Guidelines for the evaluation of third-cycle programmes

In the guidelines, we describe the main principles for evaluation of third-cycle programmes. You can also read about the different aspects, perspectives and assessment criteria.

Main principles for evaluation of postgraduate education

Evaluation of postgraduate education is based on third-cycle programmes in their entirety, which comprises thesis work, courses and other parts.

The method is based on the assumption that the two levels of education, licentiate degrees and doctorates, are evaluated as a single unit. The main reasons for this is that both are subject to the same requirements for quality of research and that the existing system of degree awarding at third-cycle level does not distinguish between the two levels.

This reasoning is valid for both the general and the fine arts programmes that lead to qualifications at third-cycle level.

Doctorates and fine arts doctorates have separate qualification descriptors and will be assessed using the same procedure but in relation to the respective qualification descriptor.

Aspects, perspectives and assessment criteria

  • The focus for the evaluation of third-cycle education is on the three aspect areas
  • environment, resources and area
  • design, teaching/learning and outcomes
  • follow-up, actions and feedback.

And on the three perspectives

  • student and doctoral student perspective
  • working life perspective
  • gender equality perspective.

Every aspect area is divided into several aspects, which as with the three perspectives, are examined based on the associated assessment criteria.

Programme evaluations monitor actual conditions and outcomes, e.g., that the programme meets the requirements in applicable laws and ordinances. The reviews focus on how well the follow-up, actions and feedback processes contribute to ensuring and improving quality in the reviewed programmes in a systematic way. The reviews also contribute to improving the HEIs’ quality since the assessors provide feedback in their reports on both identified good examples and areas in need of improvement.