Show simple item record

dc.contributor.advisorvan der Westhuizen, L. J.
dc.contributor.advisorBezuidenhout, M. J.
dc.contributor.authorKadhila, Ngepathimo
dc.date.accessioned2015-08-19T14:27:49Z
dc.date.available2015-08-19T14:27:49Z
dc.date.issued2012-01
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/11660/979
dc.description.abstractEnglish: Throughout the world, quality assurance (QA) has become an increasingly dominant theme in higher education (HE) in recent years, with international processes playing an important role in the way in which quality assurance is interpreted and implemented (European Commission Tempus, 2009:7). The importance of quality assurance mechanisms in Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) is reflected in the literature review which suggests that clearly defined and effective quality assurance policies are necessary in order to raise the standards in HEIs. The main drivers of change in higher education and the incentives for introducing more structured approaches to quality assurance have been identified as the growth in student numbers (massification), the recognition that higher education and skills levels are vital elements in the economic, political and social development of countries, stakeholder demands for accountability, and the perception that higher education has become both an international and a competitive market area. These are some of the many factors that have contributed to the understanding of the need for greater transparency and consistency in quality assurance in HEIs (Becket & Brookes, 2005:1; Fresen, 2005:18). Globally, the majority of HEIs in most countries have now implemented more structured and systematic approaches to quality assurance in response to the new demands for quality higher education in order to ensure high academic standards, integrity and accountability. The Commonwealth of Learning (COL) suggests that, while there is a clear need for the development and implementation of quality assurance strategies in HEIs throughout the world, there is, nevertheless, a lack of uniformity and agreement in respect of the form that such strategies should take (COL, 2009:3). This also applies to the HEIs in Namibia. This study was conducted in order to investigate the phenomenon of quality assurance with special reference to the internal quality assurance mechanisms implemented by HEIs in Namibia and, based on the findings of the study, to make recommendations aimed at the improvement of the practice of quality assurance in higher education in Namibia. The recommendations are contained in a proposed framework for best practice in quality assurance in HEIs in Namibia – see Annexure to this thesis. As background to the study an extensive literature review was conducted to investigate the phenomenon of quality assurance. This literature review revealed that, apart from unpublished official documents, there is little information available on empirical literature on quality assurance in higher education in Namibia. Accordingly, the researcher identified the need to investigate the field of quality assurance in higher education in Namibia in an attempt to close the existing knowledge gap. The research design was tailored to the purposes of this study and comprised a qualitative research approach. A phenomenological explorative and descriptive design was used with the aim of seeking an understanding and interpretation of the true meaning that the participants accorded to their experience of the phenomenon under study, namely, quality assurance in HEIs. In other words, this design provided the researcher with an opportunity to understand the phenomena as they unfolded in their natural setting during the enquiry. The methodology was based on improvement-oriented evaluation. The study confined itself to degree-granting HEIs only, with a university status. Three institutions participated in the study − one public university, one private university, and one polytechnic. The data were collected by means of individual interviews (purposeful sampling) and institutional document analyses. Focus group interviews were conducted for the purposes of triangulation. This threefold approach was adopted so as to allow the triangulation that would ensure effective data collection and information validation. The key research questions in terms of which the study aimed to find answers may be summarised as follows: What are the internal quality assurance mechanisms in place in HEIs in Namibia? What may be said about the implementation stage of these mechanisms, and are there areas of possible improvement? The study revealed, inter alia, that the overall picture is that the new paradigm for quality assurance systems in higher education in Namibia, in its current format and at both national and institutional level, is an extremely recent phenomenon as it is in the initial stage of development. The NCHE‟s national quality assurance system in Namibian higher education was only introduced in 2009. Certain institutions had taken the initiative to introduce formalised quality assurance systems before 2009. However, mechanisms and procedures for self-evaluation have not been part of the quality assurance practices of HEIs. No attention has ever been given to benchmarking as one of the mechanisms of quality assurance which identifies best practices from which to learn