While respecting university autonomy, this programme is designed to guide their actions and simultaneously strengthen the increasingly significant role that universities must play in assessing teacher performance and developing teacher training and development plans for their staff. The programme is nation-wide with the participation of over 80% of Spanish universities and has become a benchmark of quality recognised by other programmes, including ACADEMIA and AUDIT.
As a point of reference, DOCENTIA uses the recommendations for Quality Assurance at Higher Education Institutions drawn up by the European Association for Quality Assurance in Higher Education (ENQA) in its document entitled 'Quality Assurance Criteria and Directives in the European Higher Education Area’. Of these criteria, 1.4 Quality Assurance of Teaching Personnel, merits special mention. It establishes that institutions must be equipped with suitable means to guarantee that their personnel are qualified and competent to teach.
The phases for executing the DOCENTIA Programme are:
- Phase I: University design of teacher performance assessment manuals according to the model.
- Phase II: External evaluation of the design to verify compliance with DOCENTIA model specifications and criteria.
- Phase III: Implementation of those assessment models receiving positive ratings.
- Phase IV: Evaluation and monitoring of implementation by Agencies. Recommendations prior to Certification.
- Phase V: Certification of teacher performance assessment procedures.