EURASHE – Association of Institutions in Higher Education
Who are we?
EURASHE is the European Association of Institutions in Higher Education that offer professionally orientated programmes and are engaged in applied and profession-related research within the Bologna cycles. EURASHE represents universities of applied sciences and university colleges; other members of EURASHE are national and sectorial associations of higher education institutions, and other individual institutions, such as universities. EURASHE members operate within and across different national systems whether these are unitary or binary, professional and/or academic. EURASHE was founded in Patras (Greece) in 1990. It has the status of an international non-profit association according to Belgian law (aisbl) and its Secretariat is located in Brussels (Belgium).
EURASHE’s mission is to strengthen the impact of innovative, high quality professional higher education and related user-oriented research in Europe by representing professional higher education institutions and facilitating their multi-stakeholder cooperation and dialogue. In addition to offering professionally-orientated programmes, EURASHE members are specifically engaged in applied and profession-related research, and its technological applications. EURASHE focuses primarily on policy development and on higher education projects and research with emphasis on its professionally-orientated segments. Furthermore, it organises annual conferences, thematic seminars and tailor-made events for its members.
Why we are Participating in the Project
EURASHE together with many of the partners of QALead have been working on implementing quality criteria within Higher VET and Professional Higher Education as the part of BuildPHE, PHExcel and HAPHE projects during the last few years. These projects have produced a detailed set of standards and usage guidelines, which have been piloted by 15 institutions across Europe. However, despite a successful pilot involving improvement plans submitted by 15 institutions, and positive feedback from all institutions involved, the projects have yet to promote whole-scale organizational transformation oriented around commonly agreed quality goals.
In analysing this phenomenon in participating institutions, a lack of formalised expertise in quality management amongst institutional top management as a key barrier limiting uptake was identified. Often institutional leaders will have never received any formal training in QA-management,
and thus, while having significant expertise as to what constitutes quality education, will have limited expertise in how to translate that mission and vision into a management system based on clear quality objectives, backed up by steady processes that will assure the adequate planning and realization of activities leading to the achievement of those objectives, as well as monitoring and analysing processes that will enable continual improvement.
EURASHE will be involved significantly in dissemination and impact project activities. In particular, EURASHE will give the project a platform at its conferences, disseminate results to its network of over 1200 universities of applied science and university colleges, as well as bring the results of the project forward to European policy makers particularly within the Bologna Process and the ET2020 working groups.
Our Role in the Project
Our role is:
- To contribute for the QA-Lead partners by contacting institutional leaders of HVET/PHE from across Europe, while each of the national associations will ensure significant participation from each of their countries, with the aim of comparing the responses from the project-countries with the European average.
- To participate in the Activity C1 (10 EURASHE’s members Institutional leaders will take part).
- To promote project outputs at the EURASHE annual conferences.
- To organise a multiplier event E5 Workshop on QA Competence for Institutional Leaders.
- To disseminate the progress of QA-Lead on international level.