1.2 Specification of the intended learning outcomes

The programme’s mission and vision lay the foundation for the articulation of the Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs). The BSc MS&T programme educates students to acquire four sets of ILOs, that are oriented towards achieving the academic and professional outcomes on different levels. The academic orientation provides the students with the theoretical and social science research knowledge base specific for the field of Public Administration (ILOs 1 and 2), as well as the design and problem-solving competences in an integrated way (ILO3), specific to the TOM model. Specific attention is dedicated to the development of academic and professional skills (ILO4) which a Public Administration student needs in order to align to the 21st century professional skills.

The ILOs are formulated on a level specific for achieving a Bachelor level competence. The bachelor level competences are sufficiently achieved through providing the students with a) the bachelor-level public administration knowledge-base in the field; and b) the development of research competences under supervision, elementary problem-solving skills and design skills. The ILOs specify that the thesis work consists of a research project carried out under supervision.

  • 1. Knowledge-base of the field of Management, Society and Technology

    1.1 A student has knowledge and comprehension of:
    (a) the interdisciplinary foundations of public administration: policy, governance, and public management.
    (b) the multi-level nature of public administrations and governance - the local, regional, national, European, and the global level.

    1.2 A student is able to analyse, evaluate and reflect on modern socio-technological challenges from a public administration perspective.

    1.3 A student has knowledge and comprehension of the development of ideas in the field of public administration and philosophy of science.

  • 2. Social scientific research in public administration

    2.1 A student is able to perform, under supervision, all aspects of a social scientific study in the field of public administration:
    (a) formulate a scientific research question and consistent sub-questions that produces new knowledge in the field.
    (b) formulate testable hypotheses that are logically derived from an appropriate theoretical framework.
    (c) develop a feasible research design.
    (d) carry out a simple research, using appropriate methods and techniques of the social sciences for data collection and -analysis.
    (e) reflect on the results of a study—including their own—in terms of the research design, hypotheses, theory, and the research problem.

    2.2 A student is able to, under supervision, interpret and evaluate the results of social science research, and form a well-reasoned opinion in the case of missing or incomplete data.

  • 3. Analysis of challenges to society and to public administration and design

    3.1 A student is able to employ a systematic approach to theorizing and problem solving. A student is able to use that approach to identify and reformulate ill-structured societal challenges as a (combination of) a policy, a governance, and a public management problem.

    3.2 A student can analyse a societal challenge, combining the knowledge base of public administration with knowledge from relevant disciplines.

    3.3 A student has the creative skills to design a solution to the reformulated societal problem in terms of policy, governance, and public management—taking into account the socio-technical context and the implementation and evaluation of the design.

    3.4 A student is able to reflect on (changes in) the ethical, political, and societal implications of the designed policy-, governance-, or public management-solution.

  • 4. Academic and professional skills

    4.1 A student has basic analytical skills:
    (a) A student is able to recognise modes of reasoning, including deduction, induction, and analogy.
    (b) A student is able to logically reason, exchange, and justify arguments in a critical, open, and constructive way—both with specialists in the field of public administration and non-specialists.

    4.2 A student is able, with supervision, to critically self-reflect on his/her own thinking, decision-making, and acting—and to adjust these on the basis of this reflection. A student is able, with supervision, to spot gaps in his/her own knowledge, and to revise and extend it through study, using information skills and literature study. A student is able to understand the important debates and new developments in the field.

    4.3 A student is able to effectively communicate in the English language about his/her work and the work of others (specialist and non-specialist audiences), including the provision and reception of constructive feedback: (a) verbally (speaking in public, debates, discussions); (b) in writing (papers, reports, posters).

    4.4 A student is able to:
    (a) perform project-based work in (interdisciplinary and intercultural) teams.
    (b) understand team roles and team dynamics.

    4.5 A student is able to reflect on future career perspectives in the field of public administration.

    4.6 A student is able to comprehend the socio-economic, ethical/normative, and cultural consequences of changes in the knowledge base for society at large—including issues of reflexivity, legitimacy, and moral leadership.

Following the recommendation of the previous accreditation, the ILOs have been reformulated to more closely express the Public Administration specific of the MS&T programme. Content-wise, the PA curriculum is explicitly articulated around the inter-disciplinary cores of public policy, public management and public governance, and expressly aligns to the integrated and design approach. Aligning the curriculum with the programme mission provides a solid basis to define the identity of the MS&T-programme across the other PA-programmes in the field.

In the review process, input has been provided from the work field in multiple ways; this includes an alumni research project conducted around 2017-2018[1.2.1], via guest lectures, and through feedback received from the internship supervisors. A working group reported about the SWOT in March 2023. It reported thirty-one under-exploited opportunities. It stated that the core strength of the BSc and MSc programmes are the quality, uniqueness and future-proofness of the programmes marked by enthusiasm and pride amongst alumni. As a core weakness of the profile, the group indicates the under-exploitation of their unique selling points in its own marketing and communication strategies. The Programme Committee also advised on the formulation of the ILOs. The ILOs have been operationalised through the development of the Learning Lines. The Learning Lines serve as a bridge in the constructive alignment between the ILOs and the Learning Objectives at the module level and are further discussed in section 2.3.

[1.2.1] The report is available upon request.