ERIC Number: ED206253
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Sep
Quality Control in Off-Campus Degree Programs. AAHE-ERIC/Higher Education Research Currents, September 1981.
Honan, James P.
The quality of off-campus degree programs is considered in relation to quality control models and efforts that have been used to achieve quality control, the parties responsible for quality control, the effectiveness of programs to improve the educational quality of nontraditional education, and future prospects. It is suggested that quality control efforts must reflect newly created dimensions and variables that these off-campus programs introduce so that their level of performance can be assessed accurately, and the academic quality of these programs can be addressed at the same time. It is claimed that outcomes evaluation is underdeveloped at present but that innovative efforts in this area may help improve the reputation of off-campus degree programs and further develop more nontraditional delivery systems in higher education. A shift in focus from a predominantly "process" approach in quality control efforts to a mixture of process and outcomes approaches appears to be a likely consequence of an expanded number of nontraditional programs. A key element in improving the quality of off-campus degree programs is the continued development of internal quality controls by individual colleges and universities (e.g., an extensive approval process for off-campus programs and courses; stringent standards for faculty hiring; and student evaluation of off-campus courses, faculty, and support services). It is suggested that external controls exercised by accrediting bodies and state education agencies have made a positive contribution to program quality, but colleges and universities must assume primary responsibility for maintaining quality in off-campus programs. The sequential evaluation model of the North Central Association's Commission on Institutions of Higher Education is described. A bibliography is included. (SW)
Descriptors: Academic Standards, Accountability, Accreditation (Institutions), Course Evaluation, Delivery Systems, Educational Benefits, Educational Quality, Evaluation Criteria, Extension Education, External Degree Programs, Higher Education, Institutional Evaluation, Models, Nontraditional Education, Outcomes of Education, Program Effectiveness, Program Evaluation, Quality Control, Self Evaluation (Groups), Teacher Qualifications
American Association for Higher Education, One Dupont Circle, Suite 780, Washington, DC 20036 ($.75).
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Higher Education, Washington, DC.; National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.; American Association for Higher Education, Washington, DC.