Determinants of Tertiary Education Quality in Bangladesh | Higher Education | Teachers

Determinants of Tertiary Education Quality in Bangladesh

Md. Kaysher Hamid#1, Md. Jobair Bin Habib#2, Shaila Nazneen#3
#1 #2

Department of Finance & Banking, Jahangirnagar University, Savar-1342, Dhaka, Bangladesh Department of Finance & Banking, Jahangirnagar University, Savar-1342, Dhaka, Bangladesh #3 Department of Finance & Banking, Jahangirnagar University, Savar-1342, Dhaka, Bangladesh
1kaysher_h21@yahoo.com greenleaf.shuvo@gmail.com 3shailanazneen@ymail.com

2

Abstract—The concept of quality in tertiary education, which entails creating and advancing knowledge for developing enlightened citizens especially those who can contribute to the development of a country, is multifaceted in nature. It can only be ensured by activities and functions of quality control mechanism which are carried out by the graduates in their university academic period. But in case of Bangladesh there is no specific quality assurance mechanism effective rather different evaluation criteria are used in public universities, private universities, and tertiary level colleges. And most of the cases there is no provision of external review of quality. As a result measuring tertiary education quality as a whole in most cases becomes difficult. But irrespective of the institution there are some common issues or determinants which significantly affect tertiary education quality. The objectives of this paper are to identify those determinants and evaluate their relative importance with respect to ensuring tertiary education quality. To perform the objectives, primary data was collected through formal questionnaire from 167 respondents including teachers and students of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) by random sampling method. Primarily this research takes into account 20 determinants i.e. entry requirements of the students, sound teaching ability, impartiality in evaluation, sincerity of teacher, accountability of teacher, communication capability of teacher, infrastructural facilities, research opportunities, seminar and workshops, teacher politics, student politics, class size, session jam, reputation of the institution, program curricula, practical application of knowledge, career potentials, medium of instructions, extracurricular activities, and cost of education, as effective in ensuring tertiary education quality. From the analysis of respondents’ data, it was found that sincerity of teacher was the most important determinant in ensuring tertiary education quality while communication capability of the teacher was second. The determinants which are of lowest value to respondents are teacher politics followed by student politics. After the analysis of data this paper makes an overview on current status of these determinants in Bangladesh. Finally this paper offers some recommendations regarding the enhancement of tertiary education quality in Bangladesh for making the graduates more competent in facing the challenges of 21st century. Keywords— Tertiary Education, Education Quality, Quality Control Mechanism, UGC, HEQEP

I. INTRODUCTION In this era of globalization when people are experiencing rapid changes in their standard of living with explosive growth in knowledge and information, the necessity of higher education is also increasing. Because higher education prepares competent, knowledgeable and far-sighted people for assuming various higher responsibilities (e.g. [1]). In addition the issue of quality in higher education is also becoming louder day by day. And this is increasing the responsibility of higher educational institutions to ensure quality in their quality control mechanism. But there is still no specific consensus on how best to measure and manage the quality of higher education. (e.g. [2]) Several literatures try to define the concept of quality in higher education (HE) and find out the determinants or factors of quality in higher education (HE). But none of them is exhaustive to understand and explain the concept of quality in higher education because higher education quality is a rather vague and controversial concept (e.g. [3]). Quality refers to the four pillars of education: learning to know, learning to do, and learning to live together and with others, and learning to be (e.g. [4]).A broad range of factors affect quality in tertiary institutions including their vision and goals, the talent and expertise of the teaching staff, admission and assessment standards, the teaching and learning environment, the employability of its graduates (relevance to the labour market), the quality of the library and laboratories, management effectiveness, governance and leadership(e.g. [5]). The quality of higher education is affected by the 4 Cs forces: i) The changing University customs characteristics, ii) Increasing competition, iii) Rising costs, and iv) The impending crises. To understand these forces, institutions of higher education need to continuously improve and strengthen themselves or else they cease to be centres of academic excellence (e.g. [6]) Garvin proposed that five industrial definitions of quality can be interpreted for higher education as: transcendent quality, where the educators can be treated as producers who

