TEACHING PSYCHOLOGY IN EUROPE: A NETWORK FOR QUALITY ENHANCEMENT
In accord with the Bologna Agreement, European universities are moving towards a common framework for degree programmes. Already in Psychology there are European standards for the education and training of psychologists who qualify for independent professional practice (EuroPsy, European certificate in Psychology). The time is therefore right to consider standards of quality in teaching psychology in Europe.
There is considerable diversity between departments in, for example, the availability of teaching resources, the extent to which technology is used to support learning, the size of student cohorts and the extent to which postgraduates are involved in teaching. For many countries the three year Bachelor’s degree is a novel concept raising issues around curriculum design and as a result there is considerable variability in employment opportunities for graduates.
In July2007, the European Network for Psychology Learning and Teaching was formed to:
Over 40 departments have already expressed interest in contributing to and supporting the activities of this network.
The network is working towards developing three themes of activity:
Research to inform quality enhancement of psychology education
Within this theme departments across Europe will collaborate to provide an overview of teaching methodologies, assessment practices and innovative teaching methods. This research strand also aims to map the quality assurance and enhancement measures in place for psychology education across Europe and to work towards an agreed set of core competences for psychology educators.
The European Network for Psychology Learning and Teaching aims to raise the profile of the scholarship of teaching psychology through promoting its work at European psychology conferences and by encouraging psychology educators to carry out research related to their teaching. Professional development in the form of summer schools, on-line courses, exchange visits and workshops are some of the ways in which new lecturers and postgraduates can develop teaching skills in psychology. The network will seek to facilitate such opportunities.
Knowledge exchange and communication
This third strand of activity will provide a central EuroPLAT website. This will facilitate the sharing and dissemination of teaching material. Other resources will be developed, for example, a clearing house for postgraduates and lecturers to visit departments with particular expertise relating to teaching psychology (for example, e-learning, large classes, work placements and experiential learning).
This interactive poster will invite participants to identify key issues relating to teaching psychology within their own country and department and to suggest ways in which their department can help to build a strong European network focusing on teaching innovation and enhancement for psychology.
The presentation is prepared by committee members of the newly-formed European network to support psychology learning and teaching.
© 2008 Victor Karandashev