- March 4, 2022
- Posted by: devserver
- Category: Uncategorized
Directorate of Strategic Planning and Quality Assurance (SPQA)
University of Sierra Leone
- Review and update of the USL Strategic Plan
There is need to overhaul the 2019 – 2023 Strategic Plan as in current form do not effectively portray a University perspective as it focusses largely on college specific issues in more than the required details. Also, the Strategic Plan is hardly used as a point of reference for annual plans and activities. We need a strategic plan that is visionary offer long term aspirations for the University as a single entity with integrated constituent colleges and single Secretariat.
- Administrative Promotion Review – Staff Appraisal System and Performance Contract
There has been concerns about poor performance especially in the administrative functions and the lack of rigor in the promotion system for administrative staff when compared with the academic staff. There is an on-going review of administrative staff promotion criterial. This work should be complemented a review of staff supervision and appraisal system with the aim to hike up performance and accountability especially for senior staff. We need to institute a verifiable system of support and accountability particularly in the administrative functions to raise standards of work. A Project Team will take this matter forward within the framework of the Re-Engineering programme.
The SPQA Directorate will also strengthen student and lecturer feedbacks on learning/working environments and service quality.
- Income generation through Extra-Mural, eLearning Programmes and fees collection
There is need to devise a strategy for the University to be more proactive with income generation n and move away from being over dependent on government support. The extramural programme as demonstrated by IPAM offers a tangible solution. Also, eLearning can bring in more income form a much larger student population with much lesser resources compared with face-to-face learning in physical classrooms. With effective use of the LMS (portal) for coursework and other lecturer-student interactions, students who are not paying fees can be easily tracked and excluded. This will in turn cause such students to pay their fees. The SPQA Directorate will work closely with various teams to support income generation activities.
- Harmonisation of undergraduate admissions requirement and postgraduate assessment systems.
There has been issues at departmental level regarding London O’Level as an entry requirement USL. Also, it has been observed that the credit hours assigned for postgraduate modules vary at least for some courses at FBC and IPAM and probable (across departments in the same college. This should be addressed as a matter of urgency. Furthermore, we do not have a system for appraising different categories of postgraduate programmes. In many universities, MPhil and PhD students are expected to publish in reputable journals as a requirement for graduation. This should be explored for USL and can be a way of ensuring effective supervision.
- Academic succession and capacity planning.
We have an aging professorial group at USL. Despite having many PhD holders, our level of publishing academic work when compared with top universities in the sub-region is low. Lecturers need more support to pursue terminal degrees. Without a succession plan, the University can easily exhaust its reliance on many these professors who have sacrificed enjoying retirement. This situation leaves the University very vulnerable in replacing retired academics and filling academic positions such as HoDs and Deans with qualified staff. There is urgent need to have succession plan for academic posts.
- Review of course nomenclatures and development of new Programmes to meet market demands.
There are departments in the University that attracts alarmingly very few students compared to having many lecturers. Some of these departments rely mainly on having students who have not been successful with their first choice. More than anything else, it’s not the course contents that is the problem but the nomenclatures of the programmes and how they are packaged. The SPQA Directorate will work with affected departments to address low intakes that are hinged on course nomenclature.
- Promoting integration (unitary system) with decentralization
We need to strongly promote the usl.edu.sl emails for all staff and discard college specific email addresses. There is need to clear policies to promote integration even though the colleges – FBC, IPAM and COMAHS operate as semi-autonomous entities. This can be achieved through greater inter-college collaboration in research, teaching and use of certain resources. Why not have a single booking system of venues for example.
- USL visibility – upscaling public perception and university ranking
The university is doing a lot of good work that is not visible to key stakeholders and the general public. Research activities and a good number of laudable projects are unavailable on our website or communicated effectively to the public. The SPQA Directorate will work with the Media and ICT Directorates to ways to promote greater visibility for our excellent works. More than anything else, we been a robust website infrastructure that enables. Senior staff to post certain information directly on the website on conjunction with the Media Director rather than be entirely dependent on a single webmaster.
Director, SPQA/Re-Engineering Lead, USL