An Assessment of the Role of Regional Members of Staff in the ZOU National Strategic Plan as a Tool for Quality Assurance at the Zimbabwe Open University

Barbara Mbuyisa, Emmanuel Dumbu


The study sought to assess the quality systems in higher education through evaluating the role played by regional staff members in the ZOU national strategic plan. The main purpose of the study is to establish how best regional staff members could contribute to the ZOU national strategic plan with an emphasis on quality and to establish whether ZOU mission statement, objectives and goals are linked in the production of good quality of education.

The study was carried out in Bulawayo. The population comprised of forty six academic and non academic staff from Bulawayo region and nine hundred and twenty five students as at June 2011 of which a ten percent sample was conveniently selected from the population. Document analysis, interviews and questionnaires were used to collect data under the themes, strategic management as a tool for quality assurance at ZOU.

The study revealed that whilst staff members had an input in the strategy formulation, there was concern on the strategic monitoring which members felt lacked progress feedback; timeous communication and environment strategic fit in order ensure that there is continuous improvement in the quality of education. (Kaizen) The study recommended that regional staff members be educated on the agreed targets for precision in strategic execution and on quality assurance in higher education. The study also recommended that there be continuous two way feedback between the regions and the national centre on the progress and challenges encountered for the purposes of re-strategizing if need be. Finally it was recommended that resources be availed in order to continuously encourage quality awareness to all staff.

Keywords: Stakeholders, strategic plan and quality assurance.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-607X ISSN (Online)2225-0565

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