The Program for Research on Private Higher Education
Dedicated to Building Knowledge about Private Higher Education around the World
WP No.20

Quality Assurance In Private Higher Education: The Case Of Ghana


Tsevi, Linda (2015).  "Quality Assurance In Private Higher Education: The Case Of Ghana." PROPHE Working Paper No.20.


This paper explores the implementation of quality assurance procedures for private higher education (PHE) in the West African country of Ghana. Focusing on the three main isomorphic classifications (coercive, mimetic and normative) of DiMaggio and Powell’s (1983) institutional theory, the paper examines how regulatory measures are not only designed to enhance the quality of private higher education institutions (PHEIs), but also how they impact the efforts employed by private providers to meet quality assurance standards. Participants from five private university colleges and two private chartered institutions constitute the sample. In addition, documents from the websites of the sampled PHEIs are coded using NVivo 10 to determine the kind of efforts institutions make to convey the message of legitimacy across to students and other clientele. Additional participants are officials from the National Accreditation Board, higher education specialists and retired faculty of Ghana’s public higher education institutions.

In general, open-ended interviews with selected participants and analysis of documents show evidence of private institutions’ efforts to meet their quality assurance requirements through mimetic, coercive and normative isomorphism. These efforts appear respectively in institutional affiliations, conformity to mentoring (supervising) institutions’ programs, and efforts to meet quality assurance requirements and measures established by the National Accreditation Board.

Date Published:
Nov 2015
Linda Tsevi