n South African Journal of Higher Education - Differentiated quality assurance for the African Virtual University's teacher education qualification in mathematics and science

Volume 22, Issue 6
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



For the African Virtual University and its consortium of African universities the implementation of quality promoting initiatives are not without challenges and scepticisms. To be discussed in this article is the case of a teacher education qualification in ten different African countries. Seven countries were sampled and visited in 2006 with the aim of understanding quality assurance cultures and practices used for promoting quality. Findings showed that quality assurance processes manifest at various levels of readiness and maturity. The uneven quality assurance landscape led me to propose a ten-tiered differentiated Quality Assurance Framework. In analogy to Vygotsky's theory of the 'zone of feasible development' I suggest the presence of do-able next steps where an institution can set their own priorities and timelines for reform towards quality. Self-paced planning I contend, will not be branded as techno-bureaucratic control, but will serve a developmental purpose towards inculcation and ownership of quality milestones.

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