A. Hašková, D. Lukáčová

Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra (SLOVAKIA)
Questions regarding dimensions and evaluation of quality of education and issue of ensuring and improving the quality of education have been resonating worldwide for a longer period. Their solution has become central to national strategies of school policies in all EU countries. Although the evaluation and assurance of the quality of education can be done in relation to its different dimensions, beyond dispute the key factor of the education quality phenomenon are teachers and their professionalism. In the paper main goals and particular results of two projects will be presented which Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra (Slovakia) is currently participating in. One of these projects is an international project of the EU program Erasmus+ Enhancing Capacities in Implementation of Institutional Quality Assurance Systems and Typology Using Bologna Process Principles (IQAT project) and the other one is a national research project Evaluation of Teacher´s Competences.

In the European context the quality of higher education is followed by a set of criteria which are known as EU norms and standards (European Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance – ESG). The IQAT project is aimed at dissemination of experiences of the EU countries with the introduction and use of the relevant internal rating and quality assurance systems in tertiary education institutions outwards to higher education institutions in Asia, in particular to universities in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. Starting point of the project was to create a strategy which would show where to start with the implementation of the system of quality at the universities involved. Having to do this, it was necessary to find a tool enabling a quick and easy comparison of the systems of the higher education institutions involved. As a suitable and efficient tool enabling such comparison the methodology of U-Map was chosen. This methodology allows comparison up to 29 quality indicators divided in six different dimensions, which are:
- teaching and learning processes,
- student profile,
- research outputs,
- regional engagement,
- involvement in knowledge exchange,
- international activities.

In the full-text of the paper a particular example of the final result of one from the evaluations done according this methodology will be presented.

The national project Evaluation of Teacher´s Competences deals with the issue of the social need to eliminate the lack of evaluation criteria and tools related to teachers' quality assessment in dimensions of teachers´ professional competence evaluation. The main aim of the project is identification of a general set of criteria and related evaluation tools applicable for valuation of quality and qualification of teachers´ educational activities.

As it can be seen from the above-presented dimensions of the U-Map methodology though the key factor of the education quality phenomenon is the teacher, evaluation of the teachers is taken into consideration in this methodology only marginally. But in the internal systems of quality assurance it should have a clear and significant place. And this is a point of a big synergy of the both projects, as the results of the project Evaluation of Teacher´s Competences, despite the fact that it is a national project, can be used in the IQAT project as a platform for designing the content of the ESG component 1.4 Quality assurance of teaching staff into the institutions´ internal quality assurance systems.