Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 75

Search results for: accreditation

75 Inclusion and Changes of a Research Criterion in the Institute for Quality and Accreditation of Computing, Engineering and Technology Accreditation Model

Authors: J. Daniel Sanchez Ruiz

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The paper explains why and how a research criterion was included within an accreditation system for undergraduate engineering programs, in spite of not being a common practice of accreditation agencies at a global level. This paper is divided into three parts. The first presents the context and the motivations that led the Institute for Quality and Accreditation of Computing, Engineering and Technology Programs (ICACIT) to add a research criterion. The second describes the criterion adopted and the feedback received during 2017 accreditation cycle. The third, the author proposes changes to the accreditation criteria that respond in a pertinent way to the results-based accreditation model and the national context. The author seeks to reconcile an outcome based accreditation model, aligned with the established by the International Engineering Alliance, with the particular context of higher education in Peru.

Keywords: accreditation, engineering education, quality assurance, research

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74 The Importance of Analysis of Internal Quality Management Systems and Self-Examination Processes in Engineering Accreditation Processes

Authors: Wilfred Fritz

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The accreditation process of engineering degree programmes is based on various reports evaluated by the relevant governing bodies of the institution of higher education. One of the aforementioned reports for the accreditation process is a self-assessment report which is to be completed by the applying institution. This paper seeks to emphasise the importance of analysis of internal quality management systems and self-examination processes in the engineering accreditation processes. A description of how the programme fulfils the criteria should be given. Relevant stakeholders all need to contribute in the writing and structuring of the self-assessment report. The last step is to gather evidence in the form of supporting documentation. In conclusion, the paper also identifies learning outcomes in a case study in seeking accreditation from an international relevant professional body.

Keywords: accreditation, governing bodies, self-assessment report, quality management

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73 HKIE Accreditation: A Comparative Study on the Old and New Criteria

Authors: Peter P. K. Chiu

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This paper reports a comparative study of new and old criteria for the professional accreditation of programme by the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers (HKIE). The major change in the criteria is the adoption of the outcome-based accreditation criteria and the use of measurement of attainment of outcomes which is very different from what academic did in the past. This has imposed a lot of difficulty for people in preparation for such exercise. Through this comparative study, the major difference between the two criteria is identified and a methodology is devised to help the academic to handle the issues due to the adoption of the new criteria. Thus it saves a lot of efforts.

Keywords: Hong Kong institution of engineers, outcome-based accreditation, Sydney accord, Washington accord

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72 The Higher Education Accreditation Foreign Experience for Ukraine

Authors: Dmytro Symak

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The experience in other countries shows that, the role of accreditation of higher education as one of the types of quality assurance process for providing educational services increases. This was the experience of highly developed countries such as USA, Canada, France, Germany, because without proper quality assurance process is impossible to achieve a successful future of the nation and the state. In most countries, the function of Higher Education Accreditation performs public authorities, in particular, such as the Ministry of Education. In the US, however, the quality assurance process is independent on the government and implemented by private non-governmental organization - the Council of Higher Education Accreditation. In France, the main body that carries out accreditation of higher education is the Ministry of National Education. As part of the Bologna process is the mutual recognition and accreditation of degrees. While higher education institutions issue diplomas, but the ministry could award the title. This is the main level of accreditation awarded automatically by state universities. In total, there are in France next major level of accreditation of higher education: - accreditation for a visa: Accreditation second level; - recognition of accreditation: accreditation of third level. In some areas of education to accreditation ministry should adopt formal recommendations on specific organs. But there are also some exceptions. Thus, the French educational institutions, mainly large Business School, looking for non-French accreditation. These include, for example, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the Association of MBAs, the European Foundation for Management Development, the European Quality Improvement System, a prestigious EFMD Programme accreditation system. Noteworthy also German accreditation system of education. The primary here is a Conference of Ministers of Education and Culture of land in the Federal Republic of Germany (Kultusministerkonferenz or CCM) was established in 1948 by agreement between the States of the Federal Republic of Germany. Among its main responsibilities is to ensure quality and continuity of development in higher education. In Germany, the program of bachelors and masters must be accredited in accordance with Resolution Kultusministerkonerenz. In Ukraine Higher Education Accreditation carried out the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports of Ukraine under four main levels. Ukraine's legislation on higher education based on the Constitution Ukraine consists of the laws of Ukraine ‘On osvititu’ ‘On scientific and technical activity’, ‘On Higher osvititu’ and other legal acts and is entirely within the competence of the state. This leads to considerable centralization and bureaucratization of the process. Thus, analysis of expertise shined can conclude that reforming the system of accreditation and quality of higher education in Ukraine to its integration into the global space requires solving a number of problems in the following areas: improving the system of state certification and licensing; optimizing the network of higher education institutions; creating both governmental and non-governmental organizations to monitor the process of higher education in Ukraine and so on.

Keywords: higher education, accreditation, decentralization, education institutions

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71 Harmonization of Accreditation Standards in Education of Central Asian Countries: Theoretical Aspect

