Lesson learned from institutional self-evaluation: Infusing pockets of excellence from the reviews experiences
Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences
Vaal University Technology, Vanderbijlpark, South Africa
This paper argue from the premise that while higher education institutions are engaging in self-evalaution process, there are possibilites of developing patterns of excellence. In return this patterns of excellence will then be developed into best practices that can inform our quality assurance process in higher education institution. This paper intends to establish the learning experiences that can be learners from the self-evaluation particular with regard to teaching and learning. The research was conducted using data from the two academic departments, two reviewers panel reports and finally the quality assurance manager plan. As the study was based on interpretive study, data was collected using documental analysis of the self-evaluation reports and reviewers reports from the two department. Surely, if there is a clear system in place it will be easy for HOD's to monitor QA at programme level, furthermore to monitor the improvement based on the initial monitoring process. However, HOD's argue that the only monitoring that was in place in the institution relate to the external moderation of the assessment process. This was the only quality monitoring process that was certified and confirmed unanimously by all respondents. They did confirm that it is the policy of the university to appoint external examiners for all the subjects at the exit level. The findings reveal that although the general idea of internal quality guidelines is to improve institutional self-evaluation, its operational process was hampered by accelerated societal changes in the HE, academic heads were further compelled to take into consideration those self evaluation guidelines which are aimed at achieving the relationships between strategy, the environment, the reaction of management, the quality system and institutional improvements on the holistic view of quality mechanisms. Furthermore, it was etsablished that central idea is to eventually legitimise institutional self-evaluation programmes which will be externally validated by outside quality agencies. HoD's further reveal that, accreditation is still the most important phase, because it legitimises internally and externally defined.