Bachelor master system at utrecht university
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Bachelor/Master system at Utrecht University. Professor Hans van Himbergen Vice-rector International Educational Affairs Utrecht University, the Netherlands 7 April 2003. The Netherlands. Utrecht. 400 km. PhD. master 1-2 years. bachelor 3 years years. HBO. bachelor 3 years.

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Bachelor/Master system at Utrecht University

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Bachelor/Master system at Utrecht University

Professor Hans van Himbergen

Vice-rector International Educational Affairs

Utrecht University, the Netherlands

7 April 2003


The Netherlands


Utrecht

400 km


PhD

master

1-2 years

bachelor

3 years years

HBO

bachelor

3 years

bachelor

4 years

MBO

4 years

Appren

ticeship

training

VWO

HAVO

3 years

VMBO

VBO

2 years

1 year

1 year

Basic general secondary education

3 years

Primary education

(age 4-12) 8 years

University

Dutch Educational System


  • Utrecht University

  • TypeResearch university

  • Founded1636

  • Bachelor programmes 48

  • Master programmes195

  • Research schools 21

  • Top research schools4

  • PhD theses 390

  • Staff (fte)5.593

  • Students22.400

  • PhD students920

  • Budget (US$)550.000.000

    • 75% public


Why change our academic education (1)?

  • Number of students has grown dramatically since the mid seventies

  • Student’s talents, interests and ambitions are diverse and not settled when they enter the university

  • Long discussions about success rates (with government) and suitability (with ‘employers’) of education

  • Previous efforts Dutch government: reform = cost containment universities without much regard for educational demands

  • Previous efforts UU: differentiation leads towards more different tracks, not towards flexibility for students

  • Both general academic and research skills call for interactive capabilities in an inter/multidisciplinary setting


Increase in students 1950 -2000(the Netherlands)


Succes rate students(Utrecht University)


% graduated per year after enrollment(Utrecht University)


Why change our academic education (2)?

  • Cater to the interest in international experience among students, both our own and from abroad

  • Need to maintain/increase the international profile of the university’s research activities

  • Shortage of potential students in some fields

  • Need to attract enough young academic potential in an internationally competitive environment


Old wine in new bottles?

With the introduction of the Bachelor/Master system, Utrecht University is seizing the opportunity to implement real innovation in its education.

Key characteristics:

  • Bachelor’s degree programme allows students considerable individual freedom of choice and emphasises general academic skills

  • Focus on the mutual commitment of students and the University

  • Intensive academic counselling

  • Wide choice of research- or profession-oriented Master’s degree programmes (including programmes taught in English)


Two phases, each with its own set of objectives

Bachelor’s degree programme

  • Academic skills (regardless of specific content)

  • Gradual focus on a more specific/discipline-oriented interest

  • Clarification of possible career ambitions

    Master’s degree programme

    Specialisation with a view to:

  • Scientific research

  • Professional career at academic level


Two phases, each with its own teaching model

The Bachelor’s degree programme focuses on expression and development of the student’s talent, interest and ambition:

  • Restricted choice within context of the Major

  • Unrestricted choice in optional course profile

    The Master’s degree programme is mainly expertise-driven

  • Programmes with UU profile

  • Restricted admission

  • Tailored to employment profiles


Structure of Bachelor’s degree programme

  • Major(main subject, up to 75% of programme)

    • Compulsory Major course modules

    • Optional Major course modules

  • Optional course profile(at least 25% of programme)

    • Chosen from entire range of courses offered by Utrecht University

    • Either additional course modules within the Major

    • Or course modules outside the Major that match the student’s ambitions and interests

    • Or a Minor


Total

180 ECTS

(90

-

)135 ECTS

Major

(department)

Discipline

-

related subjects

standard 105 ECTS

Max. 75

ECTS

uniform for all major students,

-

65 ECTS discipline related optional courses

approx. 30 ECTS

Academic theories and methodologies

Max. 15

ECTS

compulsory, min. 7.5

ECTS

at level 2 or 3

At least 45 ECTS

Optional course profile

( student)

Min. 15

ECTS

at level 2, if Minor at least 7.5

ECTS

at

level 3

Academic development portfolio

Bachelor degree requirements

At least 45 ECTS at level 3


External

Flux out

Flux in

Bachelor

Master degree

from highschool

degree

Years

Optional course profile

Scheme

of bachelor

-

master

flux in

1

2

3

4

5

= ‘

17


Teaching: the old situation

  • In spite of a single student records system (OSIRIS), students were unable to access information about courses in other departments

  • 8 different timetables, many different course lengths and starting dates

  • Enormous differences in weighting of course modules

  • Tendency for departments to downgrade credits awarded by other departments


University-wide teaching framework

  • Uniform academic year with four teaching periods, starting around 1 Sept, 15 Nov, 1 Feb and 15 April.

