“Rīga Stradiņš University (RSU) is a student-centred university,” concluded experts who paid a visit to RSU on 15-16 February within the framework of PASCL (Peer Assessment of Student Centred Learning) project. The PASCL Project aims to assist in implementing student-centred learning (SCL) strategies and approaches at institutional level and to foster a culture of SCL in higher education institutions across Europe. RSU Student Union was the initiator of the visit. RSU is among few institutions of higher education in Europe to be selected for the visit.
The concept of student-centred learning allows viewing the study process from the perspective of a student – it includes such factors as the involvement of students in the development and improvement of study programmes and participation in decision-making process at the institution. Additionally, the concept involves stressing various support activities offered to students: scholarships, accommodation opportunities for students, the speed of provision of practical information, opportunity to receive psychological assistance.
Prior to the visit, the member from the Central European University in Budapest and experts from Denmark and Macedonia got acquainted with RSU self-assessment report. Taking into account the interests of the Student Union and time limit for the visit, the focus was laid on the Faculty of Medicine and the Faculty of Communication. The report contained information on the structure of the university and statistical data, decision-making bodies with student representatives etc. During the visit, the experts met RSU management, representatives from administration and Student Union, as well as students of the Faculty of Medicine and Communication, deans and teachers.
PASCL expert meeting with RSU Vice-Rector for Education Prof. Tatjana Koķe (first from the right) and Prof. Juta Kroiča (first from the left)
According to Vice-Rector for Education Prof. Tatjana Koķe, “at the level of senior management, we are convinced that focus on student-centred learning will increase. Our students express growing interest in the improvement of the study process and are involved in it. Experts appreciated student participation in decision making process and our efforts in fostering the quality of the study process. We are proud of being seen as open that testifies to our self-criticism and desire and ability to seek for improvements.”
To foster student-centred approach, RSU will take into account recommendations put forward by experts and strive to improve e-studies environment, update types and content of examinations, foster communication etc. RSU is praised for its initiative in the improvement of the study process – the university has been working actively to improve e-environment for the benefit of students and academic staff.
PASCL report is available here.
For more information on PASCL: http://pascl.eu/
PASCL award to Rīga Stradiņš University in recognition of ensuring student-centred approach, received by Arkādijs Zvaigzne from RSU Student Union in Brussels