Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research Education to Work Transition Project- Additional Financing (E2WTP-AF)
Quality Improvement Fund-QIF
Terms of Reference for
the Selection of an individual consultant to evaluate the Quality Improvement Fund Component (QIF) on the Higher Education Sector and the Labor Market
The Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research has received a grant from the World Bank, for the benefit of Education to Work Transition Project-Additional Financing. A major component of this project is The Quality Improvement Fund (QIF) , which is overseen by QIF Board . The main objective of QIF is to provide support for improving the quality of Palestinian tertiary education institutions and programs in the aim of developing market-driven programs in line with international standards, developing income-generating programs, and enhancing teaching practices and methodologies. QIF is established on a competitive basis, open to eligible tertiary institutions in Palestine. QIF is being administered out of the MOHE by a small staff accountable to a centralized Board representative of appropriate stakeholders.
Objective of the Consultancy:
The Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research is considering the selection of a qualified individual consultant to assess the impact of the 27 projects implemented in the following Tertiary Education Institutions in West Bank and Gaza under the Quality Improvement Fund component of the Education to Work Transition project- Additional Financing – Cycle 3 and 4 as well as to providing guidance and support to the Quality Improvement Fund Unit (QIF):
Gaza Tertiary Institutions:
- University of Palestine
- Islamic University of Gaza
- University College of Applied Sciences
- Gaza Community College for Tourism Studies
- Al-Azhar University
- College of Intermediate Studies
- Gaza University
West Bank Tertiary Institutions:
- Palestine Polytechnic University
- Modern University College
- An Najah National University
- Al Quds University
- Palestine Technical University – Kadoori
- Palestine Ahliya University
- Palestine Technical College – Alaroub
- Bethlehem Bible College
- Dar al-Kalima University College of Arts & Culture
- Hebron University
- Birzeit University
The study shall focus on reviewing and analyzing all the projects under both cycles of QIF component for the purpose of generating recommendations that will contribute to the improvement of higher education. Moreover, the study shall focus on assessing the impact of implementing the QIF projects on the projects’ target groups, the labor market, the beneficiary institution/s programs, partners and staff.
Main Tasks, Responsibilities & Scope of Work:
The main tasks of the consultancy will be to conduct an empirical assessment of the QIF projects & their Impact using a combination of qualitative research techniques and analysis of collected documents, data and reports, the consultant shall include the following in this assignment:
- Develop a detailed action plan and schedule for work. Draft will be shared with PCU team and feedback will be incorporated by the consultant to the satisfaction of the PCU team before starting work.
- Review all relevant documents related to the projects implemented under cycles 3 & 4 of QIF. This includes but not limited to, QIF manual, proposals of the awarded projects, progress reports and studies produced under each granted project.
- Assess the procedures followed in implementing the projects.
- Assess the duties and contributions of the different parties/partners.
- Assess the role of the QIF Board by examining the efficiency of the QIF Board policies and procedures in discussing, approving and awarding the submitted QIF proposals.
- Assess the impact of each individual project on participating institutions’, targeted program, partnering institutions form the private sector; enrolled students, graduates and/ or other relevant stakeholders.
- Gather feedback from target communities and participating TEIs and partners as to perception, strengths and weaknesses of the conducted projects.
- Facilitate a process to capture lessons learned. This will help the PCU to replicate the good work and improve project service delivery.
- Analyze existing and potential opportunities for strengthening project’s delivery mechanism and generating recommendations that will contribute to the development of implementing future QIF cycles.
The consultant will carry out his/her work for all of the TEIs mentioned above; through data and documents collection, an analytical review process, conducting site visits or virtual meetings, interviews, focus groups (4-5 focus groups per TEI)with students, graduates, partners, TEI’s staff and other relevant stakeholders and carrying out workshops and accordingly submit all deliverables as per the TOR. The approach should be participatory and inclusive.
Expected Output and Reporting Deliverables:
The Consultant should inform the PCU periodically on progress achieved against an agreed action plan for the entire assignment. Specifically, the Consultant is required to submit the following reports:
- An inception report with a detailed & clear action plan outlining the scope of work, approach & methodology for executing the assignment including a detailed timetable. This plan shall be submitted for review and approval by PCU within 14 days after the signature of the contract before commencement of the work.
- A preliminary draft assessment report with an outline analysis and initial conclusions with presentation of findings to the PCU, QIF Board and MOHE. Presentation of the key findings should be included in the draft report.
- Final completion report in both languages (English& Arabic). The report shall include a comprehensive description of QIF component, impact on the higher education sector, link with the labor market and recommendations for improvement of QIF operation.
- Workshops: The consultant is expected to conduct the following workshops throughout the assignment life time, for which relevant power point presentations in Arabic and English should be prepared.
- The first workshop to present the findings to the QIF board and MOHE.
- The second workshop shall be to disseminate the final recommendations to the tertiary Education Institutes.
Required Qualifications, Skills, knowledge and Competencies
A highly qualified individual consultant shall undertake the assignment who shall possess the following minimum qualifications:
- At least holding a master degree in Quality Assurance, Education Evaluation, Policy Analysis, or any other relevant field.
- Previous proven experience in design and leading evaluation; data analysis skills; knowledge of the regional and institutional context in the Tertiary Education in Palestine and/or the region.
- Minimum 5 years of experience in quantitative and qualitative assessment and monitoring and evaluation.
- Good communication and writing skills in English and Arabic.
- Considerable experience in undertaking similar reviews and a proven track record in conducting similar assignments.
Time Frame & Level of effort:
The expected level of effort is about 65 working days within a time frame of 7 months.
The consultancy is expected to commence on June 1st, 2021 and to be completed on December 31, 2021.
Contract Type: Lump sum Contract.