ENQA organised, within the framework of the BFUG work programme, a Bologna seminar on transnational education (TNE) and the OECD-UNESCO Guidelines for quality provision in cross-border higher education. The seminar was hosted by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA), UK.
Background and Objectives
The way in which the quality of transnational higher education (TNE) is assured underpins the credibility and acceptability of schemes to promote the mobility of learning across national borders, and the international recognition of qualifications. The OECD-UNESCO guidelines for quality provision in cross border higher education, which are compatible with the European Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance (ESG), provide an authoritative approach to the quality assurance of TNE across the world. They have been widely circulated and discussed – especially in the quality assurance community – and are likely to become a key reference document as TNE spreads in response to international demand.
As part of its Global Strategy, the Bologna Process will need to integrate the sharing of information and promotion of good practice in TNE, among both its own members and its wider international partners.
The seminar provided an excellent platform for European actors to discuss and share new information about the OECD/UNESCO Guidelines with representatives of other regions, with a view to achieving a consensus of purpose and method, thereby helping to create mutual confidence among quality assurance and accreditation agencies and other key stakeholder groups.
The seminar discussed, among others, the current trends in TNE landscapes, the influence of the OECD/UNESCO Guidelines on the development of regulatory frameworks at institutional, national and international levels, the impact of the Guidelines on quality provision of TNE, and their implementation in the regional networks.
The seminar gathered more than 100 participants from all continents. Regional QA networks (Asia-Pacific, South America, Africa, etc.) and representatives from the Council of Europe, ENIC-NARIC, UNESCO-CEPES, ESU, Education International and BusinessEurope were invited and encouraged to contribute to the seminar.
The seminar programme can be found here.