The impact of new public management and external quality assurance systems on education: A Foucauldian analysis.

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Authors
French, P.
Issue Date
2001
Type
Working Papers
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Quality assurance , Foucault , Public management , Power and knowledge , Control surveillance , Educators
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Abstract
This paper examines the key underpinning ideologies controlling competition in tertiary education in New Zealand since the Education Act 1989. Specifically, these ideologies are considered in terms of the impact of managerialism and quality assurance systems, which are critiqued against Foucault's concepts of power/knowledge control and surveillance. The impact of the competitive environment on education is important to evaluate. It is often presented in terms of better choice for students, a more student-focused system, transparent learning outcomes, or in terms of the financial costs involved, such as increased spending on advertising or the development of transparent quality assurance systems. This paper seeks to raise the awareness of educators to the principles underpinning the competitive environment in order to provide tools to debate improvements or alternatives. Understanding the framework for the changes identifies why it sometimes seems impossible to argue against their logic. While the paper considers specific policy developments, such as quality assurance, it does so in order to focus on the impact of these issues on educators and on concepts such as collegiality and professionalism.
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French, P. (2001). The impact of new public management and external quality assurance systems on education: A Foucauldian analysis (Working Papers No. 5-01). Lower Hutt, New Zealand: The Open Polytechnic of New Zealand.
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