Colleges facing pressures to increase student outcomes while reducing costs have shown an increasing interest in competency-based education (CBE) models. Regional accreditors created a joint policy on CBE evaluation. Two years later, through this grounded theory study, I sought to understand from experts the nature of this policy, its impact, and the possible need for it to be revised. Findings indicate that the Council of Regional Accrediting Commission’s (C-RAC) Framework was helpful as an educational tool but was also a product of its time and may need to be updated. Analysis of survey responses, a focus group discussion, and semi-structured interviews revealed themes centering around a) the value of the Framework, b) its alignment with accreditors and changing times, and c) the need for its revision. A grounded theory of a narrative lifecycle for the Framework details a progression through six stages that is driven by predictable narrative features. Implications of a narrative policy lifecycle view of the Framework underscore the need for revision of the Framework, and the potential usefulness of applying a narrative paradigm to other higher education accreditation work.
|Advisor:||Catanzaro, James L.|
|Commitee:||Wheelan, Belle S.|
|School:||National American University|
|Department:||Community College Leadership Program|
|School Location:||United States -- South Dakota|
|Source:||DAI-A 79/02(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Higher Education Administration, Education Policy, Public policy|
|Keywords:||Accreditation, Adaptive learning, Competency based education, Higher education, Policy life-cycle, Regional accreditation|
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