In 2018 in the context of the external quality assurance process, the Dutch-Flemish Accreditation Organisation (NVAO) thoroughly reviewed and assessed the academic quality of Vesalius College’s three Bachelor Programmes in Business Studies, Global Communications and International Affairs. After an extensive external evaluation led by an international panel of leading professors from the University of Cambridge (UK), the University of Antwerp, the University of Leuven (both Belgium) and the University of Amsterdam (Netherlands), all three BA programmes received full re-accreditation and positive results across all four NVAO quality standards.
The three NVAO reports stress Vesalius College’s “strong core faculty”, the “many talented professors” and their full commitment to “delivering high-quality teaching”, resulting in highly satisfied and successful students. The reports also noted the College’s commitment to ‘TPEL’ (Theory-guided, Practice-Embedded and Experiential Learning) across all curricula, the College’s small classes and “interactive lessons” as well as “a lot of time dedicated to formal, informal and precise feedback”, which allows students to progress and receive “a clear view on their learning path progression”. Furthermore, the panel commended the College’s “increased research-orientation and the strong educational culture [which] seem to be supported by all faculty members”.
All three NVAO reports emphasize: “To conclude, the panel is impressed by the many changes that have taken place in Vesalius College. These changes are in line with the recommendations of the previous panel. The panel has experienced a much stronger academic and coherent culture at Vesalius College compared to the visit in 2014.” As a result, the reports conclude that “the programmes offered at Vesalius College have some very strong points and a unique profile in Belgium”.
Professor Joachim Koops, who oversaw as Dean of VeCo the College’s entire reform and reaccreditation process from 2015 to 2018 stated: “We are absolutely delighted about the NVAO’s assessment. It is not only a tribute to all of my colleagues hard work, passion, expertise and commitment to comprehensive reform, constant self-improvement and academic excellence over the years, but also an acknowledgement of Vesalius College’s strong culture of quality and outstanding programmes. I am very pleased for our students and the entire College community about this kind of external validation and look forward to Vesalius College’s continued growth and development as a very strong and unique higher education institution indeed”.
The strong results in the NVAO reaccreditation assessments provide the College with a further boost for the next phase of its strategic development as an interdisciplinary ‘College of Global Affairs’ with a strong transatlantic and liberal arts heritage. The College seeks to widen its educational offerings and strengthen its scholarship, academic excellence and alumni support funds. We hope to be able to count on the support of many of our dedicated past graduates and alumni for the next phase of the College’s development.