
- identifying the actors involved
- seeking causes
- determining results, based on measures and objectives
- choosing an approach and developing an action plan.
Implement the action plan.
Evaluate the efforts and results.
Adjust the activity/activities if the results did not achieve the desired results or anchor the working method that did produce good results. Then start a new PDCA cycle aimed at continuous improvement!
Within the Faculty of Archaeology, the PDCA cycle is translated into the following steps:
Step 1. Quality definition (Plan): quality is defined as achieving the objectives as formulated in the vision of the programme. In recent years, both Leiden University and the Faculty of Archaeology have formulated goals and plans aimed at improving the quality of the Archaeology educational programme. These relate to the plans and goals adopted in the policy plan for education (2006-2008).
Step 2. Quality measurement (Do): students and staff are important sources of information within the education quality assurance system. Various measuring instruments are used to gather information from these target groups.
Step 3. Analysis (Check): separate evaluation results are analysed. Generally, subject evaluations are discussed with those concerned.
Step 4. Quality improvement (Act): the faculty aims to produce a management report (once a year) in which all the available evaluation results are summarised and provided with a conclusion and an action plan.
Step 5. Organisation: the programme director is responsible for the quality of education and the related quality assurance system. Responsibility for the development and implementation of the quality assurance system lies with the Education and Quality Assurance officer. The programme committee (OLC) plays an important role in quality control. Every year, a new schedule for subject evaluations is drawn up by the programme director, advised by the programme committee. In addition, the draft management report with associated action plan is submitted to the OLC. Provided with feedback from the OLC, the definitive report is finally submitted to the management. The quality assurance system in the Faculty of Archaeology is in line with the internal quality assurance procedure at Leiden University and the Leiden Register.