Enter your email to reset your password Or sign up using: Sign in if you're already registered. Staff Getty Every business owner likes to think that he or she has a commitment to quality.
Yet federal efforts over the last several years have focused much more on increasing the number of Americans who go to college than on improving the education they receive once they get there. By concentrating so heavily on graduation rates and attainment levels, policy makers are ignoring danger signs that the amount that students learn in college may have declined over the past few decades and could well continue to do so in the years to come.
The reasons for concern include: College students today seem to be spending much less time on their course work than their predecessors did 50 years ago, and evidence of their abilities suggests that they are probably learning less than students once did and quite possibly less than their counterparts in many other advanced industrial countries.
Employers complain that many graduates they hire are deficient in basic skills such as writing, problem solving and critical thinking that college leaders and their faculties consistently rank among the most important goals of an undergraduate education.
Most of the millions of additional students needed to increase educational attainment levels will come to campus poorly prepared for college work, creating a danger that higher graduation rates will be achievable only by lowering academic standards.
More than two-thirds of college instructors today are not on the tenure track but are lecturers serving on year-to-year contracts. Many of them are hired without undergoing the vetting commonly used in appointing tenure-track professors. Studies indicate that extensive use of such instructors may contribute to higher dropout rates and to grade inflation.
States have made substantial cuts in support per student over the past 30 years for public colleges and community colleges. Research suggests that failing to increase appropriations to keep pace with enrollment growth tends to reduce learning and even lower graduation rates. While some college leaders are making serious efforts to improve the quality of teaching, many others seem content with their existing programs.
Although they recognize the existence of problems affecting higher education as a whole, such as grade inflation or a decline in the rigor of academic standards, few seem to believe that these difficulties exist on their own campus, or they tend to attribute most of the difficulty to the poor preparation of students before they enroll.
Some Immediate Improvements Many colleges provide a formidable array of courses, majors and extracurricular opportunities, but firsthand accounts indicate that many undergraduates do not feel that the material conveyed in their readings and lectures has much relevance to their lives.
Such sentiments suggest either that the courses do not in fact contribute much to the ultimate goals that colleges claim to value or that instructors are not taking sufficient care to explain the larger aims of their courses and why they should matter.
Other studies suggest that many instructors do not teach their courses in ways best calculated to achieve the ends that faculties themselves consider important.
For example, one investigator studied samples of the examinations given at elite liberal arts colleges and research universities. Now that most faculties have defined the learning objectives of their college and its various departments and programs, it should be possible to review recent examinations to determine whether individual professors, programs and departments are actually designing their courses to achieve those goals.
College administrators could also modify their student evaluation forms to ask students whether they believe the stated goals were emphasized in the courses they took. In addition, the average time students devote to studying varies widely among different colleges, and many campuses could require more of their students.
Those lacking evidence about the study habits of their undergraduates could inform themselves through confidential surveys that faculties could review and consider steps to encourage greater student effort and improve learning.
The vast difference between how well seniors think they can perform and their actual proficiencies according to tests of basic skills and employer evaluations suggests that many colleges are failing to give students an adequate account of their progress. Grade inflation may also contribute to excessive confidence, suggesting a need to work to restore appropriate standards, although that alone is unlikely to solve the problem.
More Substantial Reforms More fundamental changes will take longer to achieve but could eventually yield even greater gains in the quality of undergraduate education. Colleges and universities need to reconfigure graduate programs to better prepare aspiring professors for teaching.Quality education seems to be education that policy makers employed by the public and private educational enterprises believe will influence learners in .
Improving the Quality of Education. All these reforms could do a lot to improve the quality of undergraduate education -- as well as increase levels of attainment. With more research and experimentation, other useful ideas will doubtless continue to appear.
Bio. Improve the quality of education for all students benefits that stabilize the workforce and improve the quality of services Such an investment will not only serve to recruit and retain the best providers but will also provide children with quality services.
HOW TO IMPROVE TEACHING QUALITY. Richard M. Felder Department of Chemical Engineering North Carolina State University Rebecca Brent The conflict can easily turn what should be a united effort to improve the quality of education into a power struggle between faculty members and administrators.
The consequence is that the introduction of TQM. Rethinking what we consider to be effective teaching—and how we facilitate it—is an integral part of ensuring students receive a quality education To improve quality in education, reconsider true definition of 'good teacher' | Global Partnership for Education.
5 Ways to Improve Quality Whether you sell a product or a service, these five steps will help you ensure that you are constantly improving the way you do business--to the delight of your customers.