The development of a ‘quality culture’ to underpin a successful quality system requires:
- an open and active commitment to quality at all levels;
- a willingness to engage in self-evaluation;
- a firm regulatory framework; clarity and consistency of procedures;
- explicit responsibilities for quality control and quality assurance;
- an emphasis on obtaining feedback, from a range of constituencies;
- a clear commitment to identifying and disseminating good practice;
- prompt, appropriate, and sensitive managerial action to redress problems, supported by adequate information (HEQC, 1994).
The issue of quality and quality management in Vocational education and training (VET) constitutes one of the major fields of development in the European Union while many resources have been devoted to increase the quality of VET.
Despite all the efforts, experience shows that it is difficult for VET organizations to translate evaluation results into improvement initiatives. The available Quality Assurance (QA) guides and kits are based on a fairly traditional model which focuses on “evaluation” rather than engaging the teaching staff on incorporating ideas into practice. Available research (CEDEFOP) shows that one of the main barriers is the view about quality initiatives of not only an organisation’s leadership but also of the teaching staff.