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Interdisciplinary Academic Essays - Humanities, Arts, Education, Social Sciences

Forschungsarbeit 2011 156 Seiten

Sozialwissenschaften allgemein

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ETUDE COMPAREE DE CONSTRUCTIONS DE QUESTIONS DE WH- EN FRANCAIS ET EN YORUBA

Résumé

La construction du mouvement de WH- est une structure grammaticale qui facilite obligatoirement le déplacement d ’ un syntagme ou de toute proposition introduite par unélément linguistique de WH- ( WH- en anglais et QU- en français). Cette sorte de mouvement syntaxique pose un grand probl è me de compréhension et d ’ usage auxétudiants anglophones. Voilàpourquoi nous voulons utiliser cette communication pour faciliter sa compréhension, en la discutant en forme comparée entre le français et le yoruba, par lesétudiants et les linguistes.

ETUDE COMPAREE DE CONSTRUCTIONS DE QUESTIONS DE WH- EN FRANCAIS ET EN YORUBA

INTRODUCTION

Le mouvement de WH- est une modalité qui implique le déplacement d’un syntagme ou de toute proposition introduite par un élément linguistique de WH- (WH- en anglais et QU- en français). Quelques linguistes tels que Akmajian et Heny (1975), Culicover (1976) et même Chomsky (1977) pensent que ces éléments de WH- relève de la Structure Profonde (désormais SP) au moyen des règles de la structure syntagmatique. Selon eux, la plupart des structures de WH- se montrent comme des déterminants mais fonctionnent comme des spécifieurs (specifiers en anglais). Ayant donc trait aux éléments de spécifieurs, ils sont des adjuvants grâce auxquels on peut élargir le nœud de NP dans une phrase. C’est la combinaison de ces éléments de spécificité, en forme de WH-, engendrés par la SP, avec les nœuds nominaux de la phrase, qui produit un seul syntagme nominal. C’est ce dernier qui fonctionne comme le sujet de la phrase transformée en Structure Superficielle (désormais SS), qui déclenche le mouvement de ces éléments de WH- dans la phrase en question.

Pour Culicover (1976), les éléments linguistiques qui contiennent WH-, trouvésàl’initial des phrases interrogatives tels que Why, Who, What, When, Where, Whose, Whom, Which, Which one, et même How, How much (en anglais) sont les mots les plus touchés par le mouvement syntaxique. Ce mouvement peut se former soitàtravers l’inversion du sujet et de l’objet, soitàtravers le déplacement de ces éléments de leur position initiale (à la fin de la phrase dans la SP)àune nouvelle position au début de la phrase (dans la SS). Prenons ces phrases pour exemples :

1a. Tunde est mon professeur. (Phrase déclarative)
1b. Tunde est qui ? (phrase interrogative - SP)
1c. Qui est Tunde ? (phrase interrogative - SS)

Mais Culicover n’explique pas ce qui se passeàla position (ou point) d’extraction de ces éléments interrogatifs en forme de WH- après leur déplacement syntagmatique. Il ne nous dit point la relation entre le point d’extraction, le point de débarquement, les éléments linguistiques déplacés et comment les tracer. Chomsky a-t-il constaté ce défaut en 1977 lorsqu’il publiait Essays on Form and Interpretation pour donner une position corrective. Cette position théorique est un développement de sa première position déclarée en 1973 avec “Conditions on Transformations”. Ces deux publications nous offrent l’argument qu’il y a des contraintes dans les systèmes descriptifs de la grammaire. Il a donc suggéré que les règles de transformations et de mouvement syntaxique ne parlent que du mouvement de WH- et le mouvement du NP. C’estàtravers ces deux sortes de mouvements syntaxiques, d’après Chomsky, qu’on peut bien analyser et expliquer tous les processus du mouvement qui ont lieu dans les langues naturelles. Il est utile de rappeler ici, les équivalents français de ces éléments de WH-. Ce sont Qui, Quoi, Que/Qu’, Quand, Pourquoi, Quel, et leurs variantes : (Quelle, lequel, laquelle, lesquels, lesquelles), dont, comment, combien, où, tandis que, alors que. Leurs équivalents en yorùbá sont Ta ni, Kí ni, Èwo ni, Irúfé wo ni, Báwo ni, Eéèló ni, Níbo ni, Ìgbà wo ni, NÍtorí ki ni. Notons que les éléments de WH- sont utilisés pour former des phrases interrogatives. Ils se rencontrent également dans des syntagmes et des propositions non-interrogatives. Nous en donnerons des exemples pour justifier notre position.

