Rethinking Quality Assurance for Higher Education in Brazil

This review examines the external systems in place to assure the quality of higher education in Brazil. It highlights the relative success of the Brazilian quality assurance model in regulating market entry for private operators in Brazil, which cater to over 70% of students. But it also calls into question the effectiveness of existing systems to monitor the quality of undergraduate programmes and institutions and the ability of public authorities to act decisively to protect students from bad quality education. The report analyses the systems that regulate the launch of new higher education institutions and programmes and evaluates quality assessment mechanisms for existing programmes and institutions. It also looks at the structures allowing public authorities to intervene to end or improve poor quality provision. The review offers policy recommendations. It proposes a more differentiated system of quality assurance. It also recommends significant modifications to the design and purpose of the National Examination of Student Performance (ENADE). This work was requested by the National Commission for Evaluation of Higher Education (CONAES) and CAPES, the federal body responsible for quality assurance and funding of postgraduate education.

Published on December 21, 2018

In series:Reviews of National Policies for Educationview more titles


Abbreviations and Acronyms
Executive Summary
Assessment and recommendations
Scope of the review and analytical framework
Higher education in Brazil
Market entry: New institutions and undergraduate programmes
Assuring and promoting quality for existing undergraduate programmes
Assuring the quality of postgraduate education
Assuring the quality of higher education institutions
Governance of external quality assurance
Annexes2 chapters available
Review team
Schedule for the review team's mission to Brazil
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