LERU paper analyses importance of high-quality innovative doctoral education
LERU, the League of European Research Universities, has recently published a paper on how LERU universities develop, maintain and evaluate their high-quality culture in doctoral education.
According to the paper, it is important to focus on stimulating a rigorous research culture, rather than on mechanistic quality assurance processes. Examples are provided on how universities define expectations for doctoral education, how they set up scrutiny processes, how they use indicators to measure quality, and how they build in feedback mechanisms to enhance a quality culture.
In addition, the paper also provides a number of recommendations. According to LERU, as regards the universities themselves, the focus on a quality culture in doctoral education needs to be strongly supported by university leadership, review processes have to consider programmes as well as individual outcomes, independent expertise should be involved, the quality of the research environment as well as the quality of the output should be considered, and processes need to be transparent and information easily accessible. In addition, policy makers and funders should acknowledge, encourage and reward universities that have good quality assurance systems in place.
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