|dc.contributor.author||Luckett, Kathleen Margaret||en_ZA
|dc.contributor.other||University of Stellenbosch. Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Dept. of Sociology and Social Anthropology.||
|dc.description.abstract||The context of this study is the introduction of a new national quality assurance
system for South African higher education by an agency of the Department of
Education. The purpose of the study is to conduct a critical policy analysis of the
Council of Higher Education’s Higher Education Quality Committee’s policy
formulation process. In doing so, the study seeks to understand how the quality of
teaching and learning practice might be enhanced through quality assurance.
In order to answer this question the study examines the literature on quality assurance
in higher education and proposes a simple conceptual framework for mapping
different approaches to quality assurance. The framework is based on a normative
judgment that communicative action is more likely to result in the improvement of
teaching and learning practice than instrumental action.
Approaches to policy analysis and evaluation research are explored and it is argued
that policymaking is a complex multi-faceted process requiring a pluralist research
design. This is attempted in the study where a range of research methods are
employed from within a critical social science paradigm.
The study analyses data gathered at each of the policy stages: setting the policy
agenda, policy formulation, policy adoption and policy reformulation, but stops short
of researching policy implementation in any depth. The study is therefore classified as
a formative, clarificatory evaluation. It seeks to evaluate the conceptualization and
design of instruments for quality assurance, stakeholder contribution to policy
development and stakeholder response to policy proposals. In particular the study
seeks to uncover the different values, discourses and ideologies that stakeholders
subscribe to in the policymaking process. The findings of the study show that the HEQC did attempt to work communicatively
and consultatively with the higher education community and that it was, in part, due
to its consultative efforts, that the final policy instruments were greatly improved. But
the study also shows that the consultative process was only partially successful, with
serious differences still existing between the HEQC and some stakeholder groups.
Different stakeholder approaches to quality assurance are traced to deeper historical,
cultural and ideological differences. The study suggests that these factors are likely to
hinder the smooth implementation of the HEQC’s policies.
The findings of the study also suggest that the challenge of designing a model of
quality assurance that caters adequately for both the improvement and accountability
purposes of quality assurance was not entirely met in this policymaking process.
Furthermore, the study suggests that because the HEQC’s policies were, from the
outset, conceived of as a means of furthering the state’s transformation agenda, its
idea of quality and its quality assurance procedures are beginning to work
ideologically. This has the effect of politicizing the implementation process and
undermining the HEQC’s efforts to improve the quality of teaching and learning
practice in South African higher education.||en_ZA
|dc.publisher||Stellenbosch : University of Stellenbosch||
|dc.subject||Dissertations -- Sociology||en_ZA
|dc.subject||Theses -- Sociology||en_ZA
|dc.subject||Higher education and state -- South Africa||en_ZA
|dc.subject||Universities and colleges -- South Africa -- Evaluation||en_ZA
|dc.title||The quality assurance of teaching and learning in higher education in South Africa : an analysis of national policy development and stakeholder response||en_ZA
|dc.rights.holder||University of Stellenbosch||