Audit of the Lapland University of Applied Sciences 2023

Higher education

Lapland University of Applied Sciences passed FINEEC's audit – strengths include long-term and systematic regional cooperation based on partnership agreements

Lapland UAS passed the audit conducted by the Finnish Education Evaluation Centre (FINEEC). The audit team praised the UAS for its long-term and systematic stakeholder cooperation based on partnership agreements and for the quality work that is an integral part of its everyday operations.

Partnership agreements provide a solid basis for stakeholder cooperation

Lapland UAS is a highly sought-after partner in its operating area and an important and necessary actor in terms of the region’s development. The strategy of Lapland UAS is in line with the strategies of the various actors in the region and provides excellent support for achieving the shared objectives. The partnership agreements Lapland UAS has concluded with its key partners define the forms of cooperation in detail and enable long-term, systematic and goal-oriented cooperation with strategically selected contracting partners. 

  • The partnership agreement model helps Lapland UAS to ensure and increase its societal interaction and impact. The partnership agreement model benefits both the University of Applied Sciences and the stakeholders, comments Timo Mattila, Chair of the audit team and Vice President of Education at Satakunta University of Applied Sciences. 

The contracting partners receive information on the activities of Lapland UAS in regular meetings based on the partnership agreement model. However, according to the audit team, Lapland UAS should develop its communication about its activities to all stakeholders, making it more active and open. This applies especially to communicating about the RDI activities and their results. 

Quality work is an integral part of everyday activities at the UAS

The management and staff of Lapland UAS are committed to the quality system and continuous development. 

  • During the audit visit, the audit team formed a strong understanding that quality work and operational development are part of the staff's daily work. However, the culture of engaging students in the quality work still needs reinforcement and guidance, says Mattila. 

The clear and functional processes of Lapland UAS make uniform operating practices and the development of the operation possible. Processes are also developed in an agile manner based on the received feedback. The information systems developed for the UAS support comprehensive development of the processes.     

Guidance processes and systems support the guidance of students and the progress of their studies

The processes and information systems developed especially to meet the needs of Lapland UAS strongly support the planning of teaching and the guidance of students. The progress of studies is supported in many different ways, and up-to-date and versatile monitoring data is used to react promptly to possible deviations in the progress of studies. However, according to the audit team, Lapland UAS must ensure that guidance processes are implemented in a uniform manner in practice in all fields of education and all campus locations. Attention must also be paid to the accessibility of uniform support and welfare services.

One of the strengths of Lapland UAS is the Master School operating model, which enables flexible and individual study paths for students, thus supporting the progress of their studies. Master School makes multidisciplinary workplace-oriented development of education possible and provides opportunities for continuous learning.   

Lapland University of Applied Sciences passed the audit conducted by the Finnish Education Evaluation Centre (FINEEC) and was awarded a quality label for six years. Passing the audit shows that the activities and the quality system of the university of applied sciences meet both the national criteria and the Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area. The audit focuses on the higher education institution’s procedures for maintaining and enhancing the quality of education, research and societal interaction. The audit criteria have been published in FINEEC's Audit manual for higher education institutions.

The audit report is available on FINEEC’s audit platform

Niina Nurkka

Niina Nurkka

Senior Evaluation Advisor
Higher education
+358 29 533 5573 Helsinki