Authors: Yskak Nabi, Onolkan Umankulova, Ilyas Seitov

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Tempus project about “Central Asian network for quality assurance – CANQA” had been implemented in 2009-2012. As the result of the project, two accreditation agencies were established: the agency for quality assurance in the field of education, “EdNet” in Kyrgyzstan, center of progressive technologies in Tajikistan. The importance of the research studies of the project is supported by the idea that the creation of Central-Asian network for quality assurance in education is still relevant, and results of the International forum “Global in regional: Kazakhstan in Bologna process and EU projects,” that was held in Nur-Sultan in October 2020, proves this. At the same time, the previous experience of the partnership between accreditation agencies of Central Asia shows that recommendations elaborated within the CANQA project were not theoretically justified. But there are a number of facts and arguments that prove the practical appliance of these recommendations. In this respect, joint activities of accreditation agencies of Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan are representative. For example, independent Kazakh agency of accreditation and rating successfully conducts accreditation of Kyrgyz universities; based on the memorandum about joint activity between the agency for quality assurance in the field of education “EdNet” (Kyrgyzstan) and Astana accreditation agency (Kazakhstan), the last one provides its experts for accreditation procedures in EdNet. Exchange of experience among the agencies shows an effective approach towards adaptation of European standards to the reality of education systems of Central Asia with consideration of not only a legal framework but also from the point of European practices view. Therefore, the relevance of the research is identified as there is a practical partnership between accreditation agencies of Central Asian countries, but the absence of theoretical justification of integrational processes in the accreditation field. As a result, the following hypothesis was put forward: “if to develop theoretical aspects for harmonization of accreditation standards, then integrational processes would be improved since the implementation of Bologna process principles would be supported with wider possibilities, and particularly, students and academic mobility would be improved.” Indeed, for example, in Kazakhstan, the total share of foreign students was 5,04% in 2020, and most of them are coming from Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, and if integrational processes will be improved, then this share can increase.

Keywords: accreditation standards in education, Central Asian countries, pedagogical theory, model

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70 Accreditation and Quality Assurance of Nigerian Universities: The Management Imperative

Authors: F. O Anugom

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The general functions of the university amongst other things include teaching, research and community service. Universities are recognized as the apex of learning, accumulating and imparting knowledge and skills of all kinds to students to enable them to be productive, earn their living and to make optimum contributions to national development. This is equivalent to the production of human capital in the form of high level manpower needed to administer the educational society, be useful to the society and manage the economy. Quality has become a matter of major importance for university education in Nigeria. Accreditation is the systematic review of educational programs to ensure that acceptable standards of education, scholarship and infrastructure are being maintained. Accreditation ensures that institution maintain quality. The process is designed to determine whether or not an institution has met or exceeded the published standards for accreditation, and whether it is achieving its mission and stated purposes. Ensuring quality assurance in accreditation process falls in the hands of university management which justified the need for this study. This study examined accreditation and quality assurance: the management imperative. Three research questions and three hypotheses guided the study. The design was a correlation survey with a population of 2,893 university administrators out of which 578 Heads of department and Dean of faculties were sampled. The instrument for data collection was titled Programme Accreditation Exercise scale with high levels of reliability. The research questions were answered with Pearson ‘r’ statistics. T-test statistics was used to test the hypotheses. It was found among others that the quality of accredited programme depends on the level of funding of universities in Nigeria. It was also indicated that quality of programme accreditation and physical facilities of universities in Nigeria have high relationship. But it was also revealed that programme accreditation is positively related to staffing in Nigerian universities. Based on the findings of the study, the researcher recommend that academic administrators should be included in the team of those who ensure quality programs in the universities. Private sector partnership should be encouraged to fund programs to ensure quality of programme in the universities. Independent agencies should be engaged to monitor the activities of accreditation teams to avoid bias.

Keywords: accreditation, quality assurance, national universities commission , physical facilities, staffing

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69 Challenges for Implementing Standards Compliant with Iso/Iec 17025, for Narcotics and DNA Laboratory’s

Authors: Blerim Olluri

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A forensic science laboratory in Kosovo has never been organized at the level of most modern forensic science laboratories. This was made possible after the war of 1999 with the help and support from the United States. The United States Government/ICITAP provided 9.5 million dollars to support this project, this support have greatly benefitted law enforcement in Kosovo. With the establishment of Operative Procedures of Work and the law for Kosovo Agency of Forensic, the accreditation with ISO/IEC 17025 of the KAF labs it becomes mandatory. Since 2012 Laboratory’s DNA/Serology and Narcotics has begun reviewing and harmonizing their procedures according to ISO/IEC 17025. The focus of this work was to create quality manuals, procedures, work instructions, quality documentation and quality records. Furthermore, during this time is done the validation of work methods from scientific qualified personnel of KAF, without any help from other foreign agencies or accreditation body.In October 2014 we had the first evaluation based on ISO 17025 standards. According to the initial report of this assessment we have non conformity in test and Calibration methods method’s, and accommodation and environmental conditions. We identified several issues that are of extreme importance to KAF. One the most important issue is to create a professional group with experts of KAF, which will work in all the obligations, requested from ISO/IEC 17025. As conclusions that we earn in this path of accreditation, are that laboratory’s need to take corrective action, and all nonconformance’s must be addressed and corrective action taken before accreditation can be granted.

Keywords: accreditation, assessment, narcotics, DNA

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68 Progressing Institutional Quality Assurance and Accreditation of Higher Education Programmes

Authors: Dominique Parrish

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Globally, higher education institutions are responsible for the quality assurance and accreditation of their educational programmes (Courses). The primary purpose of these activities is to ensure that the educational standards of the governing higher education authority are met and the quality of the education provided to students is assured. Despite policies and frameworks being established in many countries, to improve the veracity and accountability of quality assurance and accreditation processes, there are reportedly still mistakes, gaps and deficiencies in these processes. An analysis of Australian universities’ quality assurance and accreditation processes noted that significant improvements were needed in managing these processes and ensuring that review recommendations were implemented. It has also been suggested that the following principles are critical for higher education quality assurance and accreditation to be effective and sustainable: academic standards and performance outcomes must be defined, attainable and monitored; those involved in providing the higher education must assume responsibility for the associated quality assurance and accreditation; potential academic risks must be identified and management solutions developed; and the expectations of the public, governments and students should be considered and incorporated into Course enhancements. This phenomenological study, which was conducted in a Faculty of Science, Medicine and Health in an Australian university, sought to systematically and iteratively develop an effective quality assurance and accreditation process that integrated the evidence-based principles of success and promoted meaningful and sustainable change. Qualitative evaluative feedback was gathered, over a period of eleven months (January - November 2014), from faculty staff engaged in the quality assurance and accreditation of forty-eight undergraduate and postgraduate Courses. Reflexive analysis was used to analyse the data and inform ongoing modifications and developments to the assurance and accreditation process as well as the associated supporting resources. The study resulted in the development of a formal quality assurance and accreditation process together with a suite of targeted resources that were identified as critical for success. The research findings also provided some insights into the institutional enablers that were antecedents to successful quality assurance and accreditation processes as well as meaningful change in the educational practices of academics. While longitudinal data will be collected to further assess the value of the assurance and accreditation process on educational quality, early indicators are that there has been a change in the pedagogical perspectives and activities of academic staff and growing momentum to explore opportunities to further enhance and develop Courses. This presentation will explain the formal quality assurance and accreditation process as well as the component parts, which resulted from this study. The targeted resources that were developed will be described, the pertinent factors that contributed to the success of the process will be discussed and early indicators of sustainable academic change as well as suggestions for future research will be outlined.

