With a view to implementing accreditation processes as a key component of external quality assurance, ANQA makes use of the services of highly qualified experts, who carry desk-review and site visit, form the basis on which they submit their final report.
The selection of peer-review experts is one of the most important steps of the accreditation process to be taken, inasmuch as the recognition of accreditation decisions by education stakeholders mainly depends on the level of adherence to both the selection criteria of external experts and the implementation of established procedures.
The peer-review panel is made up of specialists and students who are selected according to clearly defined procedures developed by ANQA and ratified by the Board of Trustees. The panels are composed of local and international experts who are well-known highly qualified specialists with sufficient expertise in the implementation of quality assurance processes.
A large number of factors come into play in the selection procedure of experts: they are selected according to the adequate degree of spoken and written communication skills (communication skills both in speech and in writing) as well as skills at conducting meetings and focus group discussions, analyzing and synthesizing a wide range of information. In choosing an expert, there are also a number of important personal characteristics to consider, especially the ones that will ensure an unbiased and objective evaluation.
To effectively apply the above-mentioned skills and competences in accreditation processes, ANQA periodically conducts trainings for expert panel members.
ANQA forms two panels of experts to perform institutional and programme accreditation processes.
Expert panels are composed of:
International experts are selected from the expert pool of an authoritative international accreditation (quality assurance) agency or from the international expert pool of ANQA.
Academic staff representatives should:
Representatives from the field of education management should:
Students engaged in review panels should:
Representatives from professional or specific field of /industry should have:
Experts involved in the accreditation of higher education institutions should have recognized qualifications on the level of a PhD or status of an assistant and associate professor or higher. For the accreditation of institutions, delivering vocational education and training (VET) experts should have at least recognized qualifications at the Master’s level or should be certified education specialists.
Local experts should be fully proficient in both spoken and written Armenian. At least one of the local experts in the panel should demonstrate an appropriate level of proficiency in the English language.
Experts should also have knowledge and skills in applying institutional and programme accreditation criteria and standards.
All experts should have:
Experts’ Personal Qualities
An expert should:
Experts should possess the aforesaid qualities so that they can:
In order to become an expert, the candidate should send his/her CV to firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail.
The initial selection of candidate experts is being made by the committee formed from ANQA’s experienced staff, who base their selection on the data presented in CVs. Selected expert-candidates are provided with a “Login” and “Password” to fill in the electronic survey of ANQA’s expert’s database (http://experts.anqa.am).
Based on the electronic survey data, expert-candidates are called for an interview during which they submit all the necessary documents validating the information provided by them. Candidates selected as a result of an interview are included into the expert pool, which ensures their participation in the trainings organized by ANQA.
Candidates who successfully complete the trainings acquire the status of an external expert and are registered in the expert pool by ANQA.
ANQA provides ‘refresher’ training sessions and periodic short training courses for the experts whose nominations have been approved by the TLI under review. These trainings are designed to keep experts updated on new and evolving procedures and requirements. Such trainings are conducted by ANQA professional staff, coordinators, and sometimes by the most qualified experts before the site visit.
Before experts undertake the study or assessment of documentation submitted by the educational institution, they must disclose any professional, financial and work-related interest that could be construed as a conflict of interest. They must inform ANQA in writing about any problem that might provoke a conflict of interest with the institution and must sign an agreement whereby any kind of conflict of interest is excluded.