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Tertiary teaching and learning quality project

28 January 2004 Media Statement

Tertiary teaching and learning quality project announced

The government is to look at how to enhance the quality of tertiary education teaching and learning this year, Associate Education (Tertiary Education) Minister Steve Maharey said today.

The Enhancing Quality Project will investigate how existing quality assurance arrangements can be enhanced to support better teaching and learning. It is part of moves to develop a stronger ‘culture of quality’ within the tertiary education sector, which includes:
- the need to maintain and enhance the quality of student’s learning outcomes;
- an understanding, commitment to use and sense of responsibility for the systems which are in place for maintaining and enhancing quality (that is, continual improvement); and
- ensuring that effective infrastructure and processes are in place so that continual quality improvement can be guaranteed at each tertiary education organisation.

The Project will be guided by an expert working group drawn from the tertiary education sector. An initial scoping exercise is now underway to seek the opinions of stakeholders on the key issues to be included for investigation.

Steve Maharey said the Project is a key step in realising the objective included in the five year Tertiary Education Strategy that ‘learners and the wider public have confidence in high levels of quality throughout the system’.

“The government wants to ensure better educational outcomes for all learners. This project will look at what further infrastructure, systems and processes are needed to ensure teaching and learning excellence are consistently achieved.

“The oversight of quality assurance in the tertiary education sector is the responsibility of the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA), and other quality assurance bodies, and will remain so. The government believes that it is important to separate NZQA’s responsibilities for quality assurance from the Tertiary Education Commission’s responsibilities for allocating funding.

“The project was recommended by the now disbanded Tertiary Education Advisory Commission and will build on the reforms and initiatives already undertaken. Relevant measures introduced by the Labour-led government including the establishment of a tertiary complaints function within the Office of the Ombudsman, the introduction of academic audits for private training establishments and the establishment of annual Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards,” Steve Maharey said.


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