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Stud0608[1] Presentation Transcript

  • 1. Norwegian Higher Education Reforms Since 1990 Sverre Rustad Deputy Director General
  • 2.
    • Overview of Norwegian Higher Education
    • 1990s reforms
    • The Quality Reform (2003)
    • The Stjernø Committee (2008)
  • 3. Norwegian higher education – an overview
    • 38 state-owned HEIs
      • 7 universities
      • 5 specialized university institutions (architecture, business administration, music, sports, veterinary medicine)
      • 24 university colleges
      • 2 academies of the arts
    • Military and police academies
    • Private HEIs
      • not for profit
      • approximately 10 % of students
      • 6 fully accredited institutions
      • a further 25 with accredited programmes
  • 4. Norwegian Higher Education (II)
    • Decentralized institutional structure
      • successful in terms of access
      • poses challenges in terms of quality
    • High share of public funding
    • No tuition fees in state-owned HEIs
    • Around 50 % of the relevant age cohorts now attend HE
      • 1 in 5 students older than 30
      • only 1 in 5 students younger than 22
  • 5. 1990s reforms
    • Pre-1990:
      • large number of very small higher education institutions
      • massification had not started in earnest
      • only the universities and specialized university institutions were covered by institutional legislation
    • 1991: White paper on Higher Education set direction for major reforms
      • based on recommendations of 1988 government commission (the Hernes Committee)
  • 6. 1990s reforms (II)
    • 1994: 98 regional colleges merged into 26 state (university) colleges
    • 1995: Act relating to Universities and Colleges
      • covered all state-owned HEIs
      • institutions named in act under respective categories
      • enshrined principle of division of labour
    • Steering: HEIs micro-managed by Ministry to large extent
  • 7. The Quality Reform (2003)
    • Based on the proposals of the Mjøs Committee (2000)
    • Instruments:
      • March 2001: Main white paper (St.meld. nr. 27)
      • June 2001: Decisions by the Storting (parliament) on principles of the reform
      • Spring 2002: 5 supplementary White Papers and 2 Legal Bills, new decisions by the Storting
      • 1. July 2002: Legislation comes into force
      • 1. January 2003: establishment of the Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education (NOKUT)
    • Reform implemented at all HEIs from autumn 2003 (some from autumn 2002)
  • 8. The Quality Reform (II)
    • Main elements:
      • Delegation of powers to HEIs in academic, organisational, and financial matters
        • including freedom to establish and withdraw study programmes
      • Changes in governance and management structures
      • New financing system based partly on output
      • Changes in student support system
      • New degree structure
      • New teaching and assessment methods focusing on student learning
      • Increased emphasis on internationalization; introduction of ECTS, Diploma Supplement etc.
  • 9. The Quality Reform (III)
    • “ Bologna Process in Norway”, but also strongly influenced by i.a. OECD review
    • Supported by substantial increase in funding (NOK 1,2 billion)
      • in addition approximately 800 million as a result of increased output
    • Institutions can move to “higher” category through accreditation process
  • 10. The quality reform – preliminary conclusions
    • Students produce more credits, but do not spend more time on studies
    • National quality assurance system established and well received
    • Internationalization takes time
    • Increased autonomy does not lead to more diversity
      • institutions compete for students i.a. by establishing competing programmes
      • universities set the norm for institutional and academic status
    • 3 new universities and 2 new specialized university institutions since 2005
  • 11. The Stjernø Committee: Challenges in 2008
    • Attempts at centrally regulated division of labour have not worked
    • Deregulation within present framework of governance seems to reduce rather than stimulate diversity
    • Fragmented institutional structure
      • many small campuses
      • fragmentation of research training a special problem
    • No top institutions in international rankings
    • Serious concerns about quality of key educational programmes
  • 12. Challenges in 2008 (II)
    • Increased competition for students, staff and research funds, also internationally
      • quality is at the centre of success
      • competitiveness in research requires concentration
    • Higher education and research seen as key to competitiveness and social, economic and cultural development
      • further increasing the pressure for quality
  • 13. Challenges in 2008 (III)
    • Demographic changes
      • reduced youth cohorts in most parts of the country from 2015
      • accentuated by social preferences
      • some institutions already face major recruitment problems
    • As more and more HEIs become universities, remaining university colleges, especially small regional ones, will struggle
  • 14. Challenges to diversity
    • All HEIs governed by same legislation
    • All HEIs required by law to carry out research and development work – no formal division of responsibilities between types of institutions
    • One common set of indicators for output-based financing
    • Structure of academic positions and salaries regulated nationally – same for all institutions
      • academic drift at personal level
  • 15. Challenges to diversity (II)
    • Possible for HEIs to be accredited in higher category – main criteria related to number of master and doctoral programmes
      • academic drift at institutional level
    • Strong regional element in all policy areas
      • activity/employment considerations
      • competition for resources
      • regions want universities
  • 16. The Stjernø Committee – Key considerations
    • How to balance national policies and institutional autonomy?
      • Institutional strategies determined by possibilities, internal and external pressures
      • not always in line with national goals and priorities
      • incentives vs. more direct steering
    • How to combine accessibility of educational provision with concentration of research?
    • How to maintain quality in a decentralized system?
    • How to maintain diversity?
  • 17. The Stjernø Committee – Proposals
    • process of mergers of HEIs, based on proposals from institutions
      • resulting institutions will be universities
    • stronger element of national steering/policy supported by strategic funding
    • development of distinctive institutional profiles through long-term agreements, supervised by international advisory group
    • concentration of research training
    • changes in institutional management
    • measures for strengthening key vocational programmes
  • 18. The Stjernø Committee - Reception
    • Analysis widely shared
    • Proposals for mergers greeted with universal scepticism
      • but few have been able to present alternative solutions
    • Other proposals meet with varying degrees of support
    • Political follow-up pending