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Quality assurance in higher education: a Hong Kong perspective

Tsui, C.B.S.C.; (2009) Quality assurance in higher education: a Hong Kong perspective. Doctoral thesis, UCL (University College London).

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Abstract

Evaluation, assessment and assurance of academic quality are intrinsic to higher education. Following pressures and forces caused by expansion of higher education, diversification as well fiscal constraints and changing societal contexts, formalized quality assessment began to evolve during 1980s to 1990s in different parts of the world. Nevertheless, the new managerialism, calling for accountability, efficiency and change, has aroused controversies in higher education. By using key informant interviews and literature reviews, this study attempted to evaluate ‘What constitute quality (ies) in higher education? and Why quality assurance has been controversial in higher education?'. Following the study, it was identified that there were three major categories of controversies: namely, (a) quality as a controversy of language, (b) quality as a controversy of power, and (c) quality as a controversy of change. These controversies were mainly caused by conflicts of the professional culture, against managerialism, which was imported from business in the 1980’s. This study recommends that in today’s knowledge economy, coupled with globalisation and internationalization of higher education, the society and the higher education sector should adopt a collaborative approach to raise education to the fore. As for meanings of quality, there are diverse views and a growing body of knowledge eliciting concepts of quality. The next step is to evaluate how different meanings of quality are conceptualized and operationalised. There have been several phases of quality assurance, with changing faces of accountability, in higher education. It is estimated that with various changing forces, and initiatives in the past two decades, higher education governance should have changed in some ways. This study calls for more organizational studies on the field so as to improve policies and practices in higher education.

Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Title:Quality assurance in higher education: a Hong Kong perspective
Language:English
Additional information:Authorisation for digitisation not received
UCL classification:UCL > VP Education > CALT (Centre for the Advancement of Learning and Teaching)

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