Quality at the School of Engineering
We regard quality as a permanent process to which every member of staff contributes in their individual function.
Understanding of quality
Our understanding of quality is centred on our staff acting under their own responsibility, an entitlement that is firmly anchored in the culture of the School of Engineering. In this way, all the members of staff contribute in their own individual functions to the quality and improvement of the academic programmes and services provided by the School of Engineering. Our quality management is based on the ZHAW Quality Strategy 2015-2025. This is aimed at the continuous improvement and further development of the quality fields of services, governance and resources. Working on from this, we have described our activities for the further development of quality in an Implementation Concept.
A key instrument for the external evaluation of our organisation structure and our services is the informed peer review process which is set out in the ZHAW Quality Strategy Annex A. The School of Engineering implemented this for the first time in 2019.
The management of the School of Engineering reviews its organisation, strategy and key processes at regular intervals. The strategy is implemented with the aid of a multi-year plan. To operationalise the measures, we set ourselves targets each year which serve as a management basis for our organisational units and staff. The guideline Our Understanding of Cooperation sets out the basic principles governing cooperation and communication between us. Student participation is assured by representatives of the VSZHAW.
We conduct regular reviews of the programmes we offer together with all the stakeholder groups and develop these programmes further. The School of Engineering has developed an Implementation Concept for the Evaluation of Academic Programmes which is coordinated with the ZHAW Evaluation Policy for Academic Programmes and describes the evaluation instruments and the process. Various different methods are employed, including surveys of employers, alumni and students, as well as roundtable talks with representatives of all the stakeholder groups.
Our continuing education courses are reflected on by the key stakeholder groups, adopting a multidimensional approach, in line with the ZHAW Evaluation Policy for Continuing Education. We base our quality development on the Implementation Concept for the Evaluation of Continuing Education and the Implementation Concept of the School of Engineering for the ZHAW quality strategy.
Research and development
Our cooperation with promotion agencies such as Innosuisse and the Swiss National Science Foundation and also within the framework of the EU Horizon 2020 programme serves as a quality label for the research projects conducted by our lecturers and research associates. Research projects carried out with promotion agencies are generally evaluated using their instruments and processes. For the research projects or service projects that we conduct directly with partners in industry and business without receipt of funding, we apply our own project evaluation process. A further indication of the high level of our research is the constantly increasing number of scientific, peer-reviewed publications.
Students and staff at the School of Engineering have many different opportunities to contribute to the continuous improvement of quality. The staff survey conducted every two years provides valuable pointers for this. We derive suitable measures from the results and proceed to implement these.