The books in this series are written primarily for two types of clientele: those engaged in educational planning and administration, in developing as well as developed countries; and those, such as senior government officials and policy-makers, seeking a more general understanding of educational planning and how it relates to national development. They are intended to be of use either for private study or in formal training programmes.
External Quality Assurance in Higher Education: Making Choices
External quality assurance (EQA) has become one of the most important items on the policy agendas of higher education systems across the world. Public authorities are finding themselves compelled to assess whether their traditional structures for quality assurance are still valid, and whether they should create new mechanisms.
Much experimentation has already taken place in this area and there are many approaches to EQA, based on principles such as accountability, compliance with standards and quality improvement. Different mechanisms may be used, including accreditation, assessment and quality audit, each of which may target a particular sub-segment of the higher education system.
This publication discusses the different options available. It intends to be of practical use for national decision-makers who are faced with the challenge of designing an EQA system that not only corresponds to international 'good practice', but is also in line with national policy goals. Researchers should find it useful when identifying issues and concerns of policy-makers in the area of quality assurance.