Governing Quality: Positioning Student Learning as a Core Objective of Institutional and System-Level Governance

In: International Journal of Chinese Education
Glen A. Jones Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto

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How do we govern quality in higher education? “Governance” and “quality” are wicked problems in higher education policy, and there is frequently a disconnect between the formal governance structures and decision-making processes of the university, and the discussion of quality in terms of student learning. Drawing on recent studies of university governance in Canada (and elsewhere), the author argues that institutional governance arrangements often avoid issues of quality in teaching and learning. The author argues that student learning must be positioned as a core objective within institutional and system-level governance arrangements, and that it is only through in-depth institutional and system-level engagement in the discussion of educational quality that sustained and broadly-based quality improvement can take place. Enhancing quality must be a key objective of governance reform.

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