TEQSA leads APEC workshop on online education

November 21, 2016


In early November the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA),  Australia’s national quality assurance and regulatory agency for higher education, shared its experience in quality assuring online education at a workshop in Indonesia, with fellow Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economies including Vietnam, China and Mexico.

The workshop was hosted by the Australian Government Department of Education and Training and funded through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

For TEQSA CEO Anthony McClaran, one of the highlights of the workshop was the opportunity to collaborate with like-minded education professionals who agreed on the principles quality assuring online education.

“Helping economies to get the quality assurance settings right for higher education and online learning in particular builds confidence in national and regional education networks and promotes student mobility,” Mr McClaran said.

He said “TEQSA’s principles and standards approach to quality assurance in Australia’s diverse higher education sector is unique and the TEQSA model for regulation has processes for protecting and assuring quality in online learning. Australia’s experience illustrates progress on the continuum of online learning models and methods and how it can be integrated into existing quality assurance frameworks. As economies in APEC, we can all learn from each other’s experience.”

TEQSA’s toolkit, which is intended for adaption and use by institutions and regulatory agencies in the APEC region and beyond  was well received.

“While many students now study ‘online only’ courses, the most common form of online education is blended learning (also called hybrid or mixed) where students engage in a mix of face-to-face activities but also access online resources or participate in online testing.”

APEC is a forum for 21 Pacific Rim member economies that promotes free trade throughout the Asia-Pacific region.