Chomsky (1977, 1981, 1982, 1986), Rigter et Beukeman (1985) et Ajeigbe (1986) ont décrit les questions de WH- comme des « questions généralement ouvertes ». Elles sont ‘ouvertes’ parce qu’elles permettent aux interlocuteurs de répondreàleur gré. En d’autres termes, contrairementàla réponseàune seule forme, celles faites aux questions ‘ouvertes’ sont des formes diverses suivant la personne ou la psychologie du répondant ou de l’interlocuteur. Les questions de WH- sont ainsi caractérisées parce qu’elles sont introduites par des éléments de la catégorie WH-. En voici des exemples :

2. Qui a t-il vu ?

3. Lequel préférez - vous ?

4. O ù allez-vous ?

5. O ù est Ol ú ?

6. Quand est-ce que vous allez retourner ?

7. Comment allez-vous?

8. Pourquoi avez-vous réponduàsa question?

9. Quel est votre nom?

10. Combien d ’ habits voulez-vous acheter ?

Un examen de ces neuf phrases françaises (2 - 10) révèle des similarités entre elles :

(a.) Toutes les phrases sont des phrases interrogatives.

(b.) Toutes les questions exigent des explications (ouvertes) dans les réponses qui leur correspondent.

(c.) Chacune de ces phrases est introduite par unélément interrogatif de la catégorie WH- anglais.

Ce ne sont pas les structures finales de ces phrases qui nous concernent mais la manière dont on a formé et présenté ces structures. Toutes ces structures (2 - 10) sont des SS. Les mots de WH- n’occupent pas leur position actuelle (au début de la phrase) dans leur SP. Mais c’est la transformation grammaticale en forme de mouvement de WH- qui a fait déplacer les mots de WH- de leur position initiale dans SP pour les mettre dans une nouvelle position dans la SS. La dernière observation se justifie par les traces et les espaces vides que le déplacement laisse chaque fois qu’il y a un mouvement de cette sorte. Si le mouvement que nous venons d’expliquer n’avait pas eu lieu, les dites phrases (2 - 10) auraient les formes respectives qui suivent:

11. Il a vu qui?

12. Vous préférez lequel?

13. Vous allez o ù ?

14. Ol ú est o ù ?

15. Vous allez retourner quand?

16. Vous allez comment?

17. Vous avez réponduàsa questionàcause de quoi (pourquoi )?

18. Votre nom est quoi?

19. Vous voulez acheter combien d ’ habits ?

Un examen attentif des phrases (11 - 19) montre que bien que ces phrases soient toutes grammaticales et logiques en tant que structures interrogatives, elles représentent des phrases interrogatives du français parlé ; elles ont la forme de phrases déclaratives excepté la ponctuation ou le ton tendu qui accompagne le mot interrogatif. De telles phrases ne sont pas forméesàpartir du déplacement de mots de WH-. Or, Ndimele (1992), comme d’autres transformationalistes, soutient que pour qu’il y ait une variété de phrases interrogatives, on doit avoir le déplacement de WH- de sa position initiale dans la SP. D’après lui, ce mouvement est obligatoire, car seuls ces éléments de WH-, présentés au début de la phrase introduisent facilement l’idée interrogative dans la phrase en question. Et ce sont les idées exprimées par les éléments linguistiques dans les environnements de ces mots de WH- qui peuvent être questionnées. Cette observation est valable pour la langue française.

Il est nécessaire de noter aussi que la plupart des mots de WH- en français (sauf tandis que et alors que) contiennent chacun une seule unité. Mais tous les mots de WH- en yorùbá se terminent avec le mot ni. La raison en est que le mot qui marque l’aspect interrogatif dans la construction de la focalisation interrogative en yorùbá est ni. Pour indiquer que le locuteur pose une question dans une construction de focalisation interrogative en yorùbá, il doit introduire la marque de focalisation interrogative ni (immédiatement) après le pronom ou l’adverbe interrogatif utilisé. Mais dans le cas où l’on ne veut pas poser la question dans une construction de focalisation interrogative, ou bien que nous voudrions utiliser la SP de ces phrases interrogatives en yorùbá, la copule ni tombe. Dans une situation où la proposition qui contient un de ces éléments de WH- de yorùbá est une proposition complétive ou une proposition relative d’une phrase déclarative, la copule ni disparaît. Nous en proposons des exemples dans les phrases suivantes :

20a. Vous appelez-vousétudiant. (SP) Vous vous appelezétudiant. (SP). (Déclarative)
20b. Vous vous appelez comment ? (SP Interrogative)
20c. Comment vous vous appelez ? Comment vous appelez-vous ? (SS Interrogative)

21a.

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21b.

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21c.

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Selon ces trois schémas, la phrase 21a est déclarative. Sa SP est ‘ Vous appelez-vousétudiant ’ . C’est la transformation qui facilite le mouvement du pronom, vous, après le verbe pour reveniràune position vide (marquée par e avant le verbe pour que nous ayons la SS comme‘ Vous appelez-vousétudiant ’ . Dans le cas de la phrase 21b, elle est la SP interrogative de la phrase 21c. L’objet ‘ é tudiant ’ est remplacé par le mot interrogatif de WH-, ‘ comment ’ . C e mot interrogatif de WH- qui étaitàla fin de la phrase 21b se déplace au début de la phrase 21càtravers la transformation. On aurait une phrase interrogative telle que ‘ Comment vous appelez-vous ? ’ On peut trouver d’autres exemples dans les phrases ci-dessous :

22a. Il a connu mon fr è re.

