Academics coping with quality: a study of attitudes towards quality assurance in Georgian higher education

Mariam Shurgaia

Abstract


The purpose of this study is to identify those individual and context-specific variables that serve as predictors of academics’ attitudes towards the change associated with the implementation of internal quality assurance (IQA) systems in Georgian universities. Such variables as the academics’ perceptions of the quality of change management and the perceived outcomes of changes introduced by IQA, along with the individual characteristics of academics are measured as possible predictors of academics’ attitudes towards change. A questionnaire containing items with Likert-type answer scales was distributed to academic staff (n=210) of three public and two private universities located in the capital of Georgia. As the findings suggest, in general, academics have positive attitudes towards current and upcoming changes offered by IQA systems. The perceived favourability of outcomes as well as the perceived high involvement in change processes play significant roles in defining positive attitudes. On the other hand, negative attitudes are influenced by the perceived low involvement in change processes and low self-efficacy. As a whole, these findings have practical implications for university leadership as to how to manage changes introduced by IQA systems in a manner that ensures the commitment of academic staff.


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© 2014 WPHES

ISSN 2411-2445