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ERIC Number: ED562063
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Jan
Pages: 36
Abstractor: ERIC
The DNA of a Converging Diversity: Regional Approaches to Quality Assurance in Higher Education
Wells, Peter J.
Council for Higher Education Accreditation
The modernization agendas of higher education systems and institutions around the world are littered with debate over definitions of what is a "quality higher education" often paralyzed by the parallax of multiple stakeholder perspectives. Over the last decade or so there has been a hitherto unprecedented appetite for attempting to clearly define the DNA of quality in higher education. In the process, certain red-herrings have emerged, such as the so called "World-Class Universities" and "University Rankings", but more pragmatic and practical initiatives have also evolved to speak to criteria that are generally held to be important when qualifying an effective higher education system, not merely for the purposes of national trumpet-blowing but in recognition of the immeasurable contribution to economic, political, and cultural development that a strong national higher education system plays. In 2013, are these criteria really so different from nation to nation and from region to region? Is there a convergence towards common principles of evaluating higher education occurring or not? This document examines the evolutions of quality assurance in higher education in four regions of the world (Africa, the Arab Sates, the Asia-Pacific and Europe) and attempts to determine whether or not the diversity of agencies, networks of agencies, their respective guidelines, handbooks and good practices criteria all belong to a common 21st century higher education quality assurance genome. Three annexes are provided: (1) Internal Quality Assurance Criteria; (2) External Quality Assurance Criteria; and (3) Quality Assurance Agency Criteria. A list of references and internet sources is included.
Council for Higher Education Accreditation. One Dupont Circle Suite 510, Washington, DC 20016. Tel: 202-955-6126; Fax: 202-955-6129; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Council for Higher Education Accreditation
Identifiers - Location: Africa