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University Board adopts plan for internationalisation

The University Board discussed the programme portfolio, the revised budget, and additional funding into the wage negotiation pot this autumn, among other things, in the June meeting.

University board meets Wisenet

The University Board's June meeting kicked off with a board seminar. The board reviewed the documents relating to the forthcoming board matter about the management structure of the university. What the University and University Colleges Act says about the matter and the consultation statements from UiA's faculties, departments and unions were reviewed.

How UiA will be managed from 1 August 2023 will be discussed and decisions made at the September meeting. There are three main questions to answer:

  1. Elected or appointed rector
  2. In a rector election, candidates must run individually or as a team together with a vice-rector, for example
  3. How the management structure at faculty level should be

The University Board gathered for a seminar on Tuesday 14 June.

At the seminar, the board also met with researchers Hanne and Tor Stensola for an update on how the work to develop the field of neuroscience at UiA is going. The board also carried out its self-assessment and got an update on the status of the work on the lifelong learning project at UiA.

Additional funding to wage negotiations

The university director submitted a proposal to the board to add two million kroner from UiA to the wage negotiations this autumn. This was adopted.

These funds will be added to the pot that will be distributed among the employees when the local negotiations begin.

Programme portfolio review

The quality system for education at UiA means that a review of the university's programme portfolio must be carried out every four years. The purpose of the review is to make an overall assessment of the extent to which the university contributes to solving societal challenges through its study programmes.

The faculties have reported to the board how they view their study programmes and presented their plans. 

Based on the review, the University Board decided that:

  • Work should be done to specify criteria for the establishment and closure of study programmes that may serve as a basis for discussions when assessing changes to the programme portfolio at UiA
  • Work should be done to ensure that the quality system for education can identify programmes where there are challenges and establish criteria for further follow-up
  • Principles should be established for the distribution of credits in connection with the closure of study programmes
  • The concepts of ‘bærebjelkestudier’ and ‘signature programmes’ will be abolished
  • The university management should follow up the faculties that face special recruitment and capacity challenges
  • It will be considered whether the programme portfolio review should be carried out in this manner every four years, or in a different manner

Several of the items above will be considered by the University Board when dealing with other matters.

An item in the proposal about the use of annual quality reports to see how each individual study programme follows up UiA's strategy was removed.

Goals and measures for internationalisation adopted

UiA's strategy has overall goals for how internationally oriented the university should be, and UiA will also follow up the government white paper, ‘En verden av muligheter’ (a world of opportunities, Norwegian only). The goals have been specified in an action plan for internationalisation for the period 2022-2026, with measures for how the goals will be reached.

The plan contains goals and measures for how UiA will work with international networks, international perspectives, student mobility, and work- and learning environments.

The action plan was adopted as recommended with some minor changes.

Update on the year so far

The University Board reviewed the report on the activities for the first half of 2022, including the revised budget.

From the revised budget, which was adopted as proposed, the following allocations can be mentioned:

  • Funds related to recruitment positions will be distributed among the faculties - NOK 1.89 million.
  • Improved employee profiles on uia.no - NOK 0.25 million.
  • Summer course at Metochi Stduy Centre 2022 - NOK 0.34 million
  • Funding for increased costs for Open access publications - NOK 0.75 million.
  • ‘Teams telephony’ license and security solutions in Microsoft - NOK 0.6 million.
  • Digitisation of paper archives - NOK 0.7 million.
  • TV studio upgrade in Grimstad - NOK 0.3 million.
  • Increased license for Service Now - NOK 0.7 million.
  • Equipment the Faculty of Health and Sport Sciences has invested in for the exhibition arena in the I4Health building - NOK 0.6 million.
  • Equipment for simulation labs at the clinic laboratories on both campuses - NOK 1.4 million.
  • Allocation to the ‘Fellesløft’ project at the Faculty of Humanities and Education - NOK 6.1 million.
  • Allocation to investment funds for flexible teaching spaces - NOK 7 million.
  • Increased electricity costs - NOK 8.0 million.
  • Student culture house in Kristiansand - NOK 10.0 million.

Special needs accommodation and a second chance at master’s 

The University Board took a stand on two issues related to the Regulations on studies and examinations at UiA.

Firstly, students may in special cases be granted the opportunity to submit a new master's thesis, but only once. The faculty boards will have the authority to assess these cases.

Secondly, it was clarified who should process applications for accommodation related to teaching. In short, the University Board decided that UiA's Special Needs Accommodation office should make decisions concerning the physical conditions at the institution, while the faculties make decisions that concern the teaching itself.

The changes will take effect from the coming academic year 2022-23.

Dialogue with Wisenet

Wednesday's board meeting started with a dialogue meeting with the Priority Research Centre Wisenet. Wisenet conducts research in ICT, including smart sensors and networks.

The director of the centre, Professor Baltasar Beferull-Lozano, presented to the board how the centre works to secure external funding, the development of research talent and the plans to apply for status as a Centre of Excellence (SFI/SFF).

Other select matters from the University Board meeting on 15 June 2022

  • The programme portfolio for 2023/2024 was adopted in accordance with the proposals from the faculties and the Teacher Education Unit
  • The education and research report for 2022 was adopted

All the meeting documents can be found here (Norwegian only)