ABSTRACT Over the last three decades, higher education institutions have found themselves using vernacular that was once chiefly found in business disciplines, such as value‐added and competitive advantage. With the rising costs of tuition, newer‐generation students are seeing themselves more and more as customers and universities are beginning to adopt customer‐centric strategies and missions. However, even with this paradigm shift, little research has been done to extend traditional service management concepts to educational settings. This research attempts to bridge this gap by applying the SERVQUAL scale, a well‐validated and widely used service operations construct, to the classroom environment. The findings show that the SERVQUAL scale exhibits both reliability and convergent and divergent validity; in fact, in these regards, it outperforms traditional student assessment scales. Moreover, the scale can explain significant amounts of variances in student‐related outcome variables such as satisfaction and learning. This innovative approach to measuring classroom service quality does indeed show that students can be viewed as customers and has far‐reaching implications to all stakeholders in the delivery of higher education.
Decision Sciences Journal of Innovative Education – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 2008
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