Continuous Quality Assurance: Adapting Tqm for Community Colleges
The growing demand for colleges and universities to be accountable to their publics and the recognition that assessment is of little value without a systematic planning effort have led many institutions to turn to the concept of Total Quality Management (TQM). This pamphlet discusses the process of adapting TQM to a typical community college, a process called Continuous Quality Assurance (CQA), and is divided into six chapters. The first chapter, "Forces for Change in Higher Education," describes the recent calls for accountability and the responses made by higher education to those calls. Chapter 2, "An International Focus on Quality," reviews the TQM theory, its practice in Japan, and emerging trends toward quality in business and industry. "Quality in Higher Education," the third chapter, discusses applications of TQM to higher education and some major differences between business and education, including the absence of profitability in education, increased departmental loyalties in educational institutions, and the lack of a perceived crisis in education. Chapter 4, "Continuous Quality Assurance in a Community College," outlines the philosophical approach behind CQA, while chapter 5, "Assessment and Planning for Continuous Quality Assurance," describes the mechanisms (i.e., databases, alumni follow-up, and effective assessment services) that must be in place to implement CQA. Finally, "Implications of a Quality Focus" highlights the benefits of CQA, including providing evidence of institutional effectiveness, a mechanism for preparing funding proposals, and a vehicle for identifying and setting institutional priorities. (Contains 12 references.) (BCY)
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