Assessment panels in Flanders
The assessments constitute a form of external quality assurance and are all conducted on a peer review basis. NVAO appoints a panel of external, independent experts who enter into dialogue with the institution or programme to be assessed. On the basis of this dialogue, the panel formulates a recommendation to the Board of NVAO, which then decides to endorse or not to endorse the quality, or to submit a recommendation to the Flemish government.
Each panel features a combination of specific forms of expertise, which are required to conduct an authoritative assessment: specialist expertise, international expertise, practical expertise, educational expertise, quality assessment or audit expertise, and student-related expertise. The panel members do not need to be experts in a single field; each panel member may contribute multiple forms of expertise.
The panel members are expected to be capable of conducting a substantive and in-depth interview with the programme or institution within the context of the assessment. Furthermore, each panel member must be independent. This means that they must not have any interest, in either a positive or a negative sense, in the result of the assessment.