Quality Assurance Department

Welcome to the Quality Assurance & Accreditation Department (QAAD)

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Quality Assurance and Accreditation Department (QAAD) is central to quality assurance arrangements of all academic and administrative operations and standards at Arab Open University. QAAD is located at the HQ-Kuwait and oversees the quality assurance arrangements at its eight Branches through the established Quality Assurance Units. QAAD also ensures that quality assurance arrangements at AOU meet the OU-UK and the local higher education standards.

Vision

Employing fit for purpose quality assurance measures to ensure highest quality of education at AOU that is compatible and competitive with international standards.

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Mission

To endeavor for the achievement of the highest possible international standards of education and research at AOU by:

a) To ensure that effective QA policies and procedures are in place

b) Revisiting and reviewing the academic & nonacademic processes

c) Reviewing measures for the enhancement of the University provisions

d) Collaboration with national and international Quality Assurance bodies.

 


QA Strategy

The quality assurance strategy is a statement of the University’s commitment to assuring quality of its services to students and staff. It is in congruence with the larger institutional strategic plan that places pronounced emphasis on validation of its academic programmes with quality assurance agencies in Branch countries, towards widening the learning and teaching opportunities. It provides goals and objectives for implementing the University Policies and procedures and comprises of systems and mechanisms that contribute to quality enhancement.

Strategic Aims:

• To develop a robust Quality Assurance system governing the operational academic and administrative functions of AOU.

• To enable the University to achieve the necessary local, OUVP and any other international recognition and accreditation for all its branches

• To ensure consistency of operation in the implementation of University Rules and Regulations and maintenance of AOU standards across all AOU branches.

• To support faculty initiatives which are likely to enhance academic standards, student learning experience and staff development.

• To assure that AOU student support strategies is fully implemented. 

• To support development of internal procedures for periodic peer review, courses / programme review and internal self –assessment processes.

• To establish professional links with regional and international quality assurance agencies to incorporate internationally accepted QA standards.

• To revisit the structure and responsibilities of the University committees at both strategic and branch level with a view to developing effective implementation strategies.


Quality Assurance & Accreditation Department Organizational Structure (QAAD)

The Director is the head of the Quality Assurance and Accreditation Department and is responsible for ensuring that the Department takes ownership of embedding quality assurance standards across academic and administrative processes. The Director- QAAD along with the respective Branch Director is responsible for nominating Quality Assurance coordinators at the Branches for overseeing the implementation of all quality assurance processes and standards at the Branch Level. At the Branch level the Quality Assurance Units (QAU) are headed by the Quality Assurance Coordinators who oversee all aspects of quality assurance issues. 


Quality Assurance Arrangements at AOU

Partnership Arrangements:  The Quality Assurance Arrangements at AOU involve working in close partnership with the partnering institution Open University –UK and other local bodies in each of the host countries. The QAAD along with the QAUs in the host countries ensure that all quality assurance standards are met with and arrangements are in place for smooth functioning of all academic programmes. It involves all activities that lead towards institutional approval and programme validation. 

Quality Assurance & Enhancement Mechanisms

The notion of quality underpinning the framework adopted by AOU is of fit for purpose. The quality assurance systems and mechanisms ensure that its approaches objectively review, monitor and reflect on the efficacy and relevance of the Programmes structure and the relevant teaching and learning provisions. The Quality Assurance system ensures that the teaching and learning environment and University’s overall provision are fit for purpose. The quality assurance systems apply to all Branches and Faculties and to both academic and support staff through and cuts across the socio-political settings within which they operate. The Arab Open University’s quality assurance systems and mechanisms can be classified as internal and external quality assurance.

Internal Quality Assurance and Enhancement

Internal quality assurance mechanisms are continuous, shall be consistent with the quality assurance framework set forth in the University policies, and shall include mechanisms to assess the following areas:

• Quality of programmes and courses

• Quality of academic provisions

• Quality of academic staff

• Quality of teaching and learning experience

• Quality of student assessment: Internal moderation

• Quality of administrative and infrastructural support services

• Quality of resources and facilities

• Quality of research and community service

Regular internal reviews are conducted to ensure that the Quality Assurance strategy is implemented. Through the University Council and Central Quality Assurance Committee, AOU determines and approves any additional quality management frameworks for all Branches and Faculties that may be deemed necessary.