Keywords: academic standards, quality assurance and accreditation, phenomenological study, process, resources

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67 Program Accreditation as a Change Enterprise in Oman

Authors: Mahmoud Mohamed Emam, Yasser Fathy Hendawy Al-Mahdy

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Higher education institutions (HEIs) in Arab countries have witnessed large scope transformations as a result of embracing globalised practices. The introduction of program academic accreditation in HEIs in the Arab context has been regarded as a change enterprise that has proponents and opponents. In essence, introducing new systems or practices trigger changes that may shatter employees at a given organization. Therefore, it is argued that the interaction between organizational, contextual, and individual-related variables are likely to determine how the organization succeeds in facing resistance to change. This study investigated a mediated-effects model of organizational support and citizenship behavior. The model proposes organizational support as an antecedent of citizenship behavior and commitment to change as a mediator in the organizational support–citizenship behavior relationship. Survey data were collected and analyzed from university faculty (n=221) using structural equation modeling. Findings showed that organizational support significantly contributes to increasedcitizenshipbehaviour and the commitment of university faculty to program accreditation as a change enterprise, which has a significant and direct impact on their citizenship behaviour. We conclude that university-level organizational support shapes faculty’s commitment to change both directly and indirectly. The findings have significant practical implications for HEIs in Arab countries when they introduce new practices that aim at improving institutional effectiveness.

Keywords: organizational support, accreditation, commitment, citizenship behaviour

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66 Student Participation in Higher Education Quality Assurance Processes

Authors: Tomasz Zarebski

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A very important element of the education system is its evaluation procedure. Each education system should be systematically evaluated and improved. Among the criteria subject to evaluation, attention should be paid to the following: structure of the study programme, implementation of the study programme, admission to studies, verification of learning outcomes achievement by students, giving credit for individual semesters and years, and awarding diplomas, competence, experience, qualifications and the number of staff providing education, staff development, and in-service training, education infrastructure, cooperation with social and economic stakeholders on the development, conditions for and methods of improving the internationalisation of education provided as part of the degree programme, supporting learning, social, academic or professional development of students and their entry on the labour market, public access to information about the study programme and quality assurance policy. Concerning the assessment process and the individual assessment indicators, the participation of students in these processes is essential. The purpose of this paper is to analyse the rules of student participation in accreditation processes on the example of individual countries in Europe. The rules of students' participation in the work of accreditation committees and their influence on the final grade of the committee were analysed. Most of the higher education institutions follow similar rules for accreditation. The general model gives the individual institution freedom to organize its own quality assurance, as long as the system lives up to the criteria for quality and relevance laid down in the particular provisions. This point also applies to students. The regulations of the following countries were examined in the legal-comparative aspect: Poland (Polish Accreditation Committee), Denmark (The Danish Accreditation Institution), France (High Council for the Evaluation of Research and Higher Education), Germany (Agency for Quality Assurance through Accreditation of Study Programmes) and Italy (National Agency for the Evaluation of Universities and Research Institutes).

Keywords: accreditation, student, study programme, quality assurance in higher education

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65 A Holistic Conceptual Measurement Framework for Assessing the Effectiveness and Viability of an Academic Program

Authors: Munir Majdalawieh, Adam Marks

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In today’s very competitive higher education industry (HEI), HEIs are faced with the primary concern of developing, deploying, and sustaining high quality academic programs. Today, the HEI has well-established accreditation systems endorsed by a country’s legislation and institutions. The accreditation system is an educational pathway focused on the criteria and processes for evaluating educational programs. Although many aspects of the accreditation process highlight both the past and the present (prove), the “program review” assessment is "forward-looking assessment" (improve) and thus transforms the process into a continuing assessment activity rather than a periodic event. The purpose of this study is to propose a conceptual measurement framework for program review to be used by HEIs to undertake a robust and targeted approach to proactively and continuously review their academic programs to evaluate its practicality and effectiveness as well as to improve the education of the students. The proposed framework consists of two main components: program review principles and the program review measurement matrix.

Keywords: academic program, program review principles, curriculum development, accreditation, evaluation, assessment, review measurement matrix, program review process, information technologies supporting learning, learning/teaching methodologies and assessment

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64 An Expert System for Assessment of Learning Outcomes for ABET Accreditation

Authors: M. H. Imam, Imran A. Tasadduq, Abdul-Rahim Ahmad, Fahd M. Aldosari

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Learning outcomes of a course (CLOs) and the abilities at the time of graduation referred to as Student Outcomes (SOs) are required to be assessed for ABET accreditation. A question in an assessment must target a CLO as well as an SO and must represent a required level of competence. This paper presents the idea of an Expert System (ES) to select a proper question to satisfy ABET accreditation requirements. For ES implementation, seven attributes of a question are considered including the learning outcomes and Bloom’s Taxonomy level. A database contains all the data about a course including course content topics, course learning outcomes and the CLO-SO relationship matrix. The knowledge base of the presented ES contains a pool of questions each with tags of the specified attributes. Questions and the attributes represent expert opinions. With implicit rule base the inference engine finds the best possible question satisfying the required attributes. It is shown that the novel idea of such an ES can be implemented and applied to a course with success. An application example is presented to demonstrate the working of the proposed ES.

