The University of Jyväskylä was the first university to go through the third audit cycle. The university received special praise in the audit for its educational leadership and the diverse ways in which the personnel’s well-being at work is supported.
The University of Jyväskylä passed the audit conducted by the Finnish Education Evaluation Centre (FINEEC) and was awarded a quality label valid for six years. Passing the audit shows that the university’s activities and quality system meet both the national criteria and the European quality assurance criteria for higher education institutions.
All-encompassing educational leadership and a high standard of teaching
Education at the University of Jyväskylä is led convincingly and efforts are made to implement the education in an alignment manner. The university puts a great deal of effort in supporting and guiding the students’ studies and ensuring student well-being. The audit team concludes that educational provision is developed and valued at the University of Jyväskylä. The university’s multidisciplinary master’s programmes have also been developed in cooperation for a long time.
“We were particularly impressed by the all-encompassing nature of educational development and systematic work on the curricula. The student feedback system could be updated, and students could receive feedback on their feedback more often. If this were the case, the University of Jyväskylä’s educational development processes could set an example for all Finnish higher education institutions”, says Professor Helka-Liisa Hentilä from the University of Oulu, the chair of the audit team.
Emphasis on well-being at work and personnel development
The University of Jyväskylä makes great efforts to support the personnel’s well-being at work, equality and non-discrimination. The personnel also understand the link between their work and the university’s objectives. The quality system has been developed comprehensively over a long period of time. However, the audit team encourages the university to ensure that the holistic approach will not, as a flip side, lead to rigid procedures in which small matters that require immediate attention and could be quickly improved are forgotten.
An important role in the region
Regional stakeholders acknowledge and value cooperation with the University of Jyväskylä. The university thus has a clear, important role as a developer and advocate of the region. The University of Jyväskylä also engages in a great deal of cooperation through its networks at international, national and regional level.
The University of Jyväskylä is a national pioneer in promoting open research. The university should communicate more systematically about the versatile work and research it conducts, and support researchers in being more active communicators. The university’s societal engagement could also be more goal-oriented in the future, and specific indicators could be used to monitor it. The quality system could also be complemented with parts that concern societal engagement.
The audits of higher education institutions’ quality systems were launched Finland in 2005. All Finnish universities and universities of applied sciences have participated in the audits of higher education institutions. The third audit cycle, which began with pilot audits in 2018, is currently under way. The University of Jyväskylä was the first university to go through a third-cycle audit under the new audit framework.
The audit report is available on FINEEC’s audit platform.
- Helka-Liisa Hentilä, Professor, Chair of the Audit Team, 040 837 5527, helka-liisa.hentila(at)oulu.fi
- Mira Huusko, Senior Advisor, Project Manager of the Audit, 029 533 5565, mira.huusko(at)karvi.fi