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The University of Ostrava has acquired the institutional accreditation

As only the 6th university in the Czech Republic the University of Ostrava has acquired the so called “institutional accreditation” which confirmes its quality and it gives the university considerable freedom. It has succeeded in seven areas of education, by which it has covered majority of its study programmes.

“Formerly, the Accreditation Commission had been deciding about the accreditation of the particular study field. The accreditation process itself was lengthy, dependent on the decision making “from the table” without any deeper knowledge about the given university and it did not allow the universities to react flexibly to the labour market requirements or the students’ needs,” Monika Šumberová, the chancellor of the University of Ostrava, explains the situation which had quite limited the universities.

Now the National Accreditation Bureau makes decisions about the accreditations. It consists of independent experts and it can give the universities even the so called “institutional accreditation” for a particular area of education. For ten years, the university gets the right to make decisions about the study programmes which will be taught in the given area, about their content and amount. It can react flexibly for example to the requirements of the employers and adjust the study programmes according to what is expected from the graduates. The newly established body oversees the quality – Board of internal evaluation.

“It has shown that the board is a very contributive platform. It consists of respected persons who have already proved that they are not in the board as the representatives of the faculties but they are aware of their important role as the guards of the quality and development of the whole University of Ostrava. The institutional accreditation brings us greater autonomy which, for us, will be the source of the responsible control over the quality of our own study programmes,” said the rector of the University of Ostrava, professor Jan Lata.

The university was preparing for two years for the whole process. It was needed to adjust most of the current university international regulations and to accept few new, to establish the Board of internal evaluation of the University of Ostrava, to set a new system of evaluation of study programmes, to accept its own standards of the study programmes quality and to prepare the specific application for the institutional accreditation. The University of Ostrava sent the application on 2 March and on 23 August the National Accreditation Bureau approved it. On 9 October the University of Ostrava received the official decision.

“Essential for the university is the broad autonomy which comes with the institutional accreditation itself. The university can, among others, newly decide itself about the recognition of a secondary school education from abroad (now the process is in the hands of regional authorities) or for example about the creation of a job, the so called extraordinary professor – an expert from the particular field or from abroad who may have the necessary professional erudition but do not have the formal academic degrees from the Czech Republic,” remarked Monika Šumberová.

The new system of accreditation means significant changes for the applicants. From the academic year 2019/2020 the universities will be changing the existing arrangement of study programmes which were divided into study fields and will turn to newly accredited study programmes allowing specialization.

The applicants can newly choose to their main study programme (so called major) also secondary programme (so called minor) and get much broader spectrum of knowledge from more fields. In practice it means that they can choose programmes across the faculties and combine them.

The current offer for the academic year 2019/2020 is made by study fields and also by study programmes. Its definite form for the candidates will be prepared in the autumn. The current students and applicants who are applying for their study fields will finish their studies as they are used to and the change will affect them when they fill in another application, for example for the follow up master studies.

So far only five Czech universities have got the institutional accreditation. The first one was the Charles University in Prague, second Masaryk University in Brno, then Palacky University Olomouc, university in Pardubice and the Technical University of Ostrava.

The University of Ostrava as the sixth university joins the most prestigious universities in the Czech Republic. It got the institutional accreditation in the following seven areas of study: Filology (Bc., Mgr., Ph.D.), Philosophy, religious studies and theology (Bc., Mgr., Ph.D.), Historical sciences (Bc., Mgr., Ph.D.), Social work ((Bc., Mgr., Ph.D.), Physical education and sport; kinanthropology (Bc., Mgr.), Teaching (Bc., Mgr.), Heatlh Sciences (Bc., Mgr., Ph.D.).

Updated: 06. 02. 2019

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