RESEARCH METHODOLOGY To fulfil the stated objectives this research is designed as descriptive type. In the questionnaire all the variables were developed on a 5 point Likert Scale and these were coded from 1 to 5 (strongly unimportant to strongly important).g. has undertaken a Higher Education Quality Enhancement Project (HEQEP) planned to prepare students at tertiary level specially the university graduates in such way that they can successfully compete in the context of international knowledge society (e. wants. websites. Prof. Shamsul Haque Education Committee in 1997.g. There is no specific quality assurance mechanism in Bangladesh rather the higher educational institutions follows different mechanisms. Product-based quality. Bari Commission in 2002. Ministry of Education is responsible for posting. revenues. gender effects and expected satisfaction with higher education.g. namely Dr. These factors can differ from institutions to institutions as there is no specific quality control mechanism effective in Bangladesh. Bangladesh Research and Education Network (BdREN) and Project Management (PM). . M. articles. and student related factors.g.g. education production and research and technology production. To ensure the relevance. publications. no accountability system and no academic auditing system in Bangladesh to ensure the quality of higher education (e. transfer and promotion of teachers. But irrespective of institutions some determinants can be identified which significantly affect the tertiary education quality. To meet the challenges of raising higher education quality standard. [8]) identified variables in six broad areas to analyze the quality of higher education. Qudrat-e Khuda Education commission 1971.(e. A.HIGHER EDUCATION QUALITY IN BANGLADESH In Bangladesh higher education consists of a 3 year passcourse or a 4 year honours course for the bachelor’s degree. To identify the determinants of quality higher education primarily data were collected from 167 respondents by allocating 42 variables under 5 factors i. Andaleeb focused nine critical factors to revitalize quality of higher education. desires. And Secondary data come from different books. After the collection of data. program specific factors.(e. followed by a two year Master’s course for pass graduates and a one-year Master’s course for honours graduates.[12]).g. And both primary and secondary data are employed in this study.g. Several studies have been conducted to examine the spectrum and factors affecting quality higher education in Bangladesh (e. The style of managing the public universities in Bangladesh has totally damaged the accountability and quality assurance of higher education (e. [17]) III. peer group discussions consisting of 60 members were conducted to identify common 20 most important determinants responsible for quality tertiary education in Bangladesh. II. And the objectives of this study are to • Identify the determinants affecting tertiary education quality in Bangladesh • Evaluate the relative importance of those determinants in the issue of quality education IV. [9]). [10]). Private universities receive approval from the UGC to operate and award degrees but no funding. and Education Policy 2010 were taken for the development of quality of total education system. personnel. There are no accreditation agencies. institute related factors. Primary data have been collected through formal questionnaire from 167 respondents consisting of teachers and students of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) by random sampling method.g. teacher quality. (e. Kobir Chowdhury commission 2009. administrative efficacy. [7]) Andrea Bonaccorsi et al. user-based quality which defines the quality of higher education by the customer's needs. [11]) Several education commissions and report.g. University Grants Commission (UGC) as the apex body of the government for higher education is responsible for funding of public universities. teacher’s quality related factors. [15]). [14]. necessary checking and cross checking are done while scanning information and data from the secondary sources. with the assistance of the World Bank. expenditures. magazines etc. But none of them became fruitful. Dr. and preferences. reliability and timeliness of data. when. peer quality. (e. Mohammad Moniruzzaman Mia Commission 2003. Higher Education Management Information System (HEMIS). From the discussion selected top 20 determinants responsible for ensuring tertiary education quality are Entry requirements of the students(ER). direct facilities. OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY As the concept of quality in tertiary education is multifaceted in nature.provide expert training and professional standing. Factors are. indirect facilities.e. method and content. [16]). general information on HEIs. That’s why measuring tertiary education quality as a whole most of the cases cannot be possible. Those areas are. and how well. political climate. a broad range of factors related to functions and activities that form part of the academic life in a university system can be identified affecting quality in tertiary institutions. it decides what to produce. At present there are 82 universities in Bangladesh of which 31 are public and 51 are private universities. the Ministry of Education. [13]. valuebased quality which resemblances value when the product (education in this case) performs at or above expectation compared to its cost. The Higher Education Quality Enhancement Project (HEQEP) consists of four components: Academic Innovation Fund (AIF). manufacturing-based quality in which the college or university is the manufacturer and as such. admission related factors. As a result both public and private universities are suffering from quality problems (e. Tertiary colleges are under the NU and its responsibility is limited to setting up curriculum and organizing and administering exams.

