EHEA Website Archive

Work programme 2009-2012

Working Group on Transparency Tools 2009-2012

The purpose of the working group is to monitor and analyse the development of the transparency tools and mechanisms, both the purposes and the objectives (information, accountability, quality) and the indicators and criteria used (input/processes, output/outcome) and to make a report to the 2012 ministerial conference.

Archived content for Bologna Experts - 26/04/2012
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Updates to BFUG

BFUG Meeting 21 Alden Biesen 24-25 August 2010

BFUG Meeting 24 Gödöllő 17-18 March 2011

BFUG Meeting 26 Cracow 13-14 October 2011

BFUG Meeting 30 Copenhagen 19-20 March 2012



Research article

Frans van Vught and Don F. Westerheijden  (2010), "Multidimensional ranking: a new transparency tool for higher education and research", Higher Education Management and Policy, Vol. 22/3.

This paper sets out to analyse the need for better "transparency tools" which inform university stakeholders about the quality of universities. First, we give an overview of what we understand by the concept of transparency tools and those that are currently available. We then critique current transparency tools’ methodologies, looking in detail at the question of data sources, the risks involved in constructing league tables and the challenges in using composite indicators. Lastly, we argue in favour of developing a new principle for transparency tools: that of multidimensional ranking.


U-Multirank is an independent ranking prepared with seed funding from the European Commission’s Erasmus+ programme.
U-Multirank is developed and implemented on the initiative of the European Commission by an independent consortium led by the Centre for Higher Education (CHE) in Germany, the Center for Higher Education Policy Studies (CHEPS) at the University of Twente and the Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) from Leiden University, both in the Netherlands.

U-Multirank is a new multidimensional, user-driven approach to international ranking of higher education institutions. It compares the performances of higher education institutions – in short: universities – in the five broad dimensions of university activity: (1) teaching and learning, (2) research, (3) knowledge transfer, (4) international orientation and (5) regional engagement. The U-Multirank web tool enables comparisons at the level of the university as a whole and at the level of specific fields of study. Based on empirical data U-Multirank compares institutions with similar institutional profiles (‘like-with-like’) and allows users to develop their own personalised rankings by selecting indicators in terms of their own preferences.

Official U-Multirank website

Read more on the stakeholders consultation and the design and testing phases of the projet

Benchmarking in European Higher Education

Benchmarking in European Higher Education - August 2008

This report describes the results of a two-year eu-funded project, Bench- marking in higher education, which investigated the concepts and practices of benchmarking in higher education.
The project had four partner organisations: the european centre for strategic management of universities (esmu), centre for higher education develop- ment (che), the unesco european centre for higher education (unesco- cepes) and the university of aveiro, which carried out extensive desk and bibliographical research into benchmarking concepts and practices. the partners designed a typology to characterize collaborative benchmarking groups in higher education and carried out interviews with these groups. this resulted in this “report on project findings”, an online tool on benchmarking in higher education and guidelines for effective benchmarking.

European University Data Collection

This document overviews the Feasibility Study for Creating a European University Data Collection and its context, objectives, methodology, results and reasoned conclusions – including an outline of the proposed statistical infrastructure.

EUMIDA Study - final study report

Collegiate learning assessment

The Collegiate Learning Assessment measures "the skills that you want every undergraduate to walk away with," says Pedro Reyes, associate vice chancellor for academic planning and assessment at the U. of Texas.

Collegiate Learning Assessment, by Wyatt McSpadden for the Chronicle

Collegiate Learning Assessment - Accountability and Comparability, by Joan Hawthorne

Published: 26/04/2012 - Last modified: 06/09/2016
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