Keywords: expert system, student outcomes, course learning outcomes, question attributes

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63 Evaluation of JCI Accreditation for Medical Technology in Saudi Arabian Hospitals: A Study Case of PSMMC

Authors: Hamad Albadr

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Joint Commission International (JCI) accreditation process intent to improve the safety and quality of care in the international community through the provision of education, publications, consultation, and evaluation services. These standards apply to the entire organization as well as to each department, unit, or service within the organization. Medical Technology that contains both medical equipment and devices, is an essential part of health care. Appropriate management of equipment maintenance for ensuring medical technology safe, the equipment life is maximized, and the total costs are minimized. JCI medical technology evaluation and accreditation use standards, intents, and measurable elements. The paper focuses on evaluation of JCI standards for medical technology in Saudi Arabian hospitals: a Study Case of PSMMC that define the performance expectation, structures, or functions that must be in place for a hospital to be accredited by JCI through measurable elements that indicate a score during the survey process that identify the requirements for full compliance with the standard specially through Facility Management and Safety (FMS) section that require the hospital establishes and implements a program for inspecting, testing, and maintaining medical technology and documenting the results, to ensure that medical technology is available for use and functioning properly, the hospital performs and documents; an inventory of medical technology; regular inspections of medical technology; testing of medical technology according to its use and manufacturers’ requirements; and performance of preventive maintenance.

Keywords: joint commission international (JCI) accreditation, medical technology, Saudi Arabia, Saudi Arabian hospitals

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62 Integrating Accreditation and Quality Assurance Exercises into the Quranic School System in the South-Western Nigeria

Authors: Popoola Sulaimon Akorede, Muinat A. Agbabiaka-Mustapha

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The Quranic / piazza school where the rudiments of Islam are being imparted from the teaching of Arabic/ Quranic alphabets which later metamorphosized to higher fundamental principles of Islam is the major determinant of the existence of Islam in any part of south western Nigeria. In other words, one can successfully say that where there is a few or non-existence of such schools in that part of the country, the practice of the religion of Islam would be either very low or not existing at all. However, it has been discovered in the modern worlds that several challenges are militating against the development of these schools and among these challenges are poor admission policy, inadequate facilities such as learning environment and instructional materials, curriculum inadequacy and the management and the administration of the schools which failed to change in order to meet the modern contemporary Educational challenges. The focus of this paper therefore is to improve the conditions of these basic Islamic schools through the introduction of quality assurance and integrating accreditation Exercise to improve their status in order to enhance economic empowerment and to further their educational career in the future so that they will be able to compete favourably among the graduates of conventional universities. The scope of this study is limited to only seven (7) states of yorubaland and with only three (3) proprietors/ schools from each state which are Lagos, Oyo, Ogun, Osun, Ekiti, Ondo and parts of Kwara State. The study revealed that quality assurance as well as accreditation exercise are lacking in all the local Arabic/Quranic schools. Suggestions are proffered towards correcting the anomalies in these schools so that they can meet the modern Educational standard.

Keywords: accreditation, quality assurance, Quranic schools, South-western Nigeria

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61 Adopting Quality Assurance Cycles in Accreditation and Strategic Planning in Higher Education Institutions

Authors: Fouzia Shersad, Sabeena Salam

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Introduction: Quality assurance cycles like RADAR, PDCA, ADRI are cycles of planning, implementation, assessment and improvement. These cycles are required when institutions apply for reaccreditation to accreditation bodies and for adoption of holistic models of institutional quality. Method of Study: The adoption of these cycles at the higher education institutions under the Dubai Medical University is studied to explore the feasibility and the benefits in institutions outcomes. After adequate faculty training, these steps were incorporated in all new activities and embedded in every new initiative and approach undertaken at unit and institutional levels. Conclusions: Improvement in student satisfaction rates and performance levels has been achieved. Wherever weaknesses or deficits have been identified, improvement strategies are implemented in a timely manner. The feedback has become an incentive for faculty members to implement new ideas. Implementation of these cycles for core processes at micro and macro levels have ensured that a systematic mechanism for corrective actions existed. This has led to increasing adoption of innovative initiatives. Another outcome was the recognition through national level awards for the overall institutions which have been certified by external reviewers.

Keywords: higher education, quality, accreditation, institutional improvement

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60 Using ePortfolios to Mapping Social Work Graduate Competencies

Authors: Cindy Davis

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Higher education is changing globally and there is increasing pressure from professional social work accreditation bodies for academic programs to demonstrate how students have successfully met mandatory graduate competencies. As professional accreditation organizations increase their demand for evidence of graduate competencies, strategies to document and recording learning outcomes becomes increasingly challenging for academics and students. Studies in higher education have found support for the pedagogical value of ePortfolios, a flexible personal learning space that is owned by the student and include opportunity for assessment, feedback and reflection as well as a virtual space to store evidence of demonstration of professional competencies and graduate attributes. Examples of institutional uses of ePortfolios include e-administration of a diverse student population, assessment of student learning, and the demonstration of graduate attributes attained and future student career preparation. The current paper presents a case study on the introduction of ePortfolios for social work graduates in Australia as part of an institutional approach to technology-enhanced learning and e-learning. Social work graduates were required to submit an ePortfolio hosted on PebblePad. The PebblePad platform was selected because it places the student at the center of their learning whilst providing powerful tools for staff to structure, guide and assess that learning. The ePortofolio included documentation and evidence of how the student met each graduate competency as set out by the social work accreditation body in Australia (AASW). This digital resource played a key role in the process of external professional accreditation by clearly documenting and evidencing how students met required graduate competencies. In addition, student feedback revealed a positive outcome on how this resource provided them with a consolidation of their learning experiences and assisted them in obtaining employment post-graduation. There were also significant institutional factors that were key to successful implementation such as investment in the digital technology, capacity building amongst academics, and technical support for staff and students.