22b. Il a connu qui ? 22c. Qui a-t-il connu ?

23a.Or ú ko mi ni Ol ú . (Mon nom est Olu ou Je m ’ appelle Olu.)

23b. Or ú ko mi ni k í ? (Mon nom est quoi ou Je m ’ appelle quoi ?) 23c. K í ni or ú ko mi? (Quel est mon nom?)

24a.

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24b.

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24c.

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K í ni orúko mi (e)?

La phrase 24a est une phrase déclarative. Sa SP est ‘ Or ú ko mi ni Ol ú . (Mon nom est Olu ou Je m ’ appelle Olu.) ’ L a phrase 24b est la SP interrogative de la phrase 24c. L’objet de la phrase 24b, ‘ Ol ú’ , est remplacé par le mot interrogatif de WH-, ‘ k í’ . C e mot interrogatif de WH- qui étaitàla fin de la phrase 24b se déplace au début de la phrase 24càtravers la transformation. On aurait une phrase interrogative telle que ‘ K í ni or ú ko mi? (Quel est mon nom?) ’ Les phrases ci-dessous en sont d’autres exemples:

25. Ta ni ó rí ? -➔ (Qui as-tu vu ?)

26. Èwo ni o fé ? ➔ (Lequel préférez-vous ?)

27. Nibo ni ò n lo? ➔ (Où vas-tu?)

28. Olú dà ? (Olú nko ?) ➔ (Où est Olu?)

29. Olú dà ? (Olú nko ?) ➔ (Où est Olu?)

30. Báwo ni nnkan (se n lo pèlú yín?) ➔ (Comment vont les choses avec vous?)

31. Kí ni ó dé tí è fi dáhùn sí ìbéèrè rè? ➔ (Pourquoi vous ne répondez pas à sa question ?)

32. Kí ni orúko yín? ➔ (Comment vous appelez-vous ?)

33. Aso mélòó ni e fé rà? ➔ (Combiens de vêtements voulez-vous acheter ?)

Comme nous avons noté en haut, on peut constater aussi que toutes ces phrases interrogatives en 25à33 en yoruba sont interrogatives, exigent une réponse explicativement ouverte et chacune de ces phrases est introduite par au moins un type de mot en WH-.

Il estànoter que toutes ces structures 25à33 sont des SS. Les mots de WH- n’occupent pas leur position actuelle (au début de la phrase) dans leur SP. Grâceàla transformation grammaticale en forme de mouvement de WH-, on a fait déplacer les mots de WH- de leur position initiale dans SP pour le placeràune nouvelle position dans la SS. On peut bien justifier cette assertionàtravers les traces et les espaces vides que ce déplacement laisse chaque fois qu’il y a un mouvement de cette sorte. Nous soulignons que s’il n’y avait pas eu ce mouvement que nous venons d’expliquer, les phrases 25à33 auraient été dans les formes qui suivent:

34. O rí ta (ni)?

35. O fé èwo ?

36. Ò n lo sí ibo?

37. Olú wà níbo ?

38. E máa de nígbà wo?

39. Nnkan n lo pèlú yín báwo?

40. E dáhùn sí ìbéèrè rè nítorí kí (ni)?

41. Orúko yín ni kí (ni)?

42. E fé ra aso mélòó?

Un examen attentif des phrases 34 à 42 révèle que bien que ces phrases soient toutes correctes grammaticalement et logiquement en tant que structures interrogatives, elles représentent des phrases interrogatives en forme de ‘écho’ (des phrases interrogatives qui ne le sont que par le ton tendu.) Aucune n’a résulté de l’introduction et du déplacement de mots de WH-. Or, les linguistes transformationalistes insistent que pour qu’il y ait une variété de phrases interrogatives, on doit avoir le déplacement de WH- de sa position initiale dans la SP. Cette position est valable pour le yorùbá. La grammaire du yorùbá comprend même une structure spéciale de quelques phrases interrogatives. Prenons l’exemple des phrases yorùbá (28), Ol ú d à ? (qui est la SP) dont la SS est (37), Ol ú wàn í bo ? Une analyse logique et grammaticale de ces deux phrases nous dirait que la phrase 28 n’a pas de verbe.

Dans sa classification des phrases et des marques interrogatives utilisées pour construire des structures interrogatives en yorùbá, Bamgbose (1990) est d’avis que nous pouvons former une phrase interrogative avec « des verbes interrogatifs » (òrò ìse asebéèrè) tels que dà, nkó. Il nous donne des exemples dans ces phrases :

43. Omo dà? (O ù est l ’ enfant?)

44. Isénk ó ? (Comment va le travail?) (cf, Bamgbose 1990:185).

Or, faisons remarquer que cette classification n’est pas juste. Nous ne voyons que des adverbes interrogatifs dans ces deux éléments linguistiques nommés « verbes interrogatifs » par ce linguiste yorùbá de grande renommée!

