A fuzzy ServQual based method for reliable measurements of education quality in Italian higher education area

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Abstract

In recent years, the attention that the European Community has focused on the education sector has produced a new university commitment addressed to quality aspects for all education related services. In fact, a quality oriented service requires excellence in the design and planning of service activities, as well as during its delivering and also for the adopted service performance evaluation method. However, considering that service performance evaluations are deeply based on stakeholders’ judgments, they can be characterized by possible uncertainties related to incompleteness for partial ignorance, imprecision for subjectivity and even vagueness. Therefore, under these conditions, unreliable results can be obtained by widely considered service analysis methods. In the present paper, a method based on a recent extension of the ServQual model and that uses in combined manner the Fuzzy Set Theory and the Analytic Hierarchy Process method is proposed to effectively handle uncertainty in service performance analyses. In particular, the Fuzzy Set Theory is considered to deal with such uncertainty, whereas the AHP method is adopted as tool to estimate the importance weights of the strategic service attributes. Subsequently, the strategic analysis of the service value tree related to the Management Engineering program at the University of Palermo (Italy) is performed by using the proposed method. The performed service analysis allows the most influencing service performance factors to be captured and commented upon. Finally, the obtained results show that the professors’ perception of service quality meaningfully influences the overall service performance level
Lingua originaleEnglish
Numero di pagine15
RivistaExpert Systems with Applications
Volume40
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2013

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Engineering(all)
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Artificial Intelligence

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