Keywords: accreditation, social work, teaching, technology

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59 An Investigation on the Internal Quality Assurance System of Higher Education in Indonesia

Authors: Andi Mursidi

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This study aims to investigate why the internal quality assurance system as the basis for the assessment of external quality assurance systems is not well developed at universities in Indonesia. To answer this problem, technical analysis used single instrumental case study with the respondents from ten universities. The findings of this study are the internal quality assurance system that is applied so far (1) only to gain accreditation; and (2) considered as a liability rather than as a necessity to meet the demands of quality standards. It needs strong commitment from internal stakeholders at the college/university to establish internal quality assurance systems that exceed the national standards of higher education. A high quality college/ university will have a good accreditation rank.

Keywords: internal stakeholders, internal quality assurance system, commitment, higher education

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58 The Relation between Organization Cultures with the Quality of Service for Government Hospital in Dusit Area

Authors: Routsukol Sunalai

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This research was to study the relationship between the organizational culture like bureaucratic system, and patronage system in government hospitals with hospital accreditation and its impact on the quality of service in the government hospital accredited. Qualitative research was applied in this study by in-depth interviews with samples containing 20 public welfare service providers, i.e. doctors, nurses and practical nurses and 20 service recipients in the units of study. It was found that the bureaucracy still existed and was evidenced by the structure of the line of command; work systems, clear cut duty divisions, procedures and plans, and the patronage system hindered the quality of service in the government hospitals under the process of development and accreditation. The administrators should encourage and support the creation of a learning process in the organization for self-improvement and work development.

Keywords: hospital in Dusit Area, organization culture, the quality of service, economics and financial engineering

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57 OptiBaha: Design of a Web Based Analytical Tool for Enhancing Quality of Education at AlBaha University

Authors: Nadeem Hassan, Farooq Ahmad

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The quality of education has a direct impact on individual, family, society, economy in general and the mankind as a whole. Because of that thousands of research papers and articles are written on the quality of education, billions of dollars are spent and continuously being spent on research and enhancing the quality of education. Academic programs accredited agencies define the various criterion of quality of education; academic institutions obtain accreditation from these agencies to ensure degree programs offered at their institution are of international standards. This R&D aims to build a web based analytical tool (OptiBaha) that finds the gaps in AlBaha University education system by taking input from stakeholders, including students, faculty, staff and management. The input/online-data collected by this tool will be analyzed on core areas of education as proposed by accredited agencies, CAC of ABET and NCAAA of KSA, including student background, language, culture, motivation, curriculum, teaching methodology, assessment and evaluation, performance and progress, facilities, availability of teaching materials, faculty qualification, monitoring, policies and procedures, and more. Based on different analytical reports, gaps will be highlighted, and remedial actions will be proposed. If the tool is implemented and made available through a continuous process the quality of education at AlBaha University can be enhanced, it will also help in fulfilling criterion of accreditation agencies. The tool will be generic in nature and ultimately can be used by any academic institution.

Keywords: academic quality, accreditation agencies, higher education, policies and procedures

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56 National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Reaccreditation, the Challenges and Advantages: A Qualitative Case Study

Authors: Narottam Puri, Gurvinder Kaur

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Background: The National Accreditation Board for Hospitals & Healthcare Providers (NABH) is India’s apex standard setting accrediting body in health care which evaluates and accredits healthcare organizations. NABH requires accredited organizations to become reaccredited every three years. It is often though that once the initial accreditation is complete, the foundation is set and reaccreditation is a much simpler process. Fortis Hospital, Shalimar Bagh, a part of the Fortis Healthcare group is a 262 bed, multi-specialty tertiary care hospital. The hospital was successfully accredited in the year 2012. On completion of its first cycle, the hospital underwent a reaccreditation assessment in the year 2015. This paper aims to gain a better understanding of the challenges that accredited hospitals face when preparing for a renewal of their accreditations. Methods: The study was conducted using a cross-sectional mixed methods approach; semi-structured interviews were conducted with senior leadership team and staff members including doctors and nurses. Documents collated by the QA team while preparing for the re-assessment like the data on quality indicators: the method of collection, analysis, trending, continual incremental improvements made over time, minutes of the meetings, amendments made to the existing policies and new policies drafted was reviewed to understand the challenges. Results: The senior leadership had a concern about the cost of accreditation and its impact on the quality of health care services considering the staff effort and time consumed it. The management was however in favor of continuing with the accreditation since it offered competitive advantage, strengthened community confidence besides better pay rates from the payors. The clinicians regarded it as an increased non-clinical workload. Doctors felt accountable within a professional framework, to themselves, the patient and family, their peers and to their profession; but not to accreditation bodies and raised concerns on how the quality indicators were measured. The departmental leaders had a positive perception of accreditation. They agreed that it ensured high standards of care and improved management of their functional areas. However, they were reluctant in sparing people for the QA activities due to staffing issues. With staff turnover, a lot of work was lost as sticky knowledge and had to be redone. Listing the continual quality improvement initiatives over the last 3 years was a challenge in itself. Conclusion: The success of any quality assurance reaccreditation program depends almost entirely on the commitment and interest of the administrators, nurses, paramedical staff, and clinicians. The leader of the Quality Movement is critical in propelling and building momentum. Leaders need to recognize skepticism and resistance and consider ways in which staff can become positively engaged. Involvement of all the functional owners is the start point towards building ownership and accountability for standards compliance. Creativity plays a very valuable role. Communication by Mail Series, WhatsApp groups, Quizzes, Events, and any and every form helps. Leaders must be able to generate interest and commitment without burdening clinical and administrative staff with an activity they neither understand nor believe in.

