Main objectives

Objectives of the CALOHEE feasibility study

The main objective of this European Union funded feasibility study is to develop the infrastructure that will eventually make it possible to test bachelor and master students’ performance Europe-wide across a range of fields in a way that satisfies the needs of the various stakeholders in the European higher education community. It should provide evidenced-based tools to measure success and support universities in their efforts at continuous improvement.

The project covers five subject areas, representing five significant academic domains: Engineering (Civil Engineering), Health Care (Nursing), Humanities (History), Natural Sciences (Physics) and Social Sciences (Education). The methodology to be developed should also be applicable for other fields of study.

The infrastructure to be developed consists of a number of elements:

  • A state of the art framework, also called reference points or benchmark, for each of the five subject areas (disciplinary fields) involved in the study, covering both the bachelor and master level based on the European Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning (EQF for LLL) model of the European Union, taking into account the Dublin Descriptors of the Qualifications Framework for the European Higher Education Area (QF for the EHEA). These frameworks will each be based on the relevant Tuning booklet published in 2008/9;
  • An overarching state of the art framework for each of the sectors / domains involved in the study, covering both the bachelor and the master level based on the EQF for LLL;
  • A detailed multi-dimensional and multi-pillared assessment framework or test blue print (based on the subject area / sectoral framework) for each of the five subject areas involved;
  • A matrix model to distinguish between different types of Higher Education institutions;
  • Detailed work plan for the creation and implementation of transnational assessments at subject area level;
    White paper explaining costs/benefits for various assessment designs; allowing for evidence based decisions regarding an actual comparative assessment phase.

The frameworks to be developed in the five fields will use the same methodology, but they will be tailored to the characteristics of each domain or subject area, taking into account the diversity of missions, orientations and profiles of universities in Europe and their various degree programmes.

By multi-dimensional it is meant to cover different dimensions typical for a subject area and different approaches applied regarding the learning process. By multi-pillared it is meant to cover different types of outcomes: theory and research skills, application of knowledge and skills, preparation for employability related to the field involved and preparation for active citizenship.

These frameworks are expected to facilitate the development of actual (trans)national assessments in the future which will allow university management, academics and students to understand whether students are achieving internationally defined levels of competences which prepare them for their role in society in terms of personal development, civic and social engagement and employability, while meeting agreed academic standards.