The Representative for Academic Quality: a mediator, ombudsperson and confidential advisor
As a confidential advisor for students, the Representative for Academic Quality is the central contact for students with ideas and complaints. She is directly involved in the ongoing development of the basic conditions of teaching and learning. She provides the university with direct input from the students' perspective.
The Representative for Academic Quality is also an active mediator between the university and students, and assumes an important role in the dialogue with teaching staff, students and other university contacts: alongside those with responsibility, she reviews suggested changes for usefulness and feasibility. Solutions and potential for implementation are then studied jointly.
Good practical and innovative ideas can be drawn from the students' perspective, enabling targeted quality assurance and improvement of the university's offerings.
It is also possible for students simply to obtain advice and assess the situation, without needing to involve the Representative for Academic Quality further.
Securing and improving degree course offers - but how?
An enquiry, written or oral, is outlined with full legal protection of the confidentiality of the person concerned. This protection allows students the opportunity to obtain advice about their options (depending on the issue) first of all.
After that, with the agreement of the student, people in potential roles of authority are involved.
An assessment and opinion is given by the person in charge. Finally, working closely with a range of parties from the university, such as the Deans of Studies, members of the Examination Offices, the Office of Student Affairs or the student representatives, solutions or proposals are developed, and a suitable procedure is agreed. The students or groups of students are informed about the development and the result.
Issues and challenges
Issues dealt with to date concern both the exam administration system and procedural questions, the advisory, support and other services (e.g. availability, or opening hours) as well as curriculum-related problems (e.g. course requirements, topicality of study content) and equipment and resources (e.g. student-staff ratios). Difficulties working with teaching staff have also been handled; personal data are always kept confidential throughout the procedure.