25 March 2021

Quality Assurance (QA)

The process or set of processes adopted nationally and institutionally to ensure the quality of educational programmes and qualifications awarded. Quality assurance should ensure a learning environment in which the content of programmes, learning opportunities and facilities are fit for purpose. Quality assurance is often referred to in the context of a continuous improvement cycle (i.e. assurance and enhancement activities).

Source: European Union (2018) ECTS Users’ Guide.
Internal and external quality assurance

IQA is the ongoing, continuous process of evaluating, monitoring and improving the quality of a higher education institution and its study programmes. A distinction is typically made between internal quality assurance (IQA) – whereby practices to improve the quality takes place within the university – and external quality assurance (EQA), which is often performed by a national agency, sometimes together with professional bodies or private providers of QA services.

Source: UNESCO