Higher Education Environment

Higher Education Environment

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2265-2.ch001
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Abstract

Tertiary education faces a new era as expectations for good quality education are increasing. Globalization and knowledge Society formed new conditions on the global economic and geopolitical scene, and led higher education ahead to new challenges which require a redefinition of its role. These challenges have created new opportunities, new collaborations and new ways of managing Higher Education Institutions. In response to the demand for higher quality products and services, a growing number of Higher Education Institutions worldwide are implementing Total Quality Management (TQM) and the Deming Management Method. The first chapter is designed to provide the reader an overview of the role of Higher Education Institutions and the implications of globalization and knowledge society on tertiary education. Furthermore, this chapter deals with the strategic challenges of Higher Education Institutions and their strategic response to those challenges, focused on Deming and Total Quality Management.
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Globalization And Higher Education Institutions

Last century was marked by a terrible fact for humanity, World War II. The Second War worldwide affected all levels of our planet. New facts occurred that shaped the subsequent geopolitical and economic forces. According to Neubauer (2007), geopolitical and economic forces appeared such as the increased global trade, the international business growth, the potential for an interruption in the world's oil supply that could be the “Achilles' heel” of economic growth around the globe, the increasing number of jobs to be moved offshore, and three major trends such as the growing Irrelevance of distance, shifts in the rates of growth of countries and the rise of megacities. The above mentioned forces and trends will increase the levels of globalization in business, marketplace, economic strength, workforce, science and technology.

A major and multilevel academic revolution has occurred in higher education in the past half century. In 1900, there were recorded just 500,000 student enrollments in higher education institutions worldwide, representing one percent of college age people (Banks, 2001). By 2000, the number of tertiary students had grown two hundredfold to approximately 100 million people, which represents about 20 percent of college age people worldwide especially in the latter part of the century (Schofer & Meyer, 2005).

Before World War II, higher education, especially in Europe, created a mass of national elites required by closed national castes and occupational systems. The society was in need of some secondary school teachers, doctors, lawyers (especially civil servants), and priests (Paulsen [1893] 1906). Also a few scientists were necessary. Although there was the belief and the fear of “overeducation,” right after about 1960, the whole “overeducation” theme weakened, (Freeman, 1976). The older view seemed quaint and outdated towards the new rational view that education creates generalized human capital that benefits both individuals and society (Berg, 1970; Windolf, 1997).

Fiala and Lanford (1987) stated that in this period, national statements about the purposes of education shifted from a model of education as fitting people for a static labor market to a conception of education as producing human capital for national socioeconomic expansion.

The new model of postwar postmodernist society was characterized by indicators who linked to the following institutional changes that legitimated a liberal, rationalist and developmental worldwide pattern of increased higher education expansion:

  • 1.

    Democratization, liberalization, and the expansion of human rights reinforced the capacity of individuals for unlimited education (Chabbott, 1999).

  • 2.

    The worldwide expansion of science and increasing scientization of society turned education into a pillar of growth and enhancement of human potentials (Drori et al., 2003).

The dynamic of the postwar conditions led education, in the early twentieth century, in a competitive transformation. The new challenge for Universities is to compete for status, ranking, and for funding from government or private sources. Competition has always been a force in academic community leading to excellence (Altbach, 2013).

Globalization, as a fundamental concept of 21st century, has profoundly affected higher education. According to Altbach (2007a), globalization is defined as the reality shaped by the following significant factors: (a) an increasingly integrated world economy, (b) innovative information and communications technology, (c) the emergence of an international knowledge network, (d) the role of the English language, and (e) other forces beyond the control of academic institutions.

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