This paper points out the problem of the plural external evaluation system for Japanese universities. Japanese evaluation system is internationally the peculiar case that both of chartering in government and accreditation in government and non-government agencies exist in parallel. It is the biggest problem that the accreditation agencies secure both the autonomy and quality control and the appropriate cooperation with chartering goes well. This paper also reviews, as the experience in the world and Japan, the activity in the INQAAHE and the JUAA 2003 Version, which aims at the quality assurance of internationally viable higher education and foresees the new accreditation system recognized by government after 2004. From these experiences, it is prospected to develop the plural external evaluation system in future.
A plural evaluation system is established for higher education. In education institutions such as university, junior college and college of technology, some of personnel are feeling that they have great burden on plural evaluations including the self-monitoring, the self-evaluation, the outside third party verification on self-evaluation and the third party evaluation. I try to show the reason why they feel so. I point out several anxieties as follows : 1. They like to show more than what they have done. 2. They like to show more facts than what are needed. 3. Evidences are put out of order. 4. They have no inside system to prepare for plural evaluations.
The achievement of objectives of Japan Accreditation Board for Engineering Education (JABEE) is evaluated and facing problems, including further development of the accreditation system are discussed. The objectives of JABEE, such as evaluating and accrediting engineering programs through fair examination based on the criteria and public announcement of the accredited programs, development of evaluation methods and fostering of evaluators, and contribution to the improvement of educational quality seem to have been being rather well achieved, while objective third-party evaluation is necessary. On the other hand, there are concerns such as standardization of education, uncertain effects of the accreditation, unclear evaluation methods, frequent change in the criteria or the guideline, and request for accreditation of Master Course program. The author states his personal views on these issues including responses of JABEE.
JABEE requires the ability of continuing study as one of outcomes of engineering education. Necessity of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for engineers is understandable through engineering ethics or responsibility to the society. Personal opinion on the roles of industries and engineering societies for CPD of engineers is described and also personal requests to educational institutes, industries and engineers are described to better JABEE and engineering education.
A goal of the JABEE accreditation system is to ensure that engineering education at higher education institutes in Japan develops students who are knowledgeable in engineering, capable of applying engineering knowledge, and able to implement practical engineering solution in society after graduation. Unfortunately, the industrial world has not yet sufficiently recognized the important role of JABEE in achieving this goal. The interest and participation of industry in engineering education is absolutely needed to ensure the development of the ability to apply engineering in society. This article states the issues, reviewed from the standpoint of industries, in the current situation of JABEE accreditation system activities.
The number of universities in Japan has increased to 709 schools by 2004, and it is expected that whoever wants to enter a university will be able to do so more easily from the 2007 academic year. A drawback of this situation, however, is the deterioration of the overall quality of incoming students. This development has been observed in engineering schools as well, unfortunately. In the 2004 academic year, undergraduate student enrollment surpassed 110,000. Meanwhile, Japanese corporations continue with their in-house career development training for new and current employees in order to strengthen corporate competitiveness and as a buffer or counter to the degradation of the quality of graduates. A notable feature of engineering schools is the diversification of departments. As almost half of graduate school courses were newly established, traditional engineering disciplines are in danger of collapsing. How engineering education should be revamped to meet with this crisis will be discussed in this paper.
We are facing the rapid changes in business environment : the rapid advancement of science and technology, and globalization. In this situation, the key issue in a highly industrialized country, Japan, is to educate a large number of globally competent engineers and assure the globally competent qualification of Professional Engineering. This paper introduces our case studies of engineering Education and CPD based on our experience of administering Engineering Education services from planning to delivering courses. (CPD : Continuing Professional Development) In addition, we also describe about the quality assurance of the guarantees accreditation by JABEE and about the Professional Engineer qualification acknowledged internationally by APEC Engineering.
JABEE in Japanese engineering education is discussed by focusing on the status and treatment of engineers in Japanese society and their achievements. The entrance fee and tuition of the engineering departments of higher education facilities are higher than those of the law, economy and literature departments. On the other hand, an engineer's lifelong wage is smaller than that of those who have graduated from the latter fields. Although engineering students must study for a longer period of time, the scholarship system to support these students in Japan falls far behind that in the U.S.A. The achievements of Japanese engineering were summarized from the viewpoint of economic indications such as 1) production of steel, 2) energy consumption per person as a function of GDP, 3) income 4) real estate abroad and miscellaneous factors such as the life spans and criminal rates of many countries. These analyses made it clear that Japanese engineers have the highest ability even compared to advanced countries and this is because of the higher engineering education in Japan ; but their status is unreasonably low in Japanese society. The four points by which the present status of Japanese engineers can be improved were discussed in relation to the introduction and the achievement of the JABEE system. The true aim of education reform by JABEE is that the engineering education in Japan should shift “from government to non-government”, “from organization to individual” and “from control to interdependency.” The expected points of improvement are discussed.
First, a few problems about the present status of JABEE (Japan Accreditation Board for Engineering Education) are noticed. Second, developments of the engineering education in the Meiji era are briefly reviewed. Third, differences of the surroundings around Japanese industries and society between Meiji and the present are shortly commented. Lastly, expectations on the future activities of JABEE are derived.
The Kogakuin University has been making efforts on improving the educational program of the Department of the Basic Engineering in Global Environment (BEIGE) first evaluated by JABEE on trial basis in 2000. The department was accredited in 2001 but the interim examination was requested and carried out in 2003. Both the examination team and the university had no experience in the accreditation process, which was thus performed on a trial and error basis. The Departments of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanical Systems Engineering then followed BEIGE for the JABEE's accreditation in 2004. Despite the immense burden to and efforts of the faculty members required for the examination, the students have hardly any benefits through this accreditation. Some immediate measures in that respect are to be considered.
Educational improvement at the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering started in 1996 and the educational system with the spiral improvement has been constructed. Main items for the educational improvement are as follows : (1) reform of the curriculum, (2) evaluation by students, (3) open lecture for brush-up teaching, (4) construction of network among teachers, (5) establishment of committees for educational reform. As a result, a ratio of the students graduating from our department for four years since their admission, increased from 66% to 78%. Besides, the consciousness of teachers for education has been improved, and in May 2004 our department was authorized by the JABEE (Japan Accreditation Board for Engineering Education).
The aim of accrediting ‘the education program for engineers’ by JABEE is to improve the quality of education and to guarantee its quality based on international standards. While the JABEE accreditation system works in Japan, it is necessary to verify the effect of accreditation and its social evaluation. More concretely it is to see if the abilities of students were raised in an improvement of education or not. In this paper, it is shown how the Colleges worked with the program for accreditation and what results were obtained, particularly focusing on the case of Tokuyama College of Technology. Also, some factors for acquiring accreditation are considered.
Recently the true liberal education is uncommon in Japanese universities. Though there are liberal arts and science as the subjects. But the students want to attend to the lectures of the true liberal education by excellent professors in the small groups on such as on virtue and vice, on beautiful things, on great persons in the history and on what is the meaning to be in the world. But strange to say the true liberal educations are, though the cases are rare, in the private universities whose entrance exams are comparatively easy.