Over the last 19 years, the higher education sector has registered exponential growth with the country now boasting of dozens of both private and public universities to quench the ever growing thirst for education.
Consequently, however, issues of quality come to the fore, hence, the need for a mechanism to ensure relevant checks and balances. One of this is eternal examining, which is highly credited with ensuring quality assurance of standards in a world of profound and continuous change.
The practice is yet to be systematised in Rwanda and is perhaps one of the missing elements in ensuring that our education system is complete and at par with the best in the world. For this reason, Thursday’s call by Education Minister Dr Vincent Biruta for peer review mechanisms and introduction of external examiners could not have come at a better time.
External examining is much valued and would go a long way in ensuring quality education in the country. It ensures that students are treated fairly while lecturers are able to understand their standards better, besides enabling institutions to improve the quality of the education, which they provide.
Due to the fact that the government acknowledges the need to introduce the mechanism in our universities, it ought to make it mandatory for all institutions of higher learning.
However, it should shore up its development and roll-out of necessary infrastructure due to the financial outlay involved that may be out of reach for most of the said institutions.
Ultimately, external examiners would act as the guardians of the reputation and quality of higher education as the country carries on with her journey to become a knowledge-based economy.