Pour bien prouver notre position, nous présentons les traits linguistiquesàtravers lesquels on peut bien tester et identifier les verbes en yorùbá :

(a) Un élément linguistique accepté comme un verbe en yorùbá doit pouvoir être nominalisé;

45. Mò n lo sí èkó. ➔ àlo (Je vais à Lagos. ➔ l’aller.)

46. Mò n lo sí èkó. ➔ àlo (Je vais à Lagos. ➔ l’aller.)

(b) Un élément linguistique accepté comme un verbe en yorùbá doit pouvoir être doublé pour être utilisé comme sujet dans la construction de Focalisation :

47. Lo ➔ Lílo ni mo lo sí èkó. (Ce que j’ai fait c’est, d’aller à Lagos.)

48. Bò ➔ Bíbò ni mò bò làti èkó. (Ce que j’ai fait, c]’est de revenir de Lagos.)

(c) Un élément linguistique accepté comme un verbe en yorùbá doit pouvoir être transformé en forme négative pour être utilisé dans les phrases négatives:

49. Lo ➔ Mi ò lo sí èkó. (Je ne vais pas à Lagos)

50. Bò ➔ Mi ò bò làti èkó. (Je ne viens pas de Lagos).

On peut se demander si on peut appliquer ces trois conditions linguistiquesàdà et nkó :

51. Olú dà ? ➔ *Ìdà ➔ *Dídà ➔ * Olú kò dà.

52. Olú nkó? ➔ *Inko ➔ *Kinko ➔ *Olú kò nkó.

Jamais, on ne peut nominaliser, ni redoubler, ni rendre en forme négative dà ou nkó pour en faire des mots ou des phrases grammaticalement et logiquement correctes comme on a fait dans les exemples de phrases (45à50).

Comme l’étude grammaticale structurale de chaque langue a une dimension diachronique (l’analyse de l’usage d’une langue choisieàtravers la grammaire ou ce qu’on disait au passé) et la synchronie (l’analyse de l’usage de cette même langueàtravers ce qu’on ditàl’heure actuelle), nous allons considérer l’analyse diachronique de ces phrases. Si on se réfèreàl’ancien yorùbá que l’évêque Ajayi Crowther avait utilisé en 1884 pour traduire la Bible de l’anglais en yorùbá, on constaterait que la SP de ces phrases est :

53. Olú ha dà ? / Olu wa nkó ?

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54. Olú (e) dà?/ Olú (e) nkó

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Le verbe de ces phrases est ha et wa respectivement. C’est l’évolution linguistique du yorùbá qui semble expliquer la suppression du verbe de ces phrases et les structures actuelles que nous utilisons (de nos jours):

55. Olú dà?

56. Olú nkó?

En considérant l’analyse synchronique du yorùbá pour justifier l’existence de ces deux phrases sans verbe, on noterait deux dialectes de yorùbá - Ìlàje et Ìkálè - qui ont supprimé l’adverbe au lieu du verbe. Ils disent ‘Olú ha?’ (Où est Olú?) Voilà pourquoi la réponseàces questions soit en yorùbá standard soit en dialectes de yorùbá ne se construit qu’à travers ce verbe supprimé.

On dit :

57. Ó wàni (NP … ) (en yor ù b á standard.)

58. Ó ha ni (NP) … (en dialectes d ’Ì làje et d ’Ì k á l è .)

Ce qui signifie :

59. Il est à… (NP) … . (en français.)

Constatonsàce propos que nous avons des phrases interrogatives en yorùbá qui n’ont pas de verbe.

Conclusion

Avec toutes ces explications on peut en conclure que bien qu’il y ait des similarités structurelles dans la formation des constructions de WH- de ces deux langues de notre étude, il ya des particularités reconnueàla grammaire Yoruba. On a bien noté l’exigence de l’usage de la construction de focalisation pour la formation des constructions de WH- en yoruba. On ne peut pas nier aussi des phrases interrogatives sans verbe en yoruba.

RÉFÉRENCES BIBLIOGRAPHIQUES

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An Appraisal of Quality Assurance Issues in promoting Programmes in Higher Education: Case Study of the National Open University of Nigeria

Olu Akeusola, PhD

Associate Professor of French and Comparative Grammar, Department of French, School of Arts and Social Sciences, National Open University of Nigeria, Lagos, Nigeria.

Christine Y Ofulue, PhD

Senior Lecturer (English Linguistics), Department of English, School of Arts and Social Sciences, National Open University of Nigeria, Lagos, Nigeria.