31 0.20 0.07 0.08 3 4 4 ST 4. From table it is seen that sincerity of teacher is the most important determinant for quality tertiary education with the rank of 1. After that the data are analysed by descriptive statistics to generalize the information and finally by summing up the total value the determinants are ranked according to their importance given by the respondents.02 0. And cost of education is indicating indifference while teachers politics and student politics is showing value of 2. class size.23 0. cost of education and infrastructural facilities as important for ensuring quality in tertiary education.07 1 4 4 MI 3. accountability of teacher.23 and 2. From the mode value of the determinants it is seen that most of the respondents think that sound teaching ability. career potentials. The determinant in the 2nd rank is communication capability of teachers.97 0. research opportunities. sound teaching ability. extracurricular activities. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION A) Descriptive Statistics Table 1 below is the summary of descriptive statistics of the selected determinates. impartiality in evaluation.07 4 4 4 CCT 4.06 7 4 4 TABLE II RANKING OF THE DETERMINANTS Rank Total Value 1 720 2 715 3 707 4 706 5 703 6 688 7 680 8 677 9 675 10 671 11 663 12 661 13 659 14 654 15 644 16 633 17 563 18 460 19 372 20 368 . Reputation of the institution(RI). infrastructural facilities are showing mean value around 4 ranging from 3. sound teaching ability. program curricula.86 0. V.07 8 4 5 CP 4.07 4 4 5 SW 4.07 0 4 4 PIK 4. seminar and workshops. Class size(CS).Impartiality in Evaluation(IE).37 0.28 0. Other determinants according to their ranking are infrastructural facilities. seminar & workshop.10 6 2 1 CS 3. reputation of the institution. Program curricula(PC). Session jam(SJ). medium of instructions. seminar and workshops. and Cost of education(CE). According to the summated value ranking of the variables from highest to lowest value is shown in Table II. program curricula.07 5 4 4 STA 4. Communication Capability of teacher(CCT). medium of instructions. medium of instruction. Among the others most of the respondents evaluate entry requirements.23 0. sincerity of teachers.06 7 4 5 AT 3.09 3 4 4 IF 4.08 0 4 4 CE 3.79 to 4. Sound teaching ability(STA).79 0. accountability of teacher. Infrastructural facilities(IF). And teacher’s politics. Student politics(SP). practical implication of knowledge are strongly important for quality tertiary education. communication capability of teachers. Seminar and Workshops(SW).12 8 3 1 RI 4. extracurricular activities.21 0.05 0. B) Raking of the Determinants In this study the 167 respondent give value to each variable from the scale of 1 to 5. entry requirements. career potentials. Career Potentials(CP).06 6 4 4 TP 2.95 0. sincerity of teacher. Teachers politics(TP). Research Opportunities(RO).31 which means these determinants are on an average important for the quality tertiary education.20 respectively which means that these are unimportant for quality tertiary education. The determinants which are of lowest value to respondents are teachers politics followed by student politics also. Medium of instructions(MI).14 0. research opportunities. student politics and session jam are selected as strongly unimportant for this regard.07 9 4 4 SJ 2. Accountability of teacher(AT). TABLE I DESCRIPTIVE STATISTICS OF THE VARIABLES ER Mean Standard Error Median Mode 4. Sincerity of teacher(ST). practical implication of knowledge. Here it is found that in the scale of 1 to 5 entry requirements. communication capability of teacher.96 0. research opportunities.75 0. program curricula. class size. reputation of the institution.23 0. accountability of teachers.07 1 4 4 EA 3. Extracurricular activities(EA). cost of education.06 9 5 5 RO 4. Practical implication of knowledge(PIK).07 1 4 5 IE 3. practical implication of knowledge. career potentials. impartiality in evaluation. impartiality in evaluation.11 2 1 1 SP 2. class size.04 0. reputation of the institution.08 0 4 5 PC 3. session jam.92 0.