in the interests of improvement. Many quality assurance mechanisms are informal and it is essential that attention be given to more structured mechanisms. Overall, there is a growing awareness of internal quality assurance in the Namibian HEIs. There is, however, very little agreement on notions of quality and quality assurance in these HEIs in Namibia. The understanding of the concept of quality assurance and the involvement of key stakeholders, such as students and employers, tend to be limited and, in the case of employers, actually relatively rare. Quality culture in HEIs in Namibia is generally extremely low. In certain institutions there appears to be a gap between the formal legal requirements and the actual implementation of quality assurance. There seems to be a lack of publicly available, transparent information about the quality assurance processes and their outcomes in the HEIs in Namibia. Where they do, in fact, exist, quality assurance units and offices in HEIs tend to be inadequately resourced. Although there are some notable exceptions, central information systems, which are key to effective decision-making, are still lacking in most HEIs. A framework for best practice in quality assurance in HEIs in Namibia, aimed at the improvement of the practice of quality assurance in higher education in Namibia, was deemed necessary and, thus, such a framework was developed and suggested. See Annexure A attached to Chapter 6. The value of this study is to be found in its endeavour to address the lack of research on quality assurance in higher education in Namibia. It is hoped that the study will make a meaningful contribution to the establishment and improvement of quality assurance in a relatively „young‟ higher education system in Africa. The significance of the study lies in its enhancing the awareness of the current development of quality assurance in higher education practices and in its promoting the need to introduce formalised internal quality assurance systems and processes in order to improve the quality levels in HEIs in Namibia. Through this study much needed information on institutional quality assurance will be available to HEIs in Namibia, and also to government, higher education policy makers, and development partners. In addition, the study addressed the issue of accountability and continuous improvement as regards protecting the students from poor quality higher education.en_ZA
dc.description.abstractAfrikaans: Gedurende die afgelope aantal jare het gehalteversekering (GV) wêreldwyd „n dominante onderwerp in hoër onderwys (HO) geword. Dit omsluit onder andere internasionale prosesse wat 'n belangrike rol speel in die wyse hoe gehalteversekering geïnterpreteer en geïmplementeer word (European Commission Tempus, 2009:7). Die belangrikheid van gehalteversekeringsmeganismes vir hoëronderwys instellings (HOIs) word in die literatuur gereflekteer en suggereer en meld dat duidelike gedefinieerde en effektiewe gehalteversekeringbeleide noodsaaklik is om die standaarde van HOIs te verhoog. Die belangrikste dryfveer vir verandering in hoëronderwys en die bekendstelling van 'n meer gestruktureerde benadering tot gehalteversekering kan geïdentifiseer word as die groei in studentegetalle (massifikasie); erkenning dat hoëronderwys en vaardigheidsvlakke noodsaaklike elemente is vir die ekonomiese, politieke en sosiale ontwikkeling van lande; rolspelers se aandrang op rekenskap; en die persepsie dat hoëronderwys in beide die internasionale en kompeterende mark meeding. Hierdie is slegs sommige van die baie faktore wat meewerk tot die verstaan van die behoeftes vir groter deursigtigheid en koersvastheid van die HOIs se gehalteversekering (Becket & Brooks, 2005:1; Fresen, 2005:18). Wêreldwyd het hoëronderwysinstellings in verskeie lande meer gestruktureerde en sistematiese benaderings tot gehalteversekering geïmplementeer, in reaksie tot die nuwe vereistes vir gehalte hoër onderwys en vir die versekering van hoër akademiese standaarde, integriteit en verantwoordelikheid. Die Commonwealth of Learning (COL) suggereer dat daar wêreldwyd „n behoefte bestaan vir die ontwikkeling en implementering van gehalteversekeringstrategië in HOIs. Daar is egter nie eensgesindheid rakende die formaat van hierdie strategië nie (COL, 2009:3). Hierdie stelling is ook van toepassing op die HOIs in Namibië. Hierdie studie is onderneem om die gehalteversekeringsfenomeen te ondersoek, met spesiale verwysing na die interne gehalteversekeringsmeganismes wat in HOIs in Namibië geïmplementeer is. Gebaseer op die bevindings van hierdie studie word aanbevelings gemaak wat gemik is op die verbetering van gehalteversekeringspraktyke in hoër onderwys in Namibië. Hierdie aanbevelings is opgeneem in „n voorgestelde raamwerk vir beste praktyk in gehalteversekering van HOIs in Namibië – sien Bylaag tot hierdie tesis. 