An Appraisal of Quality Assurance Issues in promoting Programmes in Higher Education: Case Study of the National Open University of Nigeria

Abstract

Assuring quality of higher education has become more critical in the face of globalisation of education which is a major characteristic of the knowledge economy of the 21st century. The importance of assuring quality is underscored by the existence of institutional, national, and international agencies established to ensure that higher educational institutions and their programmes meet certain stipulated set of minimum standards. In developing countries like Nigeria where provision of higher education is primarily a public service, globalisation of the knowledge economy has made it imperative for educational programmes to meet not only national standards but also global standards and best practices. In addition, the emergence of private universities, cross- border education, and degree mills that offer low quality educational delivery and qualifications, provision of higher education has brought another dimension to the fore that is, a commercialised approach to higher education. A major outcome of this development is the competition engendered among higher education providers and the use of quality indices to promote their goods and services. This paper seeks to examine issues of quality and the role they play in the promotion of higher education programmes in general and distance higher education in particular using the National Open University of Nigeria as a case study.

Introduction

‘Higher education is the backbone of any society and the quality of higher education determines the quality of human resources of a country’ (2006, 10). Among other functions, higher education essentially has a major responsibility to produce a qualified, skilled and globally competent workforce for the labour market of business and industry which is a critical factor to national growth and development (p.6). Recent developments such as increasing student enrolments; reduced state funding for public higher education; increasing number of private providers; internationalisation cross border education have also influenced the purpose and functions of higher education (Hays, 2010). The need global competiveness is another recent development that has impacted higher education. In Nigeria, some of these recent developments are reflected in mission statement of the National Universities Commission (NUC), which is the regulatory body established to oversee the administration and delivery of higher education in Nigeria: ‘to ensure the orderly development of a well coordinated and productive university system that will guarantee quality and relevant education for national development and global competitiveness ’ (NUC, 2010).

The origins of quality, as a concept, date back to the 20th century in the industry and management. The evolvement of industrialisation and the scientific approach to the management of its division of labour brought about the issue of quality (2006, 16). Olubor and Ogonor (2008:4) define concept quality assurance as: a set of activities or procedures that an organization undertakes to ensure that standards are specified and reached consistently for a product or series. Its goals are to create reliable systems by anticipating problems and designing procedures to avoid as many errors and faults as possible.

Right away from the commencement of the notion of quality assurance, emphasis has been laid on ‘ set of activities or procedures that an organization undertakes to ensure that standards are specified and reached consistently for a product or series ’ But the introduction of mechanised mass production of goods and services brought about a change in who was responsible for checking quality. Responsibility for quality shifted from the individual to supervisors for inspection and quality control checks. Thereafter, came Quality assurance followed by Total Quality Management. While the inspection model to quality is characterised by its limitation to physical goods, the quality control model emphasised product testing. This is followed by quality assurance models which focus on the use of statistics, system audits, and external accreditation; and is followed by Total Quality Management models which emphasise quality as the responsibility of all staff members instead of the staff in the Quality department, and continuous improvement, a weakness that is inherent in earlier models. The chronological and hierarchical developments in the evolution of the concept of quality are illustrated in tables 1 and 2 respectively:

Table 1: Chronological development of Quality

illustration not visible in this excerpt

Source: Sallis (1996) cited in Mishra (2006).

Table 2: Hierarchical development of Quality

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Source: Dale and Plunkett (1980) cited in Mishra (2006)

The implications of quality management for higher education is reflected in Green and Harvey’s (1993 cited in Kanwar, 2006) five-fold definition of quality: 1) Quality as exceptional (exceeding high standards); 2) Quality as consistent (zero defect); 3) Quality as fitness for purpose (fulfilling need); 4) Quality as value for money (satisfactory returns); and 5) Quality as transformation (of the participant). Quality in higher education means that the educational process is designed to fulfill certain standards that will ensure that the goals and needs of the stakeholders are met, both students and the society (2006, p 15). There are several reasons why higher education systems should be concerned about quality. Some of the reasons proffered include:

- increasing competition among educational institutions for students and funds occasioned by globalization and the GATS (Global Agreement on Trade in Services);
- increasing demand in customer satisfaction to get value for their money in the form of quality teaching that leads to the acquisition of employable skills and competencies;
- maintaining standards which requires effort to improve on provision of goods and services;
- accountability by ensuring efficient and effective use of funds; and credibility that evolves as a result of consistency in provisions of quality goods and services.

Other reasons are the need for visibility, prestige and status to attract stakeholder support for institutions and quality employment placements for the graduates. An institution’s concern for quality also motivates and impacts the attitude of staff in carrying out their duties. The various definitions of quality provide the basis for a working definition of quality assurance as “Those mechanisms and procedures designed to reassure the various ‘stakeholders’ in higher education that institutions accord a high priority to implementing policies designed to maintain and enhance institutional effectiveness” (Harvey and Green 1993, cited in Kanwar, 2006). In this paper, the working definition of Quality Assurance as value for money will be adopted since the target audience for educational promotions are the prospective students and their guardians whose main interest is to pay to acquire employable knowledge, skills and competencies. We will examine the scope of Quality assurance of higher education institutions in Nigeria; the current application of quality control model vis a viz a total quality management model, the graduates; the integration of a culture of quality with examples from a single mode ODL institution, the National Open University of Nigeria; and the impact of quality on the promotional value of higher education programmes.

Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Generally, QA processes cover assessment and accreditation of institutions and programmes that take place periodically. The processes include:

- Development of Standards (e.g. minimum bench marks)
- Internal Institutional self-assessment (should be on a continuous basis)
- External/peer review (periodic basis)
- Recommendations based on analysis of statistical data and performance indicators
- Accreditation (periodic)

Torre (2010) notes that a ‘‘general model’ of External Quality Assurance (EQA) does not universally apply, but most elements of it do apply in most countries in common principles and similar standards (of evaluation)’. The common elements include:

- Similar stages of accreditation (Self-evaluation - external evaluation - Decision of the QAA)
- Similar guidelines and orientation for external reviewers
- Equivalent systems and instruments for collecting information
- Similar policies for reporting public information
- Similar documentation and materials: manuals, forms, questionnaires, etc.

At the NUC, the stages of accreditation reflect the same common elements:

- Application by institutions for the establishment of new programmes;
- Pre-accreditation on-site visit at the commencement of new programmes to determine if programme can be accredited by fulfilling minimum benchmarks/standards;
- Preparation and submission of self-study reports of programme to be accredited;
- On-site visit by team of external assessors for validation of report;
- Recommendation to NUC of the assessment outcome; and
- Decision of NUC
- Periodic re-accreditation

The accreditation guidelines constitute the standards required:

A number of issues arise from the kinds of approaches adopted to assure quality in African Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) including Nigeria. A first issue concerns the continued use of Quality control models that engender compliance and that do not meet the needs of the current dispensation. HEIs have come to view QA exercises as a one- time activity for the purpose of obtaining accreditation for their programmes because of the punitive measures in place if they do not comply. In the current dispensation where the concept of Quality assurance has evolved beyond quality control, and HEIs have at their disposal opportunities to achieve credibility and create a niche in the industry through multiple accreditation by various credible Quality Assurance agencies at international and regional levels, both the national EQA agency and HEIs have every reason to update and upgrade their QA activities. A second issue of Quality, which is not unrelated to the continued use of Quality control models, is the need to view Quality Assurance as a continuous process rather than as a period event. Current approaches to QA reflect the key features of the Total Quality Management model which include viewing Quality assurance as:

- As a continuous process
- As specific to context
- As involving al stakeholders; and that is
- Committed to innovation and excellence (Kanwar 2006)

A third issue of Quality is the lack of integration of QA processes into the sub-systems and sub- units of HEIs in Nigeria. Integration of QA processes is a characteristic of TQM. Most institutions, in Nigeria, are yet to establish internal institutional quality assurance units nor have quality assurance policies that are designed to be implemented at all sub-system levels and by all sub-units within the institution. By implication, internal institutional self-assessments and external reviews by agencies other than the national QA agency, which are designed to assist institutions to take ownership of their QA processes with the view of improving the quality of their products and services, are not common practice. A culture of quality is an internal process rather than the external process of quality control; quality is integrated into all sub-systems and units of the institution, and is shared by all members of the institution rather than limited to a unit in charge of quality issues. Through supporting policies, adequate funding and monitoring, an institution takes ownership of a culture of quality. Although the goal of accreditation exercises is to ensure that HEI programmes achieve minimum standards, it does not guarantee quality, the key criteria in global higher education ranking exercises and consequently critical for effective promotional efforts.

Quality Assurance of the educational process covers the entire scope from admission through to assessment; curriculum design and content; learner support; and the outcomes in terms of its value and recognition. Currently, in its capacity as an External Quality Assurance Agency (EQA), the NUC carries out programme audits only, not institutional audits. The critical aspects to be quality assured are 1) curriculum 2) teaching, learning and evaluation 3) research 4) infrastructure and learning resources 5) student support and progression 6) governance 7) innovative practices.

Quality Assurance of Open and Distance Learning (ODL) Programmes

With origins in the industralisation era, ODL is more attuned to the concept of quality. In fact, QA processes are an integral part of ODL operations by virtue of its foundations in the industrial era. (Keegan, 1996). Ironically, it is the same industrial mass production approach to education that has attracted perceived misconceptions about the quality of education provision through ODL as being second rate to traditional forms of learning. The issue of quality and the concept of ODL in higher education are almost inseparable by virtue of the responsibility imposed on ODL delivery systems to demonstrate that it is able to deliver significant improvement in terms of increased access to higher education at relatively reduced costs without compromising quality. However, the features of flexibility and increased access which make ODL attractive are the same features that constitute a source of suspicion by institutions and the public who believe that education cannot be massified without compromising quality (Butterfield, 1996).

