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Appendix 5. Pre-Site Visit Interviews: Questions for Administrators

Module by: Phuong Nguyen. E-mail the author

Observations on Undergraduate Education

in Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, and Physics

at Select Universities in Vietnam

PLEASE PROVIDE THE FOLLOWING:

Name:

Title:

Faculty/Department:

University:

Phone: E-mail:

Educational background:

- Bachelor’s in [subject]From:

- Master’s in From:

- Doctorate in From:

Note: Your participation is voluntary. We ask for you to identify yourself so that we can list your name as a contributor to the project. We assure you that your responses will be kept anonymous and that what you say will be summarized into a general statement. We appreciate your complete honesty in answering each item in order to provide an accurate picture of higher education practices in Vietnam. Thank you for your help!

Please confirm with your signature below so that we can list your name and use the information that you provide:

______________________________________________________ Date: ________________

Directions: The questions below are provided for your review in advance of a meeting with you in person. During a personal interview, Dr. Phuong will record your answers to the questions. In addition to your comments about your particular situation, we appreciate your adding answers also from a general perspective, if possible. Please provide copies and samples if available.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

1. INSTITUTION

  • Describe the line of reporting within the University and in relation to MOET, other related ministries, and relevant authorities. If possible, please provide an organizational chart.
  • What are your University’s various locations, enrollments, and yearly academic schedule?
  • To which outstanding university do you compare yourself in Vietnam and in the region?

2. DEPARTMENT

  • What is your department’s strategic plan, including goals and expected outcomes? If possible, please provide your most recent strategic plan.
  • Describe the line of reporting within the department. If possible, please provide an organizational chart.
  • Summarize your duties within the department.
  • How were you selected for your current administrative position? How long is your term?
  • Describe the composition of the faculty members.
    • Number of faculty members at different ranks (i.e., lecturer, senior lecturer, associate professor, professor)
    • Number of faculty members with highest degree of Bachelor’s, of Master’s, of Ph..D.
    • Names of universities from which faculty members received degrees (those with Bachelor’s? With Master’s? With Ph.D.s?)
    • What percentage of faculty are trained overseas?
    • What percentage of faculty are full-time and part-time?
    • At what other universities do faculty members teach in addition to their full-time job?
  • How do you assign a faculty member to teach certain courses (i.e., based on what qualifications, background, years of experience)?
  • What types of teaching methods do faculty members use (lecture, group work, research project)?
  • Do faculty members get any help with their responsibilities (i.e., teaching assistants, research assistants)?
  • Describe the compensation and reward structure for faculty.
    • What is the salary range for administrators and faculty members?
    • How does one get promoted and get tenure?
    • What are the incentives for improvement?
    • How are exemplary contributions by faculty members and administrators rewarded?
    • Do faculty receive sabbatical leave; how often, how long?
  • Is the degree program assessed? By whom? How often? What is the process? How is a program review conducted?
  • Describe the composition of the student body.
    • Can students outside of this department take courses in this department? If not, why?
    • What is the typical class size for courses in this department?
    • What are the completion rates of entering undergraduates? Specifically, what percentage of students drop out after 1 year, 2 years, and 3 years? What are the primary reasons for one to drop out?
    • How long is the average time for a student to complete the degree? What is the shortest and longest time?
  • Describe your typical day (approximate hours for each activity).

3. DEGREE PROGRAMS

  • List requirements for the bachelor’s degree in [subject area]. Please address core curriculum (core courses) and electives (optional courses), the number of credit hours, and lecture versus lab courses.
  • Please describe the credit system, if applicable, in your department.
  • How many courses/credits are students required to take in one semester/term? In one year (over 12 months)?
  • How many hours per week do courses meet?
  • How much time is expected for homework outside of the meeting time for each course?

4. CURRICULUM AND SYLLABI

  • How is the curriculum developed and approved? If possible, please provide a copy of the curriculum.
  • How much can faculty members/ departments make changes to the curriculum? (a lot, some, very little, not at all)
  • Do you use curriculum mapping in planning course sequences and content? If so, how?
  • What is the standard format for a syllabus? Please provide samples.
  • How often are the syllabi revised?
  • What is the proportion of theory and practice in the curriculum? In the syllabi? Is this adequate?
  • How often are foreign books and materials (i.e., curricula, syllabi, etc.) used? (frequently, occasionally, never)
  • Do students receive copies of the curriculum and syllabi? If so, in what format and when?
  • In your opinion, what part of the curriculum (overall program) is most useful to students? What are the students most proud of?
  • Do faculty share and exchange syllabi with other faculty members in the same department? How about with departments in other universities?

