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Conference on quality assurance for public and private universities in Ghana opens

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legon1A day’s conference on quality assurance for public and private Universities in Ghana opened in Accra on Monday, to develop a national framework to guide Quality Assurance Units of tertiary institutions.

The conference, which was organized by the University of Professional Studies (UPSA), Accra, also witnessed the launch of National Working Groups (NWGs) for Quality Enhancement in Higher education Institutions (HEIs) in the country, by the Council for the development of social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA).

Directors and Heads of Quality Assurance Directorates in some selected public and private Universities in the country are participating and would be presenting papers on the theme, “The Evolution, Current Developments and Challenges to Quality Assurance Practices in Universities”.

Professor Joshua Alabi, Vice-Chancellor, UPSA, in an address, said the Working Group has been charged with the task of documenting the evolution of quality assurance practices in the Higher Educational Sector  and also to analyze how the current national accreditation structure have impacted on quality of HEIs in Ghana.

He explained that recent developments in global reforms of higher education have ignited the importance of Quality Assurance Mechanisms as a tool to enhance value, governance, increase transparency and create trust among stakeholders and institutions of higher learning.

He said due to the realization and a directive from the National Accreditation Board (NAB), most tertiary institutions have now established Quality Assurance Units and developed their own guidelines for operation, however these are not harmonized as each institution operates differently to achieve their own specific objectives.

Prof Alabi said for uniformity and a common sense of purpose, there was the need for the development of a harmonized national document that would set clear guidelines for the operations of such units to ensure quality products from the various institutions of higher learning in Ghana.

Prof Goski Alabi, Dean of Graduate Studies, UPSA, outlining the project objectives for the NWG, said it would be required to develop a National Quality Assurance Framework for Higher Education, document the evolution of the quality assurance practices in such institutions and identify factors that promote or constrain quality assurance practices in tertiary institutions in Ghana.

Again the Group is expected to ascertain how current national accreditation structures and initiatives have impacted on quality, accountability and transparency of tertiary institutions, ascertain internal structures and systems used in Ghana.

She said the Group would further ascertain how academic governance, the election, selection or appointment of Deans and Heads of Departments and how the duration of their terms affect the delivery of quality at both the institutional and Faculty, Department or School levels.

Prof Alabi said the Project is therefore expected to come out with two policy briefs on Quality Assurance and Governance of Higher Education in Ghana.

Mr Kwame Dattey, Executive Secretary, National Accreditation Board, commended the CODESRIA and the UPSA for the initiative and said the project, when completed would serve as a harmonized set of guidelines for the promotion of quality education especially in the tertiary educational sector.

Source: GNA

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