It was noted that massification of higher education is a result of increased population growth and increase in population with interest in higher education. It was also noted that the merits and demerits of massification included an increased human resource base, access to better employment opportunities. However, if massification of higher education is not adequately supported with adequate physical and human resources, it could compromise quality resulting in low quality of graduates (AfriQAN, 2009). ODL is an opportunity for developing countries like Nigeria to meet their huge needs for human capacity development in meeting the challenges of the 21st century (Jegede 2007, 2009, COL Forum 2009). That ODL has the potential to provide enhanced quality education to more people at relatively reduced costs by virtue of a system that has QA mechanisms integrated into the policies, processes and procedures is one of its main contributions. However, how to improve on quality has been a major issue at different fora and it is viewed and seen as one of the pertinent issues for ODL in the 21st century (RETRIDAL 2007, 2009, COL 2009, AfriQAN 2009).

Characteristic features of Contact HE institutions and ODL HE institutions:

Higher education through ODL and contact institutions share common learning outcomes such as acquisition of knowledge, skills and competencies. Although the key indicators are the generally the same, ODL has special features which should be reflected in the assessment framework. For example, assessment of ODL administration, delivery of instruction, student support, Information Technology infrastructure, and assessment procedures are key indicators of quality in ODL provision (DEC, SAIDE 2004, Jegede, 2009). Specifically, contact institutions are characterized by:

illustration not visible in this excerpt

Source: Adapted from Kanwar (2006)

These features should be reflected in the assessment and standards framework. Contact HEIs differ from ODL institutions in terms of measuring institutional carrying capacity and staff- student ratio. For example, a low learner - staff ratio is a standard key indicator of quality in HE provision in contact institutions because learning is by contact while the opposite, high learner - staff ratio, is the case in ODL institutions of ODL’s ability to make a minimal number of staff available to a large population of students because learning is bridged by technological interfaces. Programme administration is another key indicator of quality whereby it is the curricula and syllabi for contact institutions and self instructional materials for ODL institutions. In view of the fact that more ODL learners are adults, emphasis is on an andragogical approach to course design.

As a single mode open and distance learning institution, the goal of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) is to make education accessible to as many people as are sufficiently prepared, able, and willing to benefit from the various levels of higher education provided through the distance learning mode. Based on the fact that Course material design and development are central to the fulfilment of this goal, the institution has since inception invested considerably in training in instructional design, development, and production of self instructional materials for the various programmes on offer. The processes of course design and development for NOUN, and how quality is ensured is briefly described here:

The process of programme design and development is guided by the minimum standards provided by the national accreditation agency and by the process of Instructional design and development which involves a systematic analysis of learning needs and goals, and the development of a delivery system to meet those needs. To ensure quality, the process is based on instructional theories. The instructional design process adopted by NOUN is illustrated in Figure 1 below:

Figure 1: Instructional Design Process

illustration not visible in this excerpt

Source: NOUN (2009)

The needs of learners are identified taking into consideration their profile as adult learners and instructional goals are set based on those needs. A curriculum (Detailed Programme Proposal) that outlines the programme’s aims and goals and philosophy; learning outcomes; admission requirements; and courses is designed based on the analysed needs and goals as well as the national quality assurance and accreditation agency’s minimum benchmarks. Appropriate learning materials and delivery system are identified, selected, and developed to attain identified needs. The programme design is submitted to external experts for further assessment before adopted. ODL systems are more responsive to societal changes and demands for various programmes. There is a course description/specification for each course within the programme. Quality of course content is further assured through the adoption of a course team approach comprising subject experts as writers and editor, media specialists and instructional designers. The course content is structured into modules and units by the writers and vetted by the editor. The learning objectives of each module, and then of each unit are developed based on the identified topics and relevant content material which is sourced to attain these objectives. Relevant questions and activities to assess learners’ attainment of the stated objectives are also developed (NOUN, 2009). Self instructional materials are assessed based on several indicators including structure and format of content to facilitate learners’ understanding and access to the information. Self instructional materials go a long way to promote the quality of educational delivery of an ODL system in terms of the quality of their design and development as well as the flexibility and accessibility they provide to learning. Quality of the course content is maintained and improved on through the review of the materials every five years to update the content. In realisation of the central role instructional materials play in the success of educational delivery

NOUN continues to improve on her design by adopting an instructional systems design approach to course material development. These quality assurance processes are in addition to the processes that apply to HE programmes in general.

Conclusion and Recommendations

In this paper, we examined three issues that characterise the current global Quality Assurance terrain. The issues are the adoption of TQM as an appropriate Quality assurance model, cultivation of a culture of quality, and integration of internal quality assurance processes. We noted that although these are globally accepted good practices that should improve quality of HE programmes, most Nigerian universities and indeed the national accrediting body is yet to adopt these practices. We noted that by virtue of its origins and development, ODL systems as illustrated by NOUN integrate quality assurance processes. Our assessment suggests that the general perception of Quality Assurance as a one- time activity and its effects on the quality of education prevents HEIs from being able to compete with international HEIs as illustrated by the findings of cross border education providers.

