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Research for University Evaluation

With the objective of building an efficient evaluation system in order to support and promote qualitative improvements and social accountability on the part of universities and colleges, NIAD-UE will conduct research concerning the evaluation of universities and colleges.
NIAD-UE will actively publish the outcomes of this research in order to contribute to qualitative improvements and the pursuit of accountability via the evaluation of universities and colleges, and to promote understanding of university evaluation throughout society.

1 .Research on verification and development of the university evaluation system

In recent years, the environment surrounding universities and higher education institutions has undergone substantial changes, so further deliberations concerning the content and standard of activities expected of universities and colleges by society are required, along with renewed consideration of appropriate approaches to management. Amid this situation, NIAD-UE is required to promote evolution in the role and methods of university evaluation, in order to ensure that it is an eff ective, efficient system. Accordingly, through this research project, it will engage in multifaceted verification of the certified evaluation and accreditation carried out by NIAD-UE and others to date, and the appropriateness and eff ects of methods of evaluating national university corporations; based on the outcomes thereof, it will examine future approaches to evaluation systems. Moreover, as well as responding to new requirements for university evaluation that emerge as a result of advances in higher education policy, NIAD-UE will conduct research concerning the development of new university evaluation systems in Japan; taking into account the latest situation in regard to higher education and evaluations conducted within Japan and overseas, this research will focus on such matters as approaches to meta-evaluation aimed at improving evaluation methods, the quality of evaluation results, and international recognition of evaluations, as well as endeavors to ensure complementarity between Institutional Evaluations, Subject Evaluations, and Function-specifi c Evaluations.

2. Research on evaluation activities that will contribute to quality improvement at universities

In order to enhance the quality of universities and colleges, it is necessary to resolve a variety of problems. This research project involves the following two perspectives.
1 ) Systems and methods for making eff ective use of evaluation
In order to conduct evaluations, it is necessary to identify the objectives and develop a plan, and then put in place a comprehensive system that encompasses everything including the data forming the evidence and day-to-day monitoring methods. Accordingly, NIAD-UE will conduct research aimed at introducing techniques for putting in place an evaluation system, while improving planning and ensuring that the departments responsible for evaluation in universities collaborate with the departments responsible for planning, in order to improve the self-evaluation capabilities of universities; furthermore, it will explore the preconditions for making eff ective use of such techniques. Moreover, in this process, NIADUE will make substantial, eff ective use of the knowledge and skills of profi t-making companies, government institutions, and non-profi t organizations, which have built up abundant experience of prior evaluation and the selection of indicators.
2 ) Intra-university evaluation techniques, collaboration with third-party evaluation, and methods for these
Approaches to internal evaluation methods within universities are an important perspective in relation to enhancing the quality of universities and colleges and pursuing accountability. For example, the question of how to evaluate the activities of academic staff is a vital issue in terms of both quality assurance and stimulating academic activity. Accordingly, NIAD-UE will conduct research concerning various internal evaluation methods used within universities, such as teaching portfolios and faculty development, and will share its findings with a broad range of stakeholders via workshops and initiatives to support the introduction of such methods. Moreover, NIAD-UE will conduct research concerning the question of how to build collaborative relationships between these internal quality assurance systems and external quality assurance systems in the form of third-party evaluation.

3. Research on collection and application of information in university evaluation

Following this introductory period, university evaluation must become a more effi cient, high-quality evaluation system based on objective data and information, and expert research and analysis. At the same time, it is also necessary to disseminate useful information to universities and society as a whole concerning the results of evaluations, in order to enhance the effects of evaluation. Rather than organizations conducting university evaluation working alone, it is becoming necessary to work in partnership with universities to rationalize the information and tasks required for evaluation, and engage in research and development focused on support systems and information technology, in order to consolidate the content of information relating to such university evaluation and the fl ow thereof. Accordingly, as well as gathering and analyzing the quantitative and qualitative information required to gain an understanding of education and research activities at universities and colleges (examination of evaluation indicators), this research project will examine such matters as ways in which evaluation can be streamlined, conducting studies of eff ective evaluation support methods based on the eff ective use of information technology. Moreover, NIAD-UE will conduct research concerning the university-related information required by society, and develop and off er suggestions for an information dissemination system that would facilitate the eff ective dissemination to the public of information about universities and university evaluation.

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