19 November 2015 | EQAF Paper

Challenges and barriers to assessing and recognising excellence in (professional) higher education

Alexandre Wipf, Carol Hall, Linda Messas, Lars Ebert, Regitze Sparre Kristensen


After 10 years of intensive developments in European quality assurance and in the year of the adoption of the revised European Standards and Guidelines (ESG) this paper will ask whether excellence is the way forward and how to address excellence in (professional) higher education.

We will present the experience gathered in pilot assessments of excellence in institutions offering professional higher education and explore approaches to recognising their claim for excellence. We will examine the genesis of the tested quality framework for excellence and assessment methodology. We will reflect on the successes and challenges of the pilots and outline the possible way forward to recognise excellence.
The paper is built on the activities of the PHExcel project (Testing the feasibility of a quality label for professional higher education excellence) by EURASHE, AEC, ELIA, SPACE, The University of Nottingham with FINE, Jagiellonian University and KIC-Malta.


This paper was presented at EQAF and reflects the views of the named authors only.

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