ERIC Number: ED202277
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1980-Jul
Reference Count: N/A
Quality, Quangos, and the States.
Nyquist, Ewald B.
The ways that historical factors, public policies, and changes in higher education have influenced quality evaluation, accreditation, and ethical practices in higher education are considered. It is suggested that during the last two decades relationships between government and voluntary accrediting agencies have become alienated. Regulatory and coordinating functions have increased greatly as states have assumed coordinating, planning, accrediting, certifying, and licensing roles. The federal government also established accrediting agencies to determine institutional eligibility for federal funds. Voluntary accrediting agencies tried to coordinate efforts, both regional and professional, through a loose federation of the regional accrediting agencies. A major question is whether states should go beyond state licensure roles in seeking to improve the standing and quality of an institution or whether this function should be left to regional voluntary accrediting agencies. The need and the demand of society for consumer protection and accountability in higher education are considered. Among the abuses that need to be addressed are the following: questionable admissions and grading policies, failure to provide promised services or to offer courses listed, and questionable refund policies. Among the strengths of voluntary agencies are the following: they emphasize self-study, they help protect institutions against political encroachments by outside organizations, and they assist in promoting the diversity and pluralism of higher education. Among the criticisms of voluntary agencies are the following: standards for institutional accreditation appear to have dropped; regional agencies do not make their reports public; and they have not done much about off-campus extension centers, programs abroad, branches of parent schools, and education at military bases. (SW)
Descriptors: Accountability, Accreditation (Institutions), Accrediting Agencies, Consumer Protection, Coordination, Educational Assessment, Educational Change, Educational Quality, Government Role, Government School Relationship, Higher Education, Institutional Evaluation, Public Policy, Regional Cooperation, State Government
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Kellogg Foundation, Battle Creek, MI.
Authoring Institution: State Higher Education Executive Officers Association.; Education Commission of the States, Denver, CO. Inservice Education Program.