QUALITY EVALUATION REGARDING DISTANCE UNDERGRADUATE COURSES: REFLECTIONS ABOUT BRAZILIAN CONTEXT
Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul - PUCRS (BRAZIL)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2014 Proceedings
Publication year: 2014
Conference name: 8th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 10-12 March, 2014
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:This paper, entitled "Quality Evaluation regarding distance undergraduate courses: reflections about Brazilian context", aimed to investigate aspects related to quality assurance of distance undergraduate in Brazil. To do this a critical study where performed comparing Brazilian and international accreditation processes, especially in USA. The research can be characterized as a qualitative and descriptive work supported by literature review and case study with evaluators and coordinators of distance education undergraduate courses. Data from the instruments were processed using Discourse Textual Analysis (DTA). We studied the evaluation of undergraduate distance in the USA related to quality indicators adopted by accreditation agencies, and compare them with Brazilian evaluation process. The study allows us to infer the consequences and the degree of confidence that may arise related to measuring the quality of courses with Brazilian process using a process based on multi concepts of quality assurance and the acceptation of indicators degrees of quality. As a result of this research we point out the need to establish a quality assurance process based on a unique conceptual meaning of quality in distance education that can express the excellence of the offered courses. This excellence goes through select evaluators with training, knowledge and experience in Distance Education courses, adequate criteria and accurate parameters for this educational modality. Moreover, it is necessary to have a Bank of Appraisers not only able to exercise its function with due his/her quality background, but in number enough to put into practice the system evaluation set.
Keywords: Quality in Higher Education, Quality in Distance Education, Quality Assurance, Quality Indicators, Accreditation.