Keywords: NABH, reaccreditation, quality assurance, quality indicators

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55 Strategies for Improving and Sustaining Quality in Higher Education

Authors: Anshu Radha Aggarwal

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Higher Education (HE) in the India has experienced a series of remarkable changes over the last fifteen years as successive governments have sought to make the sector more efficient and more accountable for investment of public funds. Rapid expansion in student numbers and pressures to widen Participation amongst non-traditional students are key challenges facing HE. Learning outcomes can act as a benchmark for assuring quality and efficiency in HE and they also enable universities to describe courses in an unambiguous way so as to demystify (and open up) education to a wider audience. This paper examines how learning outcomes are used in HE and evaluates the implications for curriculum design and student learning. There has been huge expansion in the field of higher education, both technical and non-technical, in India during the last two decades, and this trend is continuing. It is expected that another about 400 colleges and 300 universities will be created by the end of the 13th Plan Period. This has lead to many concerns about the quality of education and training of our students. Many studies have brought the issues ailing our curricula, delivery, monitoring and assessment. Govt. of India, (via MHRD, UGC, NBA,…) has initiated several steps to bring improvement in quality of higher education and training, such as National Skills Qualification Framework, making accreditation of institutions mandatory in order to receive Govt. grants, and so on. Moreover, Outcome-based Education and Training (OBET) has also been mandated and encouraged in the teaching/learning institutions. MHRD, UGC and NBAhas made accreditation of schools, colleges and universities mandatory w.e.f Jan 2014. Outcome-based Education and Training (OBET) approach is learner-centric, whereas the traditional approach has been teacher-centric. OBET is a process which involves the re-orientation/restructuring the curriculum, implementation, assessment/measurements of educational goals, and achievement of higher order learning, rather than merely clearing/passing the university examinations. OBET aims to bring about these desired changes within the students, by increasing knowledge, developing skills, influencing attitudes and creating social-connect mind-set. This approach has been adopted by several leading universities and institutions around the world in advanced countries. Objectives of this paper is to highlight the issues concerning quality in higher education and quality frameworks, to deliberate on the various education and training models, to explain the outcome-based education and assessment processes, to provide an understanding of the NAAC and outcome-based accreditation criteria and processes and to share best-practice outcomes-based accreditation system and process.

Keywords: learning outcomes, curriculum development, pedagogy, outcome based education

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54 A Measurement Instrument to Determine Curricula Competency of Licensure Track Graduate Psychotherapy Programs in the United States

Authors: Laith F. Gulli, Nicole M. Mallory

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We developed a novel measurement instrument to assess Knowledge of Educational Programs in Professional Psychotherapy Programs (KEP-PPP or KEP-Triple P) within the United States. The instrument was designed by a Panel of Experts (PoE) that consisted of Licensed Psychotherapists and Medical Care Providers. Licensure track psychotherapy programs are listed in the databases of the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE); American Psychological Association (APA); Council on Social Work Education (CSWE); and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP). A complete list of psychotherapy programs can be obtained from these professional databases, selecting search fields of (All Programs) in (All States). Each program has a Web link that electronically and directly connects to the institutional program, which can be researched using the KEP-Triple P. The 29-item KEP Triple P was designed to consist of six categorical fields; Institutional Type: Degree: Educational Delivery: Accreditation: Coursework Competency: and Special Program Considerations. The KEP-Triple P was designed to determine whether a specific course(s) is offered in licensure track psychotherapy programs. The KEP-Triple P is designed to be modified to assess any part or the entire curriculum of licensure graduate programs. We utilized the KEP-Triple P instrument to study whether a graduate course in Addictions was offered in Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) programs. Marriage and Family Therapists are likely to commonly encounter patients with Addiction(s) due to the broad treatment scope providing psychotherapy services to individuals, couples and families of all age groups. Our study of 124 MFT programs which concluded at the end of 2016 found that we were able to assess 61 % of programs (N = 76) since 27 % (N = 34) of programs were inaccessible due to broken Web links. From the total of all MFT programs 11 % (N = 14) did not have a published curriculum on their Institutional Web site. From the sample study, we found that 66 % (N = 50) of curricula did not offer a course in Addiction Treatment and that 34 % (N =26) of curricula did require a mandatory course in Addiction Treatment. From our study sample, we determined that 15 % (N = 11) of MFT doctorate programs did not require an Addictions Treatment course and that 1 % (N = 1) did require such a course. We found that 99 % of our study sample offered a Campus based program and 1 % offered a hybrid program with both online and residential components. From the total sample studied, we determined that 84 % of programs would be able to obtain reaccreditation within a five-year period. We recommend that MFT programs initiate procedures to revise curricula to include a required course in Addiction Treatment prior to their next accreditation cycle, to improve the escalating addiction crisis in the United States. This disparity in MFT curricula raises serious ethical and legal consideration for national and Federal stakeholders as well as for patients seeking a competently trained psychotherapist.

Keywords: addiction, competency, curriculum, psychotherapy

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53 Introducing a Video-Based E-Learning Module to Improve Disaster Preparedness at a Tertiary Hospital in Oman

Authors: Ahmed Al Khamisi

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The Disaster Preparedness Standard (DPS) is one of the elements that is evaluated by the Accreditation Canada International (ACI). ACI emphasizes to train and educate all staff, including service providers and senior leaders, on emergency and disaster preparedness upon the orientation and annually thereafter. Lack of awareness and deficit of knowledge among the healthcare providers about DPS have been noticed in a tertiary hospital where ACI standards were implemented. Therefore, this paper aims to introduce a video-based e-learning (VB-EL) module that explains the hospital’s disaster plan in a simple language which will be easily accessible to all healthcare providers through the hospital’s website. The healthcare disaster preparedness coordinator in the targeted hospital will be responsible to ensure that VB-EL is ready by 25 April 2019. This module will be developed based on the Kirkpatrick evaluation method. In fact, VB-EL combines different data forms such as images, motion, sounds, text in a complementary fashion which will suit diverse learning styles and individual learning pace of healthcare providers. Moreover, the module can be adjusted easily than other tools to control the information that healthcare providers receive. It will enable healthcare providers to stop, rewind, fast-forward, and replay content as many times as needed. Some anticipated limitations in the development of this module include challenges of preparing VB-EL content and resistance from healthcare providers.

