Beyond SERVQUAL: The competitive forces of higher education in Singapore

Roland K. Yeo, Jessica Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The paper explores the influences of service quality in higher education and how they contribute to the overall performance of a higher learning institution in Singapore. It draws on the underpinnings of SERVQUAL, and discusses the dichotomy and interrelation between customer perception and expectation in response to current tertiary contexts. Based on an actual framework of a Singapore higher learning institution, the paper further examines three key aspects of service standards: customer orientation, course design/delivery, and support services. Qualitative methodology was employed and data were collected by means of structured in-depth interviews with 12 academics of the institution. Our findings reveal that the way students are perceived will have a direct influence on the learning dynamics that occur both inside and outside the classroom. More importantly, service quality needs to be evaluated on the basis of the integrated experience of students supported by a network of learning spaces created to promote dialogue, inquiry, and reflection. At the core is the collective effort of all individuals that function as active carriers of change.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)95-123
Number of pages29
JournalTotal Quality Management and Business Excellence
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Dec 2013


  • course delivery
  • customer satisfaction
  • higher education
  • service quality
  • Singapore
  • support services

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)


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