Global | 21 January 2019




“In what way can self-assessment lead to the development of the eagerness to learn that is necessary for the Rotterdam Academy to achieve organizational development and what type of organizational coaching suits this the best”.

 

This research deals with the question in what way self-assessment can lead to the development of a general capability to learn of an educational institution in short-term, cyclic higher education. The capability to learn that is necessary to design the exchange relation of this organization and its environment. Additionally, this thesis deals with the question how guidance can support the start of this developmental process.

The Rotterdam Academy (RAc) has proven to be of significant importance as a case study because it provided a good insight in organizational studies as a process within short-term, cyclic higher education. The ultimate goal of this research is to gain insight in the criteria for an organizational design. The design is the central focus of this research, whereas the research itself is merely a service tool. The RAc is an independent institution within the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences where students follow two-year Associate Degree courses. This duration of two years makes a critical reflection on the intensive exchange relation with the environment of significant importance. This enquires a much more dynamic process in which feedback and reflection continuously steer the exchange of knowledge with the environment. A process in which organization itself executes the assessment.

Based on this research, one can conclude that self-assessment can have a steering role for the RAc when this type of assessment is seen as a style of work that offers attention for a position that first and foremost initiates the needs of the environment and uses that to detect normative guidelines that are ought to be used internally. Secondly, one can see this form of assessment as a style of work with an evaluating function, in regards to those normative guidelines. Based on this research, both these functions can be defined as the third level of learning of the organization.

For the RAc, shaping the self-assessment means to design the level that creates triple-loop learning. This level can be mastered by explicitly reflecting the underlying learning processes. These are the learning processes within an organization where comments about the current state of affairs are brought up for discussion, as well as the processes within an organization where one can learn from concrete experiences. The criteria for the design of the organization of the RAc as an educational community have to be examined with regards to the interaction between the initiation and evaluation of the normative guidelines as a steering principle, and the discussion of processes and the capability to learn from concrete actions as the process to govern.

The start of this development showed characteristics that highlight all that goes on. Through this research, as well as the attachment of significance, many insights were achieved. At their core, both these elements can be seen as interventions that fit with the assumption that change is created through energy and vitality. With the next step, this process is better suited for the organization of a system in which self-assessment is a leading principle for the general capability to learn. This deals with learning and developing. Accompanying interventions tend to deal more with the assumption that people have to change because they can learn and develop.



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