Despite the questionable quality of some cross border education programmes, Nigerian HEIs can still learn some lessons from them on how to promote academic programmes using quality based indicators. To be able to compete favourably with cross border education providers globally, there is the critical need for the national EQA agency to update its QA processes and minimum standards, encourage internal quality assurance processes, and to include institutional accreditation. Nigerian HEIs on their part need to embrace Quality in a more holistic manner by establishing IQA policies and mechanisms, and establish the culture of quality that will promote its goods and services.

References

African Quality Assurance Network (2009). Report of Workshop & Annual General Meeting Accra, Ghana, 25th - 27th November 2009

Assessment and Accreditation of Open and Distance Learning Institutions: Guidelines to the Institutions. Distance Education Council, Indira Gandhi National Open University, New Delhi.

Hay, Mark (2010) External Quality Assurance and Higher Education Social Responsiveness

Presented at the 11th Biennial INQAAHE Forum, Windhoek, 6 May 2010

Hussein, Syed A. (2010). Quality Assurance and the Transnational: Exporting Importing Higher Education. Presented at the 11th Biennial INQAAHE Forum, Windhoek, 6 May 2010. Jegede, Olugbemiro (2007). Developing ODL Quality Culture. COL-RETRIDAL Workshop, Winneba Ghana.

Kanwar, Asha (2006). Quality Assurance in Distance Education. RETRIDAL Quality Assurance Workshop, May 2006 Lagos.

Keegan, D. (1996) Foundations of Distance Education. Routledge Studies in Distance Education Koul Badri N. and Kanwar, Asha (eds.) (2006). Perspectives on Distance Education: Towards a Culture of Quality. Canada: Commonwealth of Learning (COL)

Mishra, S. (2006) Quality Assurance in Higher Education: An Introduction. India: National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC in collaboration with Commonwealth of Learning (COL).

National Open University of Nigeria (2009) Tseja, S.G (General ed.), U. Okonkwo & C. Ofulue (Content eds.). Course Material Development in Open & Distance Learning: Training Manual. Nigeria: NOUN.

National Open University COL Forum Secretariat (2009). Report of the Commonwealth of Learning Forum (COL) on A Decade Of Distance Education In The Commonwealth: Achievements And Challenges, Abuja Nigeria.

NUC (2010) National Universities Commission Website www.nuc.edu.g

OECD (2005). Guidelines for Quality Provision in Cross-Border Higher Education Retrieved on 1/8/10 from http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/27/51/35779480.pdf

Olubor, R.O. & Ogonor; B.O (2008) Quality Assurance in Open and Distance Learning in National Open University of Nigeria: Concepts, Challenges, Prospects and Recommendations. A paper presented at the 2nd ACDE Conference and General Assembly Eko Hotel and Suites, Lagos, Nigeria, Thursday 8th July to Friday, July 11th Open and Distance Learning Quality Council (2005). Standards in Open and Distance Learning. Retrieved on 1/08/10 from http://www.odlqc.org.uk/standard.htm

SAIDE (2004) Policy Advice Report: Advice to the Minister of Education on Aspects of Distance Education Provision in South African Higher Education. Retreived on 1/08/10 from http://www.che.ac.za/documents/d000089/CHE-Policy_Advice_Report_March2004.pdf

Sharing Quality Higher Education Across Borders: A Statement on Behalf of Higher Education

Institutions Worldwide (2005). Retrieved on 5/08/10 at

http://www.chea.org/pdf/StatementFinal0105.pdf

Torre, Daniela (2010) QA Agencies between the Global and the Local. Paper presented at Windhoek, Namibia, Wednesday 5th May 2010.

In The Cause Of The People of Liberia.

- Ambassador. Prof. Dew Tuan-Wleh Mayson.

(Presidential Candidate in 2011 Liberian elections)

- ii In the Cause of the People

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Dedication, iv

Appreciation, v Introduction, vi

Dew Tuan-Wleh Mayson

Introduction iii

Dew Tuan-Wleh Mayson

iv In the Cause of the People

DEDICATION

This writing is dedicated

To: The Memory of Mr. Albert Porte who blazed the trail and provided the example which inspired all of us to join the progressive struggle of our people.

To: The Memory of Mr. G. Bacchus Mathews, one of our most dedicated militants: courage in his person and revolutionary rhetoric on his lips, Man-Pekin, for whom we continue to mourn, and

To: Dr. Togba Nah Tipoteh and all the brothers and sisters who must continue to struggle for rice and rights, for economic development and democracy, so that Oldman Porte, Bacchus, and all our fallen colleagues will sleep in peace.

[...]

Details

Seiten
156
Jahr
2011
ISBN (eBook)
9783640840762
ISBN (Buch)
9783640840113
Dateigröße
1 MB
Sprache
Englisch
Katalognummer
v166400
Schlagworte
interdisciplinary academic essays humanities arts education social sciences

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Titel: Interdisciplinary Academic Essays - Humanities, Arts, Education, Social Sciences