A project entails setting up structures and activities in co-operation with other projects for the attainment of a goal that may be either a general aim or a long-term objective. Each project will have its own operational objectives. Furthermore, a quality project will be talked about when the idea of improving the service offered to a client is its main aim.
Often people have ideas for projects, perhaps inspired by the example of others, but no clear objectives. In that case one needs to define realistic aims in terms of:
the resources available,
the underlying rationale,
the client group to be targeted.
Although the success of a quality project does depend on the precision with which its aims are specified, it remains true that good quality may be found at all levels of organisation or provision. It is thus difficult to try to mark out the areas in which quality may be manifested if it is thought that everything outside that zone is not part of quality challenges.
If a project is to be set up successfully, definition is needed according to both a schedule (time) and to an institutional context (space).
What we are concerned with here is a quality project in the field of adult and continuing education. The ability to manage a quality management project should not be confused with the ability to teach adults. If it is to succeed in practice there must be clear boundaries of schedule and integration. There is a distinction made, therefore, between the organisational side, such as planning and finding resources for the project, and the educational side properly so-called.
Given that the objectives will determine the work to be undertaken and establish evaluation criteria, this stage of development needs to be systematically analysed. It involves assessing the relevance of the project in relation to its setting and to its declared aims. It is also useful to match the objectives up against the long-term aims of the quality project from time to time during its duration, in order to ensure overall coherence.