Study Quality at the Department of Psychology

Welcome to the Department of Psychology`s pages for study quality systems and evaluation results. The Department`s quality system is in line with UiO`s and the Faculty`s guidelines. Here you can find information about the system`s structure and details, and in addition look at the results of assessments and read external and internal reports which apply to study programmes and courses at the Psychology Department.

The quality system at the Department is grounded in both academic and administrative perspectives, and is developed to fulfill several requirements.

  1. Give the individual course leaders and teachers feedback on teaching, curriculum, form of exams, etc.

  2. Give the students feedback and make apparent their active participation in the formulation of the courses

  3. Aid the organization`s teaching needs, provide possibilities to learn from especially successful arrangements and  investigate circumstances related to courses which have not functioned and present suggestions for improvements.

  4. Give programme and departmental leadership good, systematic documentation on quality, both for planning and reporting purposes.

  5. Ensure the departments work with a quality transparent for employees, students and the relevant authorities.

  6. Ensure that the quality systems find good support and legitimacy among the employees at the Department.

The internal quality system at the Department rests on two main activities.

  • Annual meetings between programme leadership and student representatives.

  • Standardised periodical assessments which are conducted on each course as needed and with a maximum of four year intervals.

The quality system should ensure that the studies offered and study related operations at the Department are carried out in a defensible way by acquiring systematic knowledge on strong and weak sides of our operations. This knowledge should in turn be used as the basis for any changes in the studies offered and with questions of disposition of resources. Participants in the quality system are all employees and students at the Department.

Methods

The question form is standardised for the professional-, bachelor- and masters programmes. We have developed this through several pilot surveys and in conferral with academic employees at the Department.

Some questions concern professional practice courses and are only used with these courses, while other questions are not relevant to practice courses.

  • In the question form we have incorporated the knowledge scales as they are presented in the course descriptions

  • We have also made a English version of the question form for English language courses in the masters programme

The question form shall fulfill several needs. It should be answered quickly and cover the following subjects with in total approx. 20 questions:

  • How the semester as a whole has functioned

  • Benefits of the actual course

  • Students own contributions on the course

  • Curriculum

  • Teaching

  • Structure of exams

  • Framework and practice

The form should be as similar as possible across study programmes, theory and practice, and it should be possible to see if courses stand out in a positive or negative way. The answers on the question forms are used to steadily develop a statistical norm as new courses are compared. In the spring of 2010 there where in total 60 courses in the statistical norm.

If the survey shall have any meaning it is important with a high answer percent, so that we can reduce sources of error based on some people having stronger opinions than others and thus being more likely to respond. Therefore we have worked to achieve the highest possible number of responses. The attached data matrix shows that the response percent is generally very high (between 70 and 100%), with exception of the bachelor courses at the introduction level, which are somewhat lower.

Explanation of the evaluation results

The questions are presented with alternatives from 1 to 7, where the extremes are described with text. Around fourteen questions have 7 as the best score (after re-encoding for some), while the rest have 4 as the best score.

To identify potential deviations in positive or negative ways standard deviation is used such: the colour orange means the average score is at least one standard deviation weaker than the norm (i.e. 16% of the selection). Green means that the average score is at least one standard deviation better than the norm (16%). These questions are totaled and the sum gives a simple indication of the courses place compared with other courses.

In addition there are 6 blue EXCEPTION-questions: Best score= 4.0. Scores at least one standard deviation over or below 4 are coloured blue and indicate a need for changes. In this way it is easy to identify deviating scores.

Following up the results

The results from the assessments are made available for course leaders, the programme leadership, the Department leadership and the students. The results are also made public here.

Course leaders receive a report with response distribution and supplementary comments from the students on their respective courses for further planning, and deviating scores are emphasized. The programme committees receive the results from the final assessment. The deviating scores are noted, commentated and discussed as required. Follow-up based on the results from the course evaluation is reported and highlighted in the Study Quality reports to the Department. Courses with deviating scores, where needs for large changes were identified, and the changes made, will be freshly evaluated the next time the course is given.

Published Nov. 5, 2012 9:58 AM - Last modified Nov. 19, 2015 12:03 AM