Higher Education Reforms in OECD countries, 2008-2014

Higher Education Reforms in OECD countries, 2008-2014

Governments increasingly look at how to achieve ambitious reforms in education to improve results. But such changes are not easy to make: education change takes time, options for improvement may not be evident, groups with vested interests may hamper reforms, and politicians may face conflicting priorities or lack evidence on what can work best within the context. Through a review of different countries’ context, challenges and experience in implementing education reform, this publication offers directions and strategies to facilitate successful introduction of changes. It provides a comparative review of policy trends and explores specific higher education reforms (tertiary level) across the OECD to help countries learn from one another and choose the reforms best adapted to their needs and context. Below the post you can also download full extracted database of education reforms (all levels) in OECD countries, due to Education Policy Outlook 2015: Making Reforms Happen.

Australia

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Advancing Quality in Higher EducationPreparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiaryThe Advancing Quality in Higher Education plan (2012-14) introduces various performance measurement initiatives to improve teaching and learning in higher education.
Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Programme Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program provides additional funding to help universities attract, support, and retain students from disadvantaged backgrounds. These students may receive financial support through income support grants for eligible students and income contingent loans available to all students (see http://studyassist.gov.au/sites/StudyAssist/StudentIncomeSupport).
National targets for higher educationPreparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary In addition to the above VET targets, the Australian Government has also set two national targets for higher education: 1) Attainment: by 2025, 40% of all 25-34 year olds will have a qualification at bachelor level or higher 2) Participation: by 2020, 20% of higher education enrolments at undergraduate level will be people from low socio-economic status.
New Colombo PlanPreparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary To promote internationalisation at the tertiary level and increase collaboration in the region, Australia is piloting the New Colombo Plan (2013), which provides funding for Australian students to study or intern in the Indo-Pacific region.
1-Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency; 2-Skills Quality AuthorityPreparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Vocational education and trainingIn 2011, two new national regulators were established at the tertiary level: the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) for VET and the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) for higher education. The ASQA seeks greater national consistency and increased rigour in registering training providers, accrediting courses and monitoring the quality of the system. The TEQSA aims to ensure that students receive high-quality education at any higher education institution.
Upholding-Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching measuresPreparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiary In tertiary education, Australia has introduced the Upholding Quality – Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching measure (2014).

Austria

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
University structural funds ordinanceFundingUse of resourcesAustria launched a reform of university funding to increase the number of degrees and decrease dropout. The university structural funds (University Structural Funds Ordinance, 2012) were implemented in 2012/13, and the capacity-based discipline-specific university funding will be implemented in the course of the decade, depending on budget allocation.
Increased study places in Universities of Applied SciencesPreparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiary The Federal Ministry of Science and Research increased the study places at Universities of Applied Sciences to meet the needs of technical and business professions. At the end of this phase of expansion (2012/13 to 2014/15), approximately 4 000 additional places will be available at universities of applied sciences. National statistical reports have shown an increase in the overall student body from 16 782 in 2011/12 to 17 956 in 2012/13.
Mapping Process for the Austrian Higher Education System Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The Mapping Process for the Austrian Higher Education System (2011) was implemented through four projects: development of physical infrastructure (building development plan), large scale-research infrastructure, university funding and a co-ordination platform (the Austrian Higher Education Conference).

Belgium

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Landscape DecreePreparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiary Belgium (French community): The Landscape Decree (Décret Paysage, 2014) defining the higher education system and academic organisation of schooling (Article 79) aims to enable an individualised school trajectory for students from all types of higher education institutions. The decree also sets up the Higher Education and Research Academy (l’Académie de Recherche et d’enseignement supérieur, ARES), to serve as a platform for co-ordination and dialogue.
Parliamentary Act Preparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiary Belgium (Flemish community): A parliament act to improve quality in tertiary education (2012) introduced institutional assessments to complement the current programme accreditation mechanism.
Short-cycle tertiary education as part of the national qualifications processPreparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Belgium (Flemish community): A national qualifications’ structure introduced a short-cycle tertiary education level (2009) to promote access to tertiary education and to better meet labour market needs.

