The Challenges of Quality Assurance in Private Higher Education Institutions in South Africa

Jacqueline Baumgardt, Mapheleba Lekhetho


Private providers operate in a complex educational environment in South Africa, which makes quality assurance cumbersome. The education authorities have gradually recognised that private providers have a valuable role to play in the provision of education and training in South Africa and the need to create a more enabling regulatory environment for private providers. To probe the views of stakeholders on the quality assurance challenges they face, the study adopted a mixed methods design collecting data from 93 research participants consisting of accreditation managers, the CEOs of professional bodies, the managers of quality assurance bodies and the Skills Universe Forum using online surveys and focus group discussion. The findings show that the majority of participants supported quality assurance mechanisms as they ensure delivery of quality education and training. However, some stakeholders are critical of the current complex regulatory framework. Hence, there is a call for a more streamlined system with a centralised oversight body, greater stakeholder consultation, less political interference and a deeper appreciation for the contribution that private providers make to education in South Africa.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2013.v4n3p421

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This work is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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