ERIC Number: ED200108
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980
Reference Count: 0
Program Review's Missing Member: A Consideration of Quality and Its Assessment.
Scott, Robert A.
Perspectives on academic program quality are considered, and it is suggested that quality represents the level of attainment of appropriate goals, or effectiveness in achieving objectives. When considering the quality of academic programs, one must consider purposes, or goals; the congruence between program goals and institutional goals, which inevitably must be congruent with societal or patron values and goals; the use of resources; the context in which the activities of the program take place; and the degree to which the program attains its goals or peak performance. The values that are most important in academe are those that contribute to the common good, and they include objectivity, integrity, attainment by merit, intellectual courage, and liberty. These values can lead to a stable order in which such goals as freedom in teaching, learning, and service can be fulfilled. Program characteristics judged important to quality and some acceptable sources of information about them are identified under the broad categories of faculty, students, resources, and operations. Three major forms of external program review presently exist: regional accreditation, professional society accreditation, and state agency evaluation. The differences among these approaches in terms of perspective, performance criteria, and level of organizational analysis are briefly sketched. It is suggested that while different perspectives are held by faculty members, deans, state officials, and others, they can have a common understanding of the nature of quality and the criteria for evaluation. (SW)
Descriptors: Accreditation (Institutions), College Role, Cost Effectiveness, Educational Objectives, Educational Quality, Evaluation Criteria, Faculty Evaluation, Government School Relationship, Higher Education, Institutional Evaluation, Program Effectiveness, Program Evaluation, Student Evaluation
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
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