- Show more
The evolution of the idea of quality in education
The present work aims to make a review of the concept "education" in the context of academic instruction and under the optics of an understanding of it more or less homogeneous, based on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in its article 26.In turn, it will be investigated on the diversity of concepts of the term “quality” since it has been used to define activities that produce intangibles both as palpable products. In the end some of the historical moments in which the terms, education and quality began to be linked to be linked.
Keywords: education, quality, quality education
This work has its origin in the reading of the article ’10 barriers to education worldwide’ (10 Barriers to Education Around the World) that Phineas Rueckert published on August 13 of the present on the global citizen page, whose content puts inevidence that there are many things to do in education. With the same name there are more than eight pages and in one of them I educate Child (EAC) I found a notable difference;In the article by Global Citizen it is proposed that education is a basic human right, while in EAC that the inalienable right of each child to a quality education is indicated, which according to them was first recognized in 1948 in the declarationUniversal Human Rights.
Discrepancy seems small, education or quality education as an essential right, but it is finally contradictory information that I think it is important to clarify.At the end of World War II, 50 countries signed the letter with which it was created from the United Nations Organization (UN) in 1945, which has among its determinations’ … reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, … in theRights of equality of men and women … ‘Three years later, in 1948, the organization adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, an expression of shared values, of what the human being, basic rights, the rights, the rights mean, the rights meanspoliticians, freedom of thought, expression and religion, the right to work and economic security.
There, in article 26 it is established that every person has the right to education, which must be free, at least the elementary that will be mandatory and that access to higher studies will be the same for all, depending on the respective merits .As is evident, in the Declaration of Human Rights of 1948, only reference is made to education in general, as stated in the Global Citizen article, while the concept of quality cannot be included in that statement, because it appears ineducation many decades later.
The term quality does not have a universally accepted definition, since it is proposed that there are different definitions that are appropriate in different circumstances (Garvin, 1984; Reeves and Bednar, 1994; Seawright and Young, 1996; Russell and Miles, 1998; Beaumont andSohal, 1999; Sebastianellli and Tamimi, 2002; Ojasalo, 2006) . In addition, quality has been defined as excellence (Tuchman, 1980), as value (Feigenbaum, 1951), as compliance with the specifications (Shewhart, 1931; Levitt, 1972), as compliance with the requirements (Crosby, 1979), asAptitude for use (Juran, 1974; 1988), as desirable attributes of the product (Leffler, 1982), such as avoiding losses (Taguchi, 1987) and how to meet customer expectations (Ryall and Kruithof, 2001; ISO 9000, 2005).
Although the term is old, quality as a concept was developed in the field of work;Historically, the quality control of what a worker produces was a personal matter, in the thirteenth century the artisans began to organize in unions, in them the quality of a product was used as a necessary criteria to belong to it. The manufacture in the industrialized world followed the artisanal model for a certain time, with the industrial revolution the production began to supervise through specialized workers, which verified the work of the large groups . Frederick w. Taylor studied the productivity of the company and introduced the principles of scientific administration and the division of labor in 1911, in its principles it indicates that the quality of a workplace is largely determined by the quality of its employees.
The development of quality control during the 1930s allowed important contributions to the success of industrial production during World War II, in manufacturing industries and military applications. In 1946 the American society for quality control was established and a section in Toronto was formed in 1946 and another in Mexico in 1951;In 1964 the Pan American Congress of Quality Control was held in Mexico and in 1965 the First International Quality Control Congress was held in Japan. In the educational field the concept of quality can be recognized since the 1930s, when the Federal Government of the United States made public the role of the subsidy of schools and studies arose in terms of cost and benefit.
In the early 60s, very little was known about the United States schools and about the financing and distribution of resources;At the end of that decade in the movement of effective schools, among others, the investigation of James Coleman was used with his evidence that school financing has little effect on student performance, while facing the problems of racial segregation and the greatinflation of the 70s. In 1980, there was a growing concern that the quality of public education had decreased since the mid -sixties. This led to Milton Friedman’s 1983 study that recommended more rigorous standards, salary merits and other reforms to increase national competitiveness .
Education accountability is formalized in the early 1990s when you think about the need to have excellent schools that achieve notable results and standardized test scores became the way of measuring educational quality. A standardized test is an evaluation instrument that is administered and described by default and common and are of two main types, tests of aptitude and performance tests. These aptitude tests predict the probability of how well, students can perform in some subsequent educational environment. The performance tests are instruments that are intended to make valid inferences about the knowledge and/or the skills that a student possesses in an area of particular knowledge.
For several reasons, says W. James Popham ., Standardized performance tests should not be used to judge the quality of education;In principle because the students’ scores do not provide an exact index of educational effectiveness and thus, any inference to the quality made on the basis of the tests in the tests may not be valid. The mission of performance tests is different from what indicates how good or bad is a school. In any case, says Popham, because educational quality is measured with a wrong criterion, the conclusions are probable to be wrong.
However, little by little the idea of educational quality is imposed and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) justifies it that ‘… Quality and quality insurance issues are of greater importance in the sector ofhigher education…’ . At the beginning of the 2000s, the initiative of common basic state standards was introduced in the United States to ensure that the students of the country received a similar quality of education, to ensure that each one had the same opportunity to attend the university laterFrom high school .
The initiative generated great controversy, because although it was admitted that somehow it could benefit students, it was necessary to take into account that the standards do not always work for each school or for each student. But one of the biggest problems faced by the initiative was its emphasis on standardized tests, which were raised, affect teachers and the quality of teaching. On this basis that seems confused, the quality of education is introduced into our country driven by the State and seems to be accepted without greater opposition, although there are dissident voices that indicate that ‘… the ambiguity present in the discourse on educational quality… that is exposed in the documents … of education in Mexico, it is the result of the alignment of these with different speeches that circulate internationally … produced and disseminated by international organizations … ‘.
Although others consider that ‘… in the educational systems of many countries, concern regarding the assurance of people’s right to receive quality education has increased … Traditionally learning achievements have been valued as one of the most reliable indicators of educational progress, due to the concordance between this quality indicator and the economic and political dynamics based on accountability … concording with this approach, in our country it has been tried to evaluate the educational quality using standardized tests, at least in its first part,From the International Student Evaluation Program (PISA, Program for International Student Assessment) an OECD project, developed between 1997 and 1999, which is applied every three years.
It is proposed that the test is designed to know three competencies, reader, mathematics and scientific, in addition to the skills, expertise and aptitudes of students to analyze and solve problems, manage information and face situations of adult life that will require those thoseskills. However, on the OECD page where reference is made to the 2015 PISA survey that was applied in 72 countries, on competitions in science, reading, mathematics and problem solving collaboratively, it is pointed out that ‘… Singapore obtains better betterResults that the rest of the countries of the world in the last PISA survey of the OECD, in which the quality, equity and efficiency of educational systems are evaluated … ‘, which shows the extrapolation made ofthe results.