The students’ viewpoint on the quality gap in educational services



Introduction: Students and universi

ty community are social and human
resources of the country. The students’ viewpoints about the quality of
educational services can be considered as a basis for planning quality promotion and improving organizational performance. This study was conducted to determine the quality gap in educational services d by the students of Health and Nutrition School of Shiraz University of Medical Sciences.
Methods: In this cross-sectional study, 140 students participated voluntarily
(age range=19 to 40 years). The service quality (SERVQUAL) questionnaire
was used for data collection. This questionnaire measured the quality gap
in 5 dimensions of educational service including assurance, responsiveness,
empathy, reliability, and tangibility. The students’ perception about the current conditions and their expectations as to optimal conditions can be determined, using this questionnaire. The score of the gap in quality of educational services is calculated from difference between perception and expectation scores. Due to non-normality of data, non-parametric tests were used. To this end, data were analyzed using statistical tests including Wilcoxon, Friedman, Kruskal-Wallis and Mann-Whiteny tests in SPSS 14.
Results: The results showed that there was quality gap in all 5 dimensions
of educational services. The largest and the smallest gaps were observed in
"responsiveness" with a mean±SD of -0.94±0.74 and in "reliability" with a
mean±SD of -0.76±0.69, respectively. There was a significant difference in
quality gap between the 5 dimensions (p<0.001).
Discussion: According to the results, the students’ expectations were higher
than their perceptions of current conditions; also, in all aspects of the
services their expectations were not met. It is recommended that workshops
on customer services, communication skills and personnel’s technical skills
development should be planned and held. Also, allocating more resources for improving educational facilities and physical environment is recommended.

Keywords: Quality, Gap, Education, Questionnaire, Student

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 P ISSN: 2322-2220            E ISSN:2322-3561      

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