Workshop 15: Quality assurance across the disciplines: University College Roosevelt (UCR)


Ernestine Lahey and Leo de Wit, University College Roosevelt


Characteristics University College Roosevelt

  • liberal arts and sciences university (honors) college
  • stand-alone in Middelburg, linked to Utrecht University
  • small-scale (600 students maximum)
  • small class sizes (maximum 25 students)
  • emphasis on highly interactive teaching methods
  • system of continuous assessment
  • Approx 32 distinct disciplines spread over four departments: Arts & Humanities, Science, Social Science, Academic Core


How we work

  • Small-scale: we all know each other and we all teach
  • Our faculty has good, committed teachers, and we treat them as such
  • Carefully designed division of responsibilities: Director of Education is responsible, Board of Examiners checks
  • Ernestine and Leo regularly exchange ideas and share information:
  • Board of Examiners regulations and annual report
  • Academic Rules and Procedures
  • Board of Studies agenda, minutes and policy documents
  • Individual student cases (grey areas)
  • Procedures for checking quality of assessment


Some Pros and Cons of this model


  • BoE and DoE/BoS know each other, work closely, exchange information
  • Small-scale: everyone knows everyone else
  • Continuous assessment = many and varied measures of students’ knowledge and skills
  • Many disciplines = a broad and flexible program for our students


  • Could be perceived as threatening to independence of BoE?
  • BoE must act objectively
  • Archiving and evaluating for quality; grade appeals; oral assessments (e.g. presentations)
  • BoE may lack discipline-specific knowledge


In small groups, the the following questions were discussed

  • How are oral assessments (e.g. presentations and oral exams) documented/archived? How are they evaluated for quality?
  • Class participation grades: if grades are awarded for participation, does the Board of Examiners have a procedure for checking that this is done consistently and correctly?
  • Archiving: what system for archiving assessments is used in your faculty? What is archived (e.g. finished student work? finished student work with instructor feedback? assignment instructions and answer keys?) Is student work ever returned to the student? If not, how do students receive feedback on their work?
  • Grade appeals: In your faculty, can students appeal grades for individual assessments, or only the final grade? What motivates this choice?
  • How would you characterize the relationship in your department/faculty/program between the Board of Examiners and the Director of Education?