the need to ‘look good’

Dear Folks,

There is a need to not just be good quality, but be seen to be good quality in the eyes of those involved (internal face validity) and in the eyes of outsiders (external face validity). This point was the topic in the comments to a report by Libby Sander (2013) in the Chronicle yesterday raising questions over the right or qualification of non-college graduates to pass judgement on the quality of higher education. (It was taken one step further questioning the right or qualification of academics to pass judgement on the quality of non-college experience and learning – which of course has some impact on prior learning assessment and recognition : PLAR.) Where university graduates themselves find poor employability then internal as well as the external face validity of higher education is reported as lacking. This is worrying. I would suggest that external face validity is an important aspect to quality assurance and quality improvement, and indeed to future employability. The report finds that assessment of achieved learning should take centre stage in place of credit hours, and all this leaves the door open to reusing OER as the way forward ~

all best wishes


Sander, L. (2013). Americans value higher education but question its quality, national survey finds. Chronicle of Higher Education, 5 February. Retrieved February 6, 2013, from

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