Review of the Danish Evaluation Institute


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In the opinion of the expert panel there are several reasons for reviewing EVA’s current broad mandate. It may no longer be appropriate. Educational policy priorities seem today to differ from those that applied at the end of the 1990s when EVA was established.34 Changes have already been made in supervisory and follow-up systems in various parts of the educational sector and further adjustments are in the pipeline. Is it possible for an institute with a staff of 70 or so to generate transsectoral evaluation results – with national coverage and of high quality – within the scope of these separate supervisory and follow-up systems?

EVA’s role as the evaluator of educational quality appears today to be unclear and the independence that the Act stipulates is to characterise its undertakings is viewed by the expert panel as restricted in a number of senses.

The problem area that this broad mandate gives rise to, can be illustrated by the difficulties reported by EVA in attaining an acceptable level of coverage in all of the educational sectors. Even though EVA’s work appears to be deliberate and strategic, the impression of the panel is that the number of evaluations – and their extent – is inadequate in all sectors, with the possible exception of higher education. Focusing resources on one, or possibly two, educational sectors would offer possibilities of attaining a greater degree of coverage. At the same time this would further enhance the quality of EVA’s work.

A greater degree of coverage would also increase the impact of the evaluations in the educational sector. The inclusion of additional elements of more explicit inspection in the evaluations together with greater media attention would also be needed to raise the likelihood of these results leading to action by the educational institutions.

The expert panel feels that an important element is missing from EVA’s mandate. Doctoral programmes are not currently evaluated by EVA.

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