5. ASSESSMENT OF STUDENT LEARNING

  • How often is student learning assessed (i.e., weekly tests, mid-term exams, semester or year-end final exams)?
  • What types of assessments (i.e., in-class tests, homework, group projects, presentations) are used to evaluate students?
  • What types of tests are used (i.e., multiple choice, short answer, essay, and/or oral exam)?
  • What grading standards do faculty members use? How are students informed of grading standards?
  • What percentage of the syllabi is assessed in tests?
  • At the end of a course, how does a faculty member assess student learning outcomes with the goals set in the course syllabus and overall curriculum?
  • If you could make one change to further develop student learning, what would that be?

6. EVALUATION OF FACULTY TEACHING

  • What types of assessments are used to evaluate faculty teaching, who does the evaluation (i.e., self, students, peers, supervisors), and how often? Please provide sample forms.
  • Are these assessments used to reward faculty? If so how? (e.g., promotion, increased salary)
  • Are assessment results used for further development/improvement of faculty teaching? If so, how?
  • If you could make one change to further develop faculty teaching effectiveness, what would that be?

7. TEACHING AND LEARNING RESOURCES

  • Please describe the availability of educational aids, materials, textbooks, and resources (i.e., computers, Internet access, reference materials, journals)?
    • How many computers are available (to faculty, to students)? How many computers with high-speed Internet access? Are they free for faculty, for students?
    • Do faculty have their own copies of the textbooks (all, some, none)? Do students have their own copies (all, some, none)?
    • If copies of textbooks are in the library, how do students have access to them (must read in library, can copy, can check books out)?
    • If no text books are available, do faculty develop course notes? Are the course notes available on the Web?
    • How do faculty and students access the latest professional journals (Internet, library subscription, interlibrary loan)?
  • What student services are available (i.e., bookstore, canteen for meals, counseling, job placement assistance, health facilities, library)?
  • What support structures are available for students who need additional help? (i.e., remedial courses, learning centers, writing center, etc.). If available, how are they funded and staffed?

8. HOW MUCH, AND WHAT KIND OF, INTERACTION EXISTS BETWEEN

  • Faculty members and students (frequent, occasional, never)
  • Faculty members (frequent, occasional, never)
  • Faculty members and administrators (frequent, occasional, never)
  • Faculty members and alumni (frequent, occasional, never)
  • Faculty members and industries, companies (frequent, occasional, never)

9. RESEARCH

  • What percentage of faculty conduct research?
  • What is the source of research funding? (e.g., University ( %), government ( %), private ( %)?
  • Are faculty members encouraged to conduct research? If so, how?
  • What research projects are underway now among faculty in [subject]?
  • Is research incorporated into courses? If so, how is this done?
  • Are students involved in doing the research?
  • Is joint research with other faculty and/or students encouraged? If so, how?
  • Are paid positions available to students to do research toward their degree?

10. OTHER ACTIVITIES

  • Describe the support provided by the University for faculty professional development, including the funding and staffing, to assist faculty in:
    • pedagogy;
    • curriculum development;
    • assessment of student learning; and
    • program/curriculum assessment.
  • Are faculty members encouraged to participate in committees and other services to the University? If so, how?
  • How many committees are faculty members expected to serve on? Describe the types of committees and services.

11. STUDENT LEARNING

  • How many hours per week do students meet with the teacher for a course (i.e., contact hours in class per week for each course)?
  • How many hours per week are students expected to study (for each class) outside class (i.e., homework assignments, etc.)? (1-2, 3-5, 6-10)
  • How often do students meet with faculty members outside of the class for help and mentoring? (frequently, occasionally, rarely, never)
  • How much is English as a foreign language required in your department? [Are the students required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)? If so, what is the average score?]

12. FINANCIAL ISSUES

  • How much tuition and fees do students pay for one semester? for one year?
  • How do students fund their studies
    • by working besides going to school ( %)
    • by getting a scholarship and/ or financial aid from the University ( %)
    • by getting a scholarship and/ or financial aid from the government ( %)

13. JOB PREPARATION

  • Does the University help students find jobs upon graduation? If so, how?
  • What percentage of your graduates are employed in government, industry, and academia (teaching, research)?
  • What percentage of your graduates get jobs within one month of graduation? Six months? One year?

14. OTHER COMMENTS

THANK YOU FOR YOUR COOPERATION!

If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Nguyễn Thị Thanh Phượng

on her cell phone: 0909-388-227 or by e-mail: phuongnguyen@vef.gov

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