Issues and trends in quality assurance and accreditation a case study from iran
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Issues and Trends in Quality Assurance and Accreditation: A case study from Iran. By Abbas Bazargan University of Tehran Presented at UNESCO FORUM Paris:17-18 Octobre,2002. Content. 1.A definition of quality assurance 2.Typology of quality assurance practices

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Issues and Trends in Quality Assurance and Accreditation: A case study from Iran

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Issues and Trends in Quality Assurance and Accreditation:A case study from Iran

By

Abbas Bazargan

University of Tehran

Presented at

UNESCO FORUM

Paris:17-18 Octobre,2002


Content

1.A definition of quality assurance

2.Typology of quality assurance practices

3.Self-evaluation process as a distinguishing factor

in quality assurance practices

4.Self-evaluation in Type (C) quality assurance: The case of Iran

5.Impact of Type ( C) on quality improvement

in higher education

6.Issues in Q.A. in higher education in Iran


Program Approval/Accreditationin Iran

* Higher education programs are approved by either the Ministry of Science, Research and Technology or the Ministry of Health, Treatment and Medical Education before being implemented

* No accreditation process after the start of the programs.


A definition of quality assurance:

Quality assurance may be defined as a process that examines the aims, structure, inputs, processes, products, outputs and projected outcomes of higher education systems (programs / institutions); maintains, improves and enhances quality.


Philosophical Frameworks Underlying Quality Assurance Approaches

  • Empirical- analytical (positivism and post-positivism)

    Formulating evaluation questions, finding answers empirically against pre-established standards

  • Interpretivism/ constructivis

    Attempt to recognize patterns of quality in the program/institution

  • Critical

    Understand the practices and empower faculty members to transform teaching and research processes to the reach the desires conditions.


Important Dimensions to Distinguish Among Q.A. Types

  • Standards applied to judge the quality

  • Structure of team members in self-evaluation process

  • Structure of team members in external evaluation process

  • Dissemination of Reports

  • Outcomes of the Q.A. process


3.Typology of Q.A. PracticesTable3.1:Types of Q.A. by Major Dimensions


Self-Evaluation Process: A distinguishing factor of type (A) and types (B)&(C)

* Self-evaluation in types (A) &(B) is carried out by the managers and a few faculty members; managerial judgment about quality.

* Self-evaluation in type (C) is carried out through participation and engagement of all faculty members; they make a collective judgment about the quality , based on the objectives which are delineated by themselves regarding the( program, institution) ;


Self-Evaluation in Type (C) Quality Assurance: The case of Iran

  • Promotion of trust and cooperation among faculty members to improve the quality

  • Applying critical theory as a philosophical framework to address evaluation tasks

  • Evaluation conducted to understand the practices and effects of power and inequality, in the program under evaluation, and to empower faculty members in transforming the program conditions.


Impact of Type (A) on quality improvementin the pilot project in Iran

  • Motivation of faculty members to get enthusiastic and engaged to cooperate in clarification of departmental/program objectives

  • Transparency with regard to departmental / program weaknesses

  • Exploring ways to overcome weaknesses

  • Responsiveness with regard to academic duties

  • Participation in strategic planning of the department and commitment to bring about the intended results.


Trend of Q.A. in higher education in Iran

  • Pilot project in six departments of medical education in 1996

  • Departmental reflection on mission, vision, and objectives of the department

  • Capacity development for change

  • SWOT analysis

  • Ownership of evaluation

  • Drawing-up a twelve-step-model of self-evaluation

  • Increasing interest in applying Q.A. through out higher education system.


Issues in Q.A. in higher education in Iran

  • Seeing that all faculty members and chairperson are committed to quality

  • Ownership of the confidential self-evaluation report

  • Following-up the results of self-evaluation

  • Establishing a system of external evaluation.


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