External Quality Assurance and Enhancement

External Quality Assurance and Enhancement mechanisms are usually based on the internal quality assurance measures and mechanisms (self-evaluation and internal monitoring procedures), to ensure that high quality standards are maintained. The following external mechanisms are periodically utilized:

• External Examiners

• Validation and Accreditation by External QA Bodies

• External Professional bodies in the Branch countries

• Local accreditation bodies in the Branch countries

• Employer and graduate feedback

Annual and Periodic Departmental Review

 The QAAD ensures that mechanisms are in place towards all annual and periodic reviews as set out in the Quality assurance strategy. The annual and periodic department reviews generate Self Evaluation document at the Institutional level and at the Branch level, Annual Monitoring Report that cover all aspects of Programme delivery, student and staff feedback, plagiarism, student appeals and complaints and all aspects of the teaching and learning environment at AOU.

Quality Assurance Arrangements at AOU

Partnership Arrangements:  The Quality Assurance Arrangements at AOU involve working in close partnership with the partnering institution Open University –UK and other local bodies in each of the host countries. The QAAD along with the QAUs in the host countries ensure that all quality assurance standards are met with and arrangements are in place for smooth functioning of all academic programmes. It involves all activities that lead towards institutional approval and programme validation. 

Quality Assurance & Enhancement Mechanisms

The notion of quality underpinning the framework adopted by AOU is of fit for purpose. The quality assurance systems and mechanisms ensure that its approaches objectively review, monitor and reflect on the efficacy and relevance of the Programmes structure and the relevant teaching and learning provisions. The Quality Assurance system ensures that the teaching and learning environment and University’s overall provision are fit for purpose. The quality assurance systems apply to all Branches and Faculties and to both academic and support staff through and cuts across the socio-political settings within which they operate. The Arab Open University’s quality assurance systems and mechanisms can be classified as internal and external quality assurance.

Internal Quality Assurance and Enhancement

Internal quality assurance mechanisms are continuous, shall be consistent with the quality assurance framework set forth in the University policies, and shall include mechanisms to assess the following areas:

• Quality of programmes and courses

• Quality of academic provisions

• Quality of academic staff

• Quality of teaching and learning experience

• Quality of student assessment: Internal moderation

• Quality of administrative and infrastructural support services

• Quality of resources and facilities

• Quality of research and community service

Regular internal reviews are conducted to ensure that the Quality Assurance strategy is implemented. Through the University Council and Central Quality Assurance Committee, AOU determines and approves any additional quality management frameworks for all Branches and Faculties that may be deemed necessary.

External Quality Assurance and Enhancement

External Quality Assurance and Enhancement mechanisms are usually based on the internal quality assurance measures and mechanisms (self-evaluation and internal monitoring procedures), to ensure that high quality standards are maintained. The following external mechanisms are periodically utilized:

• External Examiners

• Validation and Accreditation by External QA Bodies

• External Professional bodies in the Branch countries

• Local accreditation bodies in the Branch countries

• Employer and graduate feedback

Annual and Periodic Departmental Review

 The QAAD ensures that mechanisms are in place towards all annual and periodic reviews as set out in the Quality assurance strategy. The annual and periodic department reviews generate Self Evaluation document at the Institutional level and at the Branch level, Annual Monitoring Report that cover all aspects of Programme delivery, student and staff feedback, plagiarism, student appeals and complaints and all aspects of the teaching and learning environment at AOU.   


Quality Assurance Memberships

AOU - QAAD is member of The Association of Quality Assurance Agencies of the Islamic World (AQAAIW) was established in 2011.  AQAAIW has the following objectives:

To enhance the capacity of quality assurance agencies in countries of the Islamic World; 

To facilitate collaboration and exchanges of best practices, experiences and expertise among quality assurance agencies of countries of the Islamic World; and 

To encourage cooperation with regional and international quality assurance organizations.


Quality Assurance News

3rd Institutional Revalidation and Programme Validation is currently on.

Workshop on Quality Assurance Processes and system for administrative staff at HQ

Workshop on preparation for Revalidation – Bahrain Branch.

 


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contactus  Quality Assurance & Accreditation Department, Arab Open Universty., P. O. BOX: 3222 AL-Safat 13033. Kuwait

Employing fit for purpose quality assurance measures to ensure highest quality of education at AOU that is compatible and competitive withinternational standards.