Friday, December 03, 2010

Total quantity control

"Total quantity control"(總量管制)usually refers to any measure taken to ensure something done satisfactorily in quality. For example, Taipei City Government needs to limit the number of taxies and taxi drivers in the name of total quantity control; otherwise, allowing the unlimited growth of taxies and taxi drivers only leads to chaotic traffic and less chance for drivers to pick up passengers. However, total quantity control, if administered excessively, would become a roadblock for progress. And it is now very unfortunately being done to our school.

Based on cost consideration, our school has a strict policy regulating the total credit hours that each department can have; subsequently, it means the total number of courses, required and elective, is therefore limited. The implementation of such policy has done more harm than good to teaching and learning quality.

The writing and translation classes of evening or weekend sections are taught in larger class, forty or more students each, instead of smaller class under twenty-five students like that of daytime section. The teaching quality of large classes is certainly inferior to that of smaller ones.

This policy also results in the fact that students of evening or weekend sections have fewer choices of their elective courses.

Is allowing each department to give more electives so hard to do? Not quite. If any class of summer session is allowed to open when it has ten students to sign up for it, then it means, according to the calculation of the accounting office, the tuition fee paid by these ten would cover up the cost for opening a class. Why are twenty students needed to open an elective class during regular school semester?

If a department can’t give more electives for students to take, any talk about progress, or educational ideal is futile. “Total quantity control” is canceling out our efforts to give and students’ chance to receive quality education.

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