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Perceptions and evaluation of teaching in higher education in Vietnam: a case study


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Tran, ND 2012 , 'Perceptions and evaluation of teaching in higher education in Vietnam: a case study', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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This thesis is a time-fixed snapshot of how teaching is perceived and
evaluated in Higher Education in Vietnam. The interest in exploring this question lies
in its implications for improving teaching through teaching evaluation practice.
Although the thesis is not directed to the teaching evaluation system per se,
understanding the perceptions of teaching underlying the system is a prerequisite to
teaching improvement.
This case study was conducted at a public and a non-public university in
Vietnam. Five university administrators – the designers of the Student Evaluation of
Teaching (SET) instrument, and one hundred teachers participated in this study. Data
were obtained through semi-structured interviews, survey-questionnaire, and analysis
of documents including institutional SET Forms and Guideline on SETs from the
Ministry of Education and Training, Vietnam.
Findings show that in Vietnam tertiary teaching was generally perceived as
focusing on the teachers and their teaching, in a “linked-chain” fashion, from
MOET’s policy framework to university administrators, and to teachers. Two
approaches to teaching evaluation, that is, student presage-focused, and teaching
context-focused were found in this study. These approaches are characterised by
congruence of the perception of teaching held by the university administrators, with
the focus of teaching evaluation, and the purpose of the evaluation.
The research presented in this thesis makes a considerable contribution to the
literature. First, it argues for an approach to teaching evaluation underpinned by
student-centred perceptions of teaching, that is, teaching as facilitating critical
thinking and as enabling conceptual change. The teaching evaluation instrument used
for such an approach becomes student evaluation of learning. Second, it extends the understanding of administrators’ perceptions of teaching, which were under researched,
compared with the prevalent literature on teachers’ perceptions of
teaching. Third, the study gives prominence to administrators and teachers in the
Higher Education (HE) system of a developing country whose views were much less
researched than those of developed countries. Finally, the study adds to the present
lack of literature on the HE in Vietnam and provides a systemic view of the HE
system through the lens of the perceptions of teaching which lie behind the teaching
evaluation system. By doing so, it contributes to explanation of the Vietnamese
Government’s failures in its attempts at quality improvement in HE.

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Tran, ND
Keywords: perceptions of teaching, Vietnam, university
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