'n Uitgebreide literatuurstudie is as agtergrond tot die studie gedoen om die gehalteversekeringsfenomeen te ondersoek. Die literatuurstudie het getoon dat, afgesien van die ongepubliseerde amptelike dokumentasie, daar weinig inligting en empiriese literatuur beskikbaar is rakende die gehalteversekering van hoër onderwys in Namibië. Gevolglik het die navorser die behoefte geïdentifiseer om die die terrein van gehalteversekering in hoër onderwys in Namibië te ondersoek as poging om die bepaalde kennisgaping te oorbrug. Die navorsingsontwerp is ontwikkel met die doelstellings van die studie voor oë en bestaan uit „n kwantitatiewe ondersoekbenadering. „n Fenomenologiese beskrywende ontwerp is gebruik met die doel om begrip en duidelikheid te verkry rakende die ware betekenis en ervaring van die fenomeen wat bestudeer word, naamlik die gehalteversekering in HOIs, soos ervaar deur die betrokke deelnemers. Anders gestel, hierdie ontwerp het die navorser die geleentheid gebied om die fenomeen te verstaan soos dit ontvou het gedurende die studie, gesetel in „n natuurlike situasie. Die metodologie is gebaseer op „n verbeteringsgeoriënteerde evaluering. Die studie is beperk tot hoëronderwysinstansies in Namibië wat graadstudies aanbied. Drie sodanige instansies was deel van hierdie studie, naamlik een openbare universiteit, een privaat universiteit en 'n polytechnikon. Die data is ingesamel deur middel van ‘n analise van institusionele dokumentasie. Die fokusgroeponderhoude is onderneem vir triangulasie. Hierdie metode van drievoudige triangulasie-evaluering het effektiewe dataversameling en inligtingsgeldigheid verseker. Die kernondersoekvraag waarop die studie gemik was is om antwoorde te verkry op die kernvraag wat as volg opgesom word: Watter interne gehalteversekeringsmeganismes bestaan tans aan Namibiese hoëronderwysinstellings? Op watter stadium van implementering is hierdie meganismes, en bestaan daar terreine vir moontlike verbetering? Die studie het onder andere aan die lig gebring dat die oorkoepelende nuwe paradigma vir gehalteversekeringsisteme in Namibiese hoër onderwys in die huidige formaat, en beide op nasionale en institusionele vlak, „n relatief resente fenomeen is wat in „n beginstadium van ontwikkeling is. Geen nasionale gehalteversekeringsisteem het vóór 2009 in Namibiese hoër onderwys bestaan nie. Sommige instansies het wel voor 2009 inisiatief geneem om enkele formele gehalteversekeringsisteme te vestig. Meganismes en prosedures vir self-evalering was egter nie deel van die gehalteversekeringspraktyke van die HOIs nie. Geen aandag is gegee aan yking as een van die gehalteversekeringsmeganismes om beste praktyke as „n vorm van leer met die oog op verbetering te identifiseer nie. Baie gehalteversekeringsmeganismes is informeel en dit is noodsaaklik dat meer aandag aan die vestiging van meer gestruktureerde meganismes gegee moet word. In die geheel gesien is daar toenemende bewustheid van interne gehalteversekeringsbewustheid in die Namibiese HOIs. Daar bestaan egter weinig eenstemmigheid oor die betekenis van die begrippe gehalte en gehalteversekering aan Namibiese HOIs. Begrip van die konsep van gehalteversekering en die betrokkenheid van sleutelrolspelers, soos studente en werkgewers, neig om beperk te wees, en in die geval van werkgewers bestaan dit bykans nie. Daar is bykans geen sprake van „n kultuur van gehalteversekering in Namibiese hoër onderwys nie. Daar is ook „n gaping tussen die formele wettiese vereistes en die implementering van gehalteversekering en 'n tekort aan amptelike en deursigtige inligting rakende gehalteversekeringsprosesse en gepaardgaande uitkomste in die HOIs van Namibië. Waar gehalteversekeringseenhede en -kantore wel by HOIs bestaan is daar gewoonlik „n gebrek aan die nodige ondersteuningsmiddele. Alhoewel daar enkele uitsonderings is, is daar aan die meeste van die HOIs „n gebrek aan „n sentrale inligtingsisteem wat noodsaaklik is vir effektiewe besluitneming. „n Raamwerk vir beste praktyke in gehalteversekering vir hoër onderwys in Namibië blyk dus noodsaaklik te wees. Sodanige raamwerk is ontwikkel en word voorgestel (sien Bylae A in Hoofstuk 6). Die waarde van hierdie studie is daarin geleë dat dit „n poging is om die tekort aan navorsing oor gehalteversekering in hoër onderwys in Namibië aan te vul. Die navorser vertrou dat die studie „n bruikbare bydrae sal lewer tot die daarstelling en verbetering van die gehalteversekeringsmeganismes van 'n relatief jong hoëronderwyssisteem in Afrika. Die belangrikheid van die studie is om 'n bewustheid te kweek rakende bestaande gehalteversekeringspraktyke en die uitbouing van die behoefte om geformaliseerde interne gehalteversekeringsisteme en – prosesse van die HOIs te verbeter. Hierdie verslag sal inligting oor gehalteversekering wat dringend benodig word, beskikbaar stel aan HOIs in Namibië, en ook aan die regering, hoëronderwysbeleidmakers en ontwikkelingsvennote. Hierbenewens het die studie die kwessie van verantwoordingdoening en voortgesette verbetering onder die loep geneem ten einde studente teen hoër onderwys van swak gehalte te beskerm.
dc.language.isoenen_ZA
dc.publisherUniversity of the Free Stateen_ZA
dc.subjectThesis (Ph.D. (Higher Education Studies))--University of the Free State, 2012en_ZA
dc.subjectQuality assurance -- Education, Higher -- Namibiaen_ZA
dc.subjectEducation, Higher -- Quality assurance -- Namibiaen_ZA
dc.subjectEducation, Higher -- Quality control -- Namibiaen_ZA
dc.subjectBest practice quality assurance frameworken_ZA
dc.subjectInternal quality assurance mechanismsen_ZA
dc.subjectHigher Education Institutionsen_ZA
dc.subjectSystematic quality assuranceen_ZA
dc.titleQuality assurance mechanisms in higher education institutions in Namibiaen_ZA
dc.typeThesisen_ZA
dc.rights.holderUniversity of the Free Stateen_ZA


Files in this item

Thumbnail

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record