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2011, Cilt 1, Sayı 2, Sayfa(lar) 059-065
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DOI: 10.5961/jhes.2011.009
Quality Assurance: Strategic Choices for Higher Education in Turkey
Mahmut ÖZER1, Bekir S. GÜR2, Talip KÜÇÜKCAN3
1Zonguldak Karaelmas University, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Electrical Electronics Engineering, ZONGULDAK, TURKEY
2Yıldırım Beyazıt University, Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences, Computer Engineering Department, ANKARA, TURKEY
3Marmara University, Institute of Middle East Studies, İSTANBUL, TURKEY
Keywords: Higher education, Quality assurance, Turkish Council of Higher Education

As the number of students and higher education institutions in the world increases and there is a growing difficulty in financing the higher education systems, decision-makers have begun to show more interest in quality assurance. As quality assurance is given special attention in European countries, developing countries such as Turkey are interested in importing quality assurance systems. It is not possible to set quality assurance without sensitivity toward quality and without having quality as a cultural practice. The most likely encountered quality assurance approach in the world is that the higher education institution itself is responsible for its quality. In addition, external quality assurance procedures used are based on (academic) peer review rather than on bureaucratic evaluations. Moreover, there is a lively debate across the world regarding the bureaucratic regulations of the quality assurance agencies and institutions that restrict the autonomy of higher education institutions. Without taking into consideration of the existing centralized structure of the higher education system in Turkey, of meeting social demands for the higher education, and of current higher education enrollment rates, the possible establishment of a quality assurance mechanism that may have sanctions on universities in Turkey is a threat to already limited autonomy of universities and is having a risk of additional bureaucratic burden. By laying out the roles and responsibilities of Turkish Council of Higher Education, the government and universities, this article discusses policies that should be adopted regarding the quality assurance.

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