The purpose of external evaluations is to enhance the positive effects of self-evaluations. More competent and independent evaluators represent an important advantage of external evaluations.
External evaluation of the University is initiated on the proposal of the Senate of the University, whereas external evaluations of university members are initiated on the proposal of senates or expert councils of university members.
The University or university member select external evaluators. External evaluation may be conducted by the national evaluation agency, a recognized foreign agency or a relevant institution from the International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education (INQAAHE). External evaluators are appointed for each evaluation procedure separately.
On the basis of the submitted application, the external evaluator sets a date by which the University or the university members must submit the documentation available. The external evaluator appoints the external evaluation committee, which may request the following documents:
- annual work programme of the University or its members
- annual report of University or its members
- self-evaluation report of the University or its members showing activities in the field of quality monitoring and assurance as well as overcoming deficiencies
- results of the student survey for the past three academic years prior to the external evaluation of the University or its members, the work programme referred to in the first indent also for the academic year in which the external evaluation took place
- rules of procedure for monitoring, determining and assuring the quality of the University or its members
- mission and vision of the University or its members
- strategic plan of the University or its members
- strategic plan, mission and vision of the University also if only the quality of university members is evaluated
- documentation kept by the University or its members on the basis of the Higher Education Act and other acts
- other documentation the University or its members consider necessary in order to conduct the external evaluation
During the visit of the evaluation committee, evaluators conduct interviews with both teaching and non-teaching staff, the management of the University or its members and students. The University or its members must provide relevant documentation requested by the committee. In addition, the management must offer the committee its assistance. During the visit, all employees in charge of individual processes must be available.
Costs of the committee's visit shall be incorporated into the financial plan and covered by the University or its members.
The external evaluation committee compiles the evaluation report by the stipulated deadline. The report is first presented to the Rector, the dean or director, who may inspect, clarify potential ambiguities and file observations by the agreed deadline. The report, along with the observations, is then submitted to the University or its members. The University or its members must inform all employees of the report and the findings of the committee. The report is made public, and the University or its members may inform the relevant ministry in charge of higher education and other competent external institutions with the findings.