  • Standard size of course modules: 7.5 ECTS

  • Bachelor course modules at 3 levels:

    (1) Introductory, (2) Intermediate, (3) Advanced

  • Prerequisites formulated for all course modules

  • All Bachelor course modules listed in online University Course Catalogue

  • Standardised enrolment procedure for all course modules


Internal budget and funding policy

  • Budget

    • One single rate for teaching

    • Financing based on duration of programme:

      • Bachelor 3 years

      • Master 1 or 2 years

    • Reduction of effects of delays

  • Funding

    • Simple, effective funding of courses

    • Funding of academic counselling


Undergraduate – Graduate – Research/PhD

Division of responsibilities for

  • Undergraduate phase (Majors and academic development)

  • Graduate phase (programme and admission of students to Master’s degree programmes)

  • Research and PhD programme

    The Dean decides how much time each employee devotes to:

  • Undergraduate teaching

  • Graduate teaching

  • Research and PhD programme


Undergraduate programme: roles and responsibilities

The University

Provides context for and monitors:

  • Educational framework

  • Level and nature of academic development

  • Quality and quality control

  • Induction of first-year students

  • Academic counselling

    Certifies:

  • Course modules

  • Majors

  • Minors


Undergraduate programme: roles and responsibilities

Deans are responsible for:

  • Commissioning departments to provide teaching and approving Major/Minor requirements

  • Ensuring the quality of the teaching staff


Undergraduate programme: roles and responsibilities

Departments are responsible for:

  • The induction and academic counselling of Major students

  • Offering course modules for Major students

  • Offering a curriculum for academic development

  • Determining compulsory component of Majors

  • Offering any course modules for non-Major students

  • Stipulating what constitutes a Minor within their field of competence

  • Awarding Bachelor’s degrees in accordance with university requirements

  • Arranging quality control


Undergraduate programme: roles and responsibilities

Teaching staff are responsible for:

  • Participating in the general counselling activities of their department, including the induction of first-year students

  • Developing course modules in such a way that students who take part in accordance with the indicated guidelines can pass the module

  • Teaching the course modules as described

  • Stating sufficiently clearly in the course module descriptions what is required to pass the module

  • Offering students adequate guidance both within and outside timetabled activities

  • Notifying students of their final mark within two weeks of the end of any course module


Undergraduate programme: roles and responsibilities

Students are responsible for:

  • Enrolling at the department of their initial choice of Major

  • Establishing their definitive choice of Major within a year

  • Choosing undergraduate subjects that will best equip them for their choice of graduate programme

  • Enrolling in course modules and actively participating in coursework and assessment


Graduate programme: roles and responsibilities

The Graduate School is responsible for

  • Supervising students (including with regard to future careers)

  • Offering degree programmes that will lead to Master’s degrees

  • Defining the admission criteria

  • Selecting students

  • Arranging quality control


Graduate programme: roles and responsibilities

The deans (one or more) are responsible for:

  • Determining departmental capacity for programmes

  • Setting final degree requirements

  • Ensuring quality of teaching staff

  • Ensuring students are adequately informed about options within the graduate programme

  • Arranging external accreditation

    The University is responsible for:

  • Certifying the programmes

  • Certifying the admission procedures

  • Ensuring there is adequate departmental capacity


Messages to the Chilean rectors:

  • Universities should take the lead when considering major changes in higher education

  • Cherish the ambitions of your prospective students, rather than your own notions of what a ‘programme of education’ should look like

  • Involve all essential parties from the outset in the process of designing any major changes

  • Make parties responsible for those parts of the educational process that they can really control; don’t hold them accountable for parts of the process that they cannot directly influence.


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