Keywords: Accreditation Canada International, Disaster Preparedness Standard, Kirkpatrick evaluation method, video-based e-learning

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52 Tourism and Hospitality Education Efficiency Management: The Case of the Tourism Department of Sultan Qaboos University

Authors: Tamer Mohamed Atef

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The tourism and hospitality education is a branch of the overall tourism and hospitality industry that is dedicated to providing the industry with well-educated, well-trained, skilled, enthusiastic and committed workforce. The Tourism Department at the College of Arts and Social Sciences (Sultan Qaboos University), Oman, has been providing the Omani society with undergraduate tourism and hospitality educational services since Fall 2001. Despite the fact that Tourism Department graduates are not facing any employment concerns, fluctuation in the number of enrollees and graduates, however, has been a significant characteristic since the inception of the program. To address this concern, several tactical and strategic decisions have been made, notably that the program has received accreditation from two prestigious international accreditation institutions, which mark two major milestones in the educational journey of the Tourism Department. The current study, thus, aims to provide a tourism and hospitality education efficiency management model. To achieve this aim, the following objectives were identified: to analyze students in - graduates out matrix, and to assess graduates’ employment trends. A survey was conducted to assess the current employment status of the department graduates. Secondary data were collected from Deanship of Admission and Registration statistical reports on the Tourism Department. Data were tabulated and analyzed in such a way that set forth the major findings from the survey and the secondary data. This study sheds light on the educational system created and followed by the Tourism Department, in an effort to provide a tourism and hospitality education efficiency management model, that would help educators and administrators better manage their programs.

Keywords: tourism, hospitality, education, students, graduates, employability, indicators

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51 Implementation of a Quality Management Approach in the Laboratory of Quality Control and the Repression of Fraud (CACQE) of the Wilaya of Bechar

Authors: Khadidja Mebarki, Naceur Boussouar, Nabila Ihaddadene, M. Akermi

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Food products are particularly sensitive, since they concern the health of the consumer, whether it’s be from the health point of view or commercial, this kind of product must be subjected to rigorous controls, in order to prevent any fraud. Quality and safety are essential for food security, public health and economic development. The strengthening of food security is essential to increase food security which is considered reached when all individuals can at any time access safe and nutritious food they need to lead healthy and active lives. The objective of this project is to initiate a quality approach in the laboratories of the quality control and the repression of fraud. It will be directed towards the application of good laboratory practices, traceability, management of quality documents (quality, procedures and specification manual) and quality audits. And to prepare the ground for a possible accreditation by ISO 17025 standard of BECHAR laboratory’s. The project will take place in four main stages: 1- Preparation of an audit grid; 2- Realization of a quality audit according to the method of 5 M completed by a section on quality documentation; 3- Drafting of an audit report and proposal for recommendations; 4- Implementation of corrective actions on the ground. This last step consisted in the formalization of the cleaning disinfection plan; work on good hygiene practices, establishment of a mapping of processes and flow charts of the different processes of the laboratory, classifying quality documents and formalizing the process of document management. During the period of the study within the laboratory, all facets of the work were almost appreciated, as we participated in the expertise performed in within it.

Keywords: quality, management, ISO 17025 accreditation, GLP

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50 An Analysis of the Oral Communication Strategies Used by Omani Senior American Literature Students at the Tertiary Level: A Case Study at a Public University in Muscat, Oman

Authors: Susanne Shunnaq

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During the past decade, an increasing number of higher education institutions in Oman have sought accreditation in an attempt to assure the quality of their programs. Sultan Qaboos University (SQU), the only public university in the country, has also been seeking accreditation. Hence, the university administration has been encouraging departments to evaluate their programs for development purposes. The Department of English, where 100% of the students are learners of English as a foreign language, already produced a self-study report that outlined the strength and weaknesses of the current program. The department came to the realization that due to a changing local and regional job market, transferrable communication skills are high in demand among stakeholders in the public and private sectors. Failure to equip English literature students, for example, with excellent verbal communicative skills in English may have detrimental effects for undergraduate job-seekers who have to compete for jobs in employment sectors with a predominantly English-speaking workforce. Ongoing extensive discussions about restructuring the current literature program by means of partially replacing literature courses with skills courses, hoping to produce higher quality graduates who are equipped with effective communication skills for local and regional markets, have sparked the idea for this research. The researcher, who is an American Literature specialist at SQU, has set out to investigate to what extent senior American literature students have been able to apply transferable communication skills in an advanced literature course. The study also attempts to unearth performance inhibitors and causes for communication breakdown. The primary data source for the study were audio-recordings of 6 in-class peer-group discussions in an advanced contemporary American literature course during the academic year 2016/2017. The significance of this research lies in the rarity of studies focusing on verbal communication skills in Omani higher education literature classrooms at a time when English programs are in the process of being re-visited and revamped both for accreditation purposes and for meeting job-market demands. The results showed a considerable variation in Omani students' verbal communicative abilities and English proficiency levels. The study also raises crucial questions and provides important recommendations for administrators and teachers alike who are in the process of restructuring English programs in the region and in non-English speaking countries worldwide.

