Quality Assurance of Higher Education in the UK: Regulatory Change and Market Competition – the Case of Law
Palabras clave:Quality Assurance, UK, Higher Education, Reform, Law
Quality Assurance of UK Higher Education, the wider regulation of the sector and of those who teach and research within it has experienced significant change within recent years. The scale of these changes looks set to intensify as the Higher Education and Research Bill makes its way through Parliament. Core themes under-pinning these changes are a Government desire to generate further competition within the sector through the arrival of new providers alongside more detailed sets of information to inform consumer (student) choice. Similar challenges can be witnessed within the legal education sector as one of the key regulators of the legal profession is currently consulting on far-reaching reforms, designed to diversify the routes towards professional qualification. Although the UK does not have a state certification process for academic staff, increasing attention has been brought to bear on institutions to demonstrate that their staff hold teaching qualifications. Quality assurance activities and processes have taken an increasingly central place within the UK HE landscape over the last 25 years or so. However, the future balance between highly developed quality assurance mechanisms, state-regulation and a competitive open market appears uncertain. Law exemplifies many of the challenges facing the sector as a whole.
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