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|Designing a Model for Augmenting Quality in Higher Education (AQHE) in India: An Empirical Study of Engineering Institutions
|Student satisfaction;Higher Education Quality;Engineering Institutions;Academic Culture
|The role of engineers in creating employment opportunities and contributing to a country's growth is crucial. Therefore, it is imperative to examine the current state of engineering education to ensure its quality and relevance in addressing the challenges of the dynamic 21st century, influenced by globalization. With the rising number of engineering institutions in India surpassing the demand, the significance of quality becomes paramount in today's competitive business environment. The notion of quality in technical education is gaining global recognition and Indian providers of technical education have also recognized the need for quality education to sustain their institutions and produce competent engineers. The year 1990 holds significant importance in the history of higher education quality assurance. It marked a turning point when the federal Department of Education in the United States recognized accrediting organizations that assess institutional performance based on student learning outcomes. This recognition paved the way for the development of new quality assurance agencies and practices, although there was initial resistance and a need for improvements. Over time, there has been a growing emphasis on reviewing the quality of student learning, particularly through institutional accreditation, which traditionally focused on resources and strategies. This shift towards outcomes has also been observed in quality reviews of universities worldwide. India, too, is embracing this new approach to measuring and ensuring quality. The present study aims to develop a model for augmenting the quality of higher education (AQHE) in India. This empirical research relies on a literature survey to identify and select critical success factors (CSFs) relevant to the study. The study investigates the interactions among these CSFs to implement the AQHE model, focusing on the perspectives of faculty members and students from technical institutes in five selected states of India. The ultimate goal is to improve the performance of higher education institutions (HEIs). This study holds great importance as the performance of higher education has a substantial impact on individuals, institutions and society as a whole. The final structural model highlights the significance of several critical success factors in higher education, including academic culture, academic environment, academic operations, student engagement, learning assessment, student satisfaction, employability of students, employee involvement, employee attraction and transnational branding of institutions. This information can be utilized by institutions to establish performance management systems, implement quality assurance frameworks, enhance student retention rates and effectively integrate new technologies. Consequently, the study offers a validated model that can guide planners in the higher education sector, enabling them to strategically focus on specific critical success factors and improve the overall performance of Higher Education Institutions (HEIs).
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