Quality development and quality assurance in the field of education

The purpose of quality development and quality assurance in the field of education is to determine the quality of education and to continually improve it in a goal-oriented manner. Instruments and measures for quality development and quality assurance can be used at various levels of the education system:

System level
At the system level, these apply to the education system itself. They include, for example: the Swiss education monitoring process, the participation in international comparative studies or in country surveys (Programme for International Student Assessment [PISA], OECD's country surveys and reviews), the verifying of the national educational standards and cantonal monitoring of education. In addition, the recognition and accreditation of educational institutions and degree programmes, and intercantonal or Swiss-wide curricula and core curricula are also proven means of quality assurance.

Institutional level
At the institutional level, schools at all educational levels and training companies can define quality assurance concepts or take quality assurance measures. Such measures include, for example: quality assurance offices at higher education institutions, evaluation of the quality of training at training companies based on defined quality standards (QualiCarte), and evaluation of the current state of individual schools based on self-evaluations or external evaluations.

Individual level
At the individual level, teachers receive feedback on their teaching from pupils, their parents, head teachers or the supervisory authorities. Pupils are assessed by teachers, or receive an individual determination of their current state of knowledge and skills based on self-assessment tests. Similar mechanisms are employed at all levels: analysis (current situation) > goal setting (target situation) > taking measures > analysis etc.

Education monitoring process in Switzerland

The Federal Constitution (article 61a) stipulates that the Confederation and the cantons have the task of ensuring high quality in the education system. In this context, they have jointly set up a national education monitoring process, which provides a basis for the observation and further development of the Swiss education system. A key instrument is the Swiss Education Report. The Swiss Education Report includes data and information from statistics, research and administration, regarding the education system and the educational levels. It is released once every four years. The findings of the Swiss Education Report are intended to aid decision-making in education administration and education policy. With the "2011 Declaration" the Confederation and the cantons have defined mutual education policy objectives for the field of education in Switzerland. From these objectives, the Confederation and the cantons are deriving measures for their respective areas of responsibility. The achievement of these objectives and the effectiveness of the measures taken are to be reviewed in the next Education Report.

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Last update of this page: 26.07.2021