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Benchmarking in Higher Education: Adapting Best Practices to Improve Quality (J-B ASHE Higher Education Report Series (AEHE))

By Jeffrey W. Alstete
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Book Details
  • Author: Jeffrey W. Alstete
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Publisher: Brand: The George Washington University
  • Published: 1996-05-30
  • Edition: 1
This report concerns the use of benchmarking as a strategy for assessing and improving efficiency and productivity of administrative processes and instructional models in colleges and universities. The introductory chapter addresses the need for new tools and strategies to meet the increased competition and the higher demand for accountability faced by institutions of higher education and the development of benchmarking by the Xerox Corporation in the 1980s. The second chapter presents various definitions of benchmarking, an ongoing, systematic process for measuring and comparing the work processes of different organizations by bringing an external focus to internal activities and functions. An overview of benchmarking identifies a four-step benchmarking process model that includes (1) planning the study, (2) conducting the research, (3) analyzing the data, and (4) adapting the findings to the home institution. Four kinds of benchmarking are identified and discussed: internal, competitive, functional/industry, and generic. The third chapter reviews the current uses of benchmarking in higher education, as undertaken by such organizations as the National Association of College and University Business Offices; the Association for Continuing Higher Education, the Graduate Management Admission Council/Educational Benchmarking, Inc., and independent institutions. The final chapter gives detailed recommendations and outlines a procedure for institutions interested in undertaking a benchmarking study. (Contains approximately 115 references.) (PRW).

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