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A. Galán-Mañas, M. Fuentes Agustí, M.E. Suárez-Ojeda

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (SPAIN)
In the European Higher Education Area quality is a key element. In recent years, the quality at universities has been measured in terms of the research conducted by professors rather than analyzing their teaching practice, which is the activity that gives meaning to the institution and attracts students.

One instrument that provides more data about the academic staff performance is the teaching portfolio, as qualitative and quantitative data can be extracted from it. In this sense, the teaching portfolio can become an indicator of the quality of an institution, given that it could reflect the philosophy and methodology of its academic staff. That is why any teacher training program organized by the university must include a space to reflect over professors’ teaching philosophy and methods. This will lead to a self-assessment and a possible improvement of the overall teaching practice.

In this paper we are presenting the design, implementation and evaluation of a training plan for professors that has been carried out in Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Nicaragua (UNAN Managua) under the project "Initial and permanent training of teachers at UNAN-Managua. A program for institutional development through professors training and technology strengthening" (AECID A1/041892/11). The first phase of this project has consisted of a course given by professors of Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) to professors of UNAN-Managua, in which the professors had to prepare their own Teaching Portfolio. The purpose of this training is to trigger cascade training plan, so once professors have been trained, they can train other professors at the university. The first data collected indicates that a process change has been initiated, as it was proven by the teaching portfolios we have assessed. On one hand, the assessment of the teaching portfolios has also been useful to detect professors’ training needs. On the other hand, the direction team at UNAN-Managua has welcomed the training program and will take into account for future development of innovation in the teaching practice, in terms of promotion and recruitment of new faculty members.