Shaoxing University (CHINA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN13 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Pages: 2418-2423
ISBN: 978-84-616-3822-2
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 5th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 1-3 July, 2013
Location: Barcelona, Spain
In mass higher education time, most of higher education institutions are real-world oriented and their graduates are expected to work in real-world circumstances. Higher institutions are required to develop new programs quickly at low cost in order to meet the ever-changing needs from society. The solution to this problem is to improve the agility of higher education systems. Agility means the ability of a university or a higher education system to respond the changes of human resource needs quickly at a low cost. Because the academic resources of university are limited, the adjustment of programs or its curricula should be based on the utilization of current resources rather than on the increase of academic staff and other relevant resources. From this viewpoint, re-organizing of the fundamental academic organization at universities and reform the way in which curriculum developed are of great importance in improving the agility of higher institutions. In this paper, based on the analysis of similarities between the manufacturing system and higher education system, we applied the principle of agile manufacturing to higher education in order to improve the agility of higher education system in talent training on undergraduate level. Two enablers of agile manufacturing, virtual organization and mass customization are introduced into higher education system in new program construction and curriculum reform to improve the agility of the higher education system. The study shows that it is a reasonable and effective way to improve the agility of higher institutions by introducing the principle of agile manufacturing into higher education. The study also indicates that the framework of agile higher education proposed in this paper is mainly suitable for applied universities in the time of mass higher education.
Educational management, agile higher education, undergraduate program development, curriculum construction.