KIGALI - The Executive Director of the Higher Education Council (HEC), Prof Geoffrey Rugege, has said that the council has set up a system to assess the performance of lecturers in the country to ascertain whether they are imparting quality education.
According to Rugege, the evaluation exercise is being conducted by rectors of these institutions.
“It would be difficult for us to visit and assess all institutions of higher learning, which is why we are using their rectors to verify whether they work well,” Rugege said in a telephone interview.
He, however, added they don’t entirely rely on rectors’ reports, saying that the council has made an institutional audit mechanism whereby a team of about four rectors or lecturers go to inspect the quality of education in a given institution.
“We send a team from several institutions to inspect, and when they find the institution doesn’t employ 70% lecturers with master’s degrees, we propose that the institution be suspended,” asserted Rugege, adding that so far, one institute that did not comply was shut town.
He could not however disclose the institution that was closed down, but added students from this institution have since been integrated into other schools.
Other benchmarks that are used in the evaluation exercise include the living condition of the students.
“A room must have two beds accommodating two students only… it becomes a problem when six or eight students share the same room. This inevitably affects the performance of the students,” he said.
Reacting to the challenges associated to the adoption of new modular teaching system in universities, Rugege said that it is inevitable to use the new system since it ensures better results.
“They (lecturers) say they don’t wish to change their traditional teaching system, but we try to encourage them to adapt, since this is the same system that is used even in developed countries,” he explained.
He added the ministry has embarked on a training programme that has already benefitted some lecturers in the country, who were trained on the modular system by some German consultants in May this year.
“We are planning to invite some other consultants in less than six months to train more lecturers.
The modular system allows a component of several teachers delivering several sections of the same module which helps in quality assurance due to the more detailed nature of the subjects.