Updated. Oct. Higher Education Policy. From perspective Bangladesh the quality of tertiary education still remains in a questionable situation. H.25-43. Issues and Prospects”. vol. Massachusetts: Edward elgar publishing ltd. K.. Vol. “Revitalizing Higher Education in Bangladesh: Insights from Alumni and Policy Prescriptions ”. the quality of tertiary education is decreasing day by day. 2011 Monem. vol. J. 30(2).vol. vol. Problem and Prospects”. nasty students and teacher’s politics.. 2012. But in Bangladesh the history of university research is very poor. M. REFERENCES [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] Mobasser Monem and Hasan Muhammad Baniamin.116. low quality of training. “ Private higher education in Bangladesh”. UNESCO Website [Online] Available: www. “Higher Education in Bangladesh: Status.gov. lack of combination of knowledge and practice. S.. pp.. G. & Farjana.gov. Oct. International journal for the scholarship of Teaching and Learning. (2012) The HEQEP-UGC Website [Online]. J.. vol. D. 7.bd University Grants Commission (UGC) of Bangladesh.unesco. For this.bd Haque. 22-31. pp. • To ensure the quality of teachers a monitoring body under the control of UGC can be established to assess the quality. pp 59-70. Andaleeb. Hoque. “Multi-Models of Quality in Education”. pp. F. 5(2).heqep-ugc. 5(1). 293-305. Bangladesh needs graduates who can think independently and are willing to strive and experiment with new ways to bring Bangladesh out of the vicious circle of poverty.. 2006. M. 1984 Bonaccorsi. H.. No specific quality control mechanism is available in this system yet. growing opportunities and investments in the marketplace. & Tam. For nation building and national development efforts. Strict measures should be taken by the concerned authority to free higher educational institutions from political interfere. 30. M. incomplete education commissions and policies. • As there is no accountability system and no academic auditing system in Bangladesh to ensure the quality of higher education. Paris. 2010 Gravin. Pakistan Journal of Social Sciences (PJSS). 7. & Md. “University Competiveness through Quality assurance. “Managing Quality Higher Education in Bangladesh: Lessons from the Singaporean and Malaysian Strategies and Reforms”. • • Adequate research facility is considered to be an integral part of university education. increased economic activities. Available: http://www. 2011 Islam. vol. So there is a need to introduce proper policy in order to minimize the problems that are prevailing in the higher education system. pp 59-70. “Managing Quality Higher Education in Bangladesh: Lessons from the Singaporean and Malaysian Strategies and Reforms”.16(4). Syed Saad. Research paper. But the importance of quality in higher education cannot be underestimated in any means. 1997 Delors. less research opportunities.. International Journal of Business and Management. “ Satisfaction of Student Services in Tertiary Level: Perspective Bangladesh”. Dhaka: UGC. Mohsin. Issues and Prospects” Pakistan Journal of Social Science. And higher education is the supreme mechanism for producing manpower competent to taking challenges for ensuring economic growth of a county. Moreover due to absence of long-term vision. & Md. need-based and international standard syllabus should be followed in higher educational institution. So policy regarding funding and creating environment of research work should be developed.. vol. “What does product quality mean?” Sloan Management Revalue System. International Journal of Business and Management. Aktar Kamal. M. M. weak financial base and shortage of qualified teachers. 293-305. vol. Available: http://www. Das. International Institute for education plan. & Bainamin. By analysing the quality issues of tertiary education in Bangladesh and based on the study finding the following recommendations are suggested regarding the enhancement of tertiary education quality in Bangladesh • For every universities a uniform admission policy can be adopted like the SAT or TOFEL students attend when apply for foreign universities.org (2007) The World Bank Website[Online] Available: www. 2010 Alam. Y. Cinzia. Dec 2010 Mohsin. recruitment and efficiency of teachers. S. inadequate library and laboratory facilities..banbeis. the government can establish an autonomous body for ensuring specific quality requirements for all universities. civil society and university authority are need in collaboratively. R. specialization and performance in Europe. Publication No.2003 . poor capacity and quality of graduates. “Tertiary Education in Bangladesh-Brief History. 2007 (2011) The BANBIES website [Online]. Andrea and Daraio. As a result Bangladesh is losing its articulation and image that making its inappropriate in the present competitive market economy. (1996). European Journal of Social Science. & Siddiqui.. Univesities and strategic knowledge creation. 2012. M. 19(2). Cheng. M.. 2007. For a developing country like Bangladesh higher education has enormous potential to promote prosperity. The Challenging Battle for Intellectuals". Annual Report..worldbank.Determinants ST CCT IF RO STA PIK SW CP ER RI PC AT IE ME EA CS CE SJ TP SP • VI. traditional teaching methods. pp. A. “ Higher Education in Bangladesh: Status. Quality Assurance in Education. D. 26.org Mpaata A. joint efforts of the government. Aktar Kamal. W. Y. CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS For the overall development of a country it needs adequately trained manpower.

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