Keywords: job-market, literature, Oman, tertiary education, oral communication skills

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49 Anatomy of the Challenges, Problems and Prospects of Polytechnic Administration in North-Central Nigeria

Authors: A. O. Osabo

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Polytechnic education is often described as the only sustainable academic institution that can propel massive industrial and technological growth and development in all sectors of the Nigerian economy. Because of its emphasis on science and technology, practical demonstration of skills and pivotal role in the training of low-and-high-cadre technologists and technocrats to man critical sectors of the economy, the administration of polytechnics needs to be run according to global best standards and practices in order to achieve their goals and objectives. Besides, the polytechnics need to be headed by seasoned and academically sound professionals to pursue the goals and objectives of the schools as centres of technology, learning and academic excellence. Over the years, however, polytechnics in Nigeria have suffered a wide myriad of administrative problems and challenges which have prevented them from achieving their basic goals and objectives. Apart from regulatory problems and challenges, some heads of polytechnics do not demonstrate leadership and management skills in bringing the desired innovations in the management of the polytechnics under them. These have resulted, in most cases, to the polytechnics not performing optimally in its mandate. This paper examines the administrative problems, challenges and prospects of polytechnics education in north-central Nigeria. Using a total of 97 questionnaires consisting of semi-structured interviews of yes-or-no questions shared among staff and students of the selected polytechnics and a descriptive statistical method of analysis, the study found that the inability of the polytechnics to meet their goals and objectives is caused by administrative and organizational problems and challenges, bordering on funding, accreditation, manpower, corruption and maladministration, among others. The paper thus suggests that the leadership of the polytechnics must rise up to the demands of the time in order to deal with the administrative problems and challenges affecting them and fulfill the goals and objectives for which the schools were established.

Keywords: education, administration, polytechnic, accreditation, Nigerian

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48 Decision-Making in Higher Education: Case Studies Demonstrating the Value of Institutional Effectiveness Tools

Authors: Carolinda Douglass

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Institutional Effectiveness (IE) is the purposeful integration of functions that foster student success and support institutional performance. IE is growing rapidly within higher education as it is increasingly viewed by higher education administrators as a beneficial approach for promoting data-informed decision-making in campus-wide strategic planning and execution of strategic initiatives. Specific IE tools, including, but not limited to, project management; impactful collaboration and communication; commitment to continuous quality improvement; and accountability through rigorous evaluation; are gaining momentum under the auspices of IE. This research utilizes a case study approach to examine the use of these IE tools, highlight successes of this use, and identify areas for improvement in the implementation of IE tools within higher education. The research includes three case studies: (1) improving upon academic program review processes including the assessment of student learning outcomes as a core component of program quality; (2) revising an institutional vision, mission, and core values; and (3) successfully navigating an institution-wide re-accreditation process. Several methods of data collection are embedded within the case studies, including surveys, focus groups, interviews, and document analyses. Subjects of these methods include higher education administrators, faculty, and staff. Key findings from the research include areas of success and areas for improvement in the use of IE tools associated with specific case studies as well as aggregated results across case studies. For example, the use of case management proved useful in all of the case studies, while rigorous evaluation did not uniformly provide the value-added that was expected by higher education decision-makers. The use of multiple IE tools was shown to be consistently useful in decision-making when applied with appropriate awareness of and sensitivity to core institutional culture (for example, institutional mission, local environments and communities, disciplinary distinctions, and labor relations). As IE gains a stronger foothold in higher education, leaders in higher education can make judicious use of IE tools to promote better decision-making and secure improved outcomes of strategic planning and the execution of strategic initiatives.

Keywords: accreditation, data-informed decision-making, higher education management, institutional effectiveness tools, institutional mission, program review, strategic planning

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47 Educational Innovation and ICT: Before and during 21st Century

Authors: Carlos Monge López, Patricia Gómez Hernández

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Educational innovation is a quality factor of teaching-learning processes and institutional accreditation. There is an increasing of these change processes, especially after 2000. However, the publications about this topic are more associated with ICTs in currently century. The main aim of the study was to determine the tendency of educational innovations around ICTs. The used method was mixed research design (content analysis, review of scientific literature and descriptive, comparative and correlation study) with 649 papers. In summary, the results indicated that, progressively, the educational innovation is associated with ICTs, in comparison with this type of change processes without ICTs. In conclusion, although this tendency, scientific literature must divulgate more kinds of pedagogical innovation with the aim of deepening in other new resources.

Keywords: descriptive study, knowledge society, pedagogical innovation, technologies

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46 Exploring the Potential of Mobile Learning in Distance Higher Education: A Case Study of the University of Jammu, Jammu, and Kashmir

Authors: Darshana Sharma

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Distance Education has emerged as a viable alternative to serve the higher educational needs of the socially and economically disadvantaged people of the remote, rural areas of Jammu region. The University of Jammu is a National Accreditation, and Assessment Council accredited, A+ university and has been accorded graded autonomy by the University Grants Commission. It is a dual mode university offering academic programmes through the regular departments and through the Directorate of Distance Education. The Directorate of Distance Education, University of Jammu still uses printed study material as a mode of instructional delivery. The development of technologies has assured increased interaction and communication for distance learners throughout the distance open learning institutions. Though it is tempting and convenient to adopt technology already being used by others, it may not prove effective for the simple reason that two institutions may be unlike in some respect. The use of technology must be conceived in view of the needs of the learners; geographical socio-economic-cultural and technological contexts and financial, administrative and academic resources of the institution. Mobile learning (m-learning) is a novel approach to knowledge acquisition and dissemination and is gaining global attention. It has evolved as one of the useful channels of distance learning promoting interaction between learners and teachers. It is felt that the Directorate of Distance Education, University of Jammu also needs to adopt new technologies to provide more effective academic and information support to distance learners in order to keep them motivated and also to develop self-learning skills. The chief objective of the research on which this paper is based was to measure the opinion of the distance learners of the DDE, the University of Jammu about the merits of mobile learning. It also explores their preferences for implementing mobile learning. The survey research design of descriptive research has been used. The data was collected from 400 distance learners enrolled with undergraduate and post-graduate programmes using self-constructed questionnaire containing five-point Likert scale items arranging from strongly agree, agree, indifferent, disagree and strongly disagree. Percentages were used to analyze the data. The findings lead to conclude that mobile learning has a great potential for the DDE for reaching out to the rural, remotely located distance learners of the Jammu region and also to improve the teaching-learning environment. The paper also finds out the challenges in the implementation of mobile learning in the region and further makes suggestions for effective implementation of mobile learning in DDE, University of Jammu.

Keywords: directorate of distance education, mobile learning, national accreditation and assessment council, university of Jammu

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