Canada

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Scholarships for innovation and researchFundingUse of resourcesCanada provides funding for innovation and research through: 1) scholarships for master’s, doctoral and postdoctoral students as part of the strategic priorities (2013-16) of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council; and 2) scholarships and fellowships for undergraduate, postgraduate and postdoctoral students through the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

Chile

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Bill under discussion: Sistema de Financiamiento para la Educación SuperiorFundingUse of resourcesTo avoid discrimination of students according to the type of institutions, a bill under discussion seeks to consolidate, systematise and homogenise the various forms of student financial aid schemes under a single system (Sistema de Financiamiento para la Educación Superior).
Scholarship for tertiary education (Becas de Educación Superior) Funding Use of resourcesThe Scholarship for Tertiary Education (Becas de Educación Superior) programme expanded previous scholarship programmes to cover all students with satisfactory educational performance belonging to the lowest 60% of household income distribution.
Subsidy to private student loans (Credito con Aval del Estado) FundingUse of resourcesModifications made in 2012 to the laws regulating financial aid to students at the tertiary level added a subsidy to private student loans (Crédito con Aval del Estado, CAE) so that effective real interest rates of student loans are capped at 2% and loans are income contingent.
Educational information system (Sistema de Información de la Educación Superior, SIES) Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The Ministry of Education has been developing an information system (Sistema de Información de la Educación Superior, SIES) which aims to provide information on economic returns, indicators on the financial situation of institutions, and academic attributes like vacancies, enrolment rates, number of professors, etc., so that students are better placed to make informed decisions about their future. UPDATE: This policy was established under Article 49 of Law 20.129 from 2006.
Superintendent of Higher Education Preparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiaryTo support quality assurance in tertiary education, a draft bill is in process with the aim to increase monitoring and promote quality in higher education through the creation of a Superintendencia de Educación Superior and a reformulation of the process by which programmes and institutions receive accreditation. This draft bill also defines performance standards and defines a compulsory accreditation process.

Estonia

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Higher education reform: means-tested financial support for students, free education FundingUse of resourcesA higher education reform that introduces means-tested financial support for students and ensures the right of free education for all full-time students was implemented (2013). As part of this reform, legislative changes were made in the University Act (Ülikooliseadus) and Professional Higher Education Act (Rakenduskõrgkooli seadus) to introduce free education for full-time students starting with the academic year 2013/14.
Performance-based funding system for Higher Education Institutions Funding Use of resourcesA new performance-based funding system for Higher Education Institutions has also been introduced in 2013. This new funding policy puts more emphasis on the quality and internationalisation of the system.
1-Vocational Educational Institution Act; 2-Vocational Education Standards Preparing Students for the Future Vocational education and training Estonia aims to continue modernising VET programmes by focusing on advancement of key competencies and stressing the importance of workplace practice. Estonia is reforming its VET system with the implementation of the Vocational Educational Institution Act (2013), which sets the legal framework to improve the quality of teaching and practical training in VET, implement distributive leadership in VET institutions and modernise the funding structure and infrastructures. The Vocational Education Standards (2013) aim to create an output-based curriculum, introduce new courses in upper secondary VET, create conditions to intensify and shorten studies, and create a new unit of calculation of course credits.

Finland

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
1-Universities Act; 2-Funding reform as part of the Universities Act Preparing Students for the Future FundingQuality of tertiary Use of resourcesA Universities Act (2009) gives further administrative and financial autonomy to universities as independent corporations under public law or as foundations under private law.
Polytechnic reform Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary According to the Government Programme, the Polytechnic reform (2011-2014) will transfer polytechnic funding to the government and polytechnics will become independent legal entities. The reform aims to improve the quality and impact of polytechnics, as the operating licenses of polytechnics will be renewed highlighting the quality. The reform is expected to take effect from 2014
Reform of student admissions and the central government transfer system Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary A reform of tertiary education student admissions and study structures (by the end of 2015) aims to improve students' transition from secondary to higher education and include a joint admission system for both universities and polytechnics.
Strategy for the Internationalisation of Higher Education Institutions Preparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiaryA Strategy for the Internationalisation of Higher Education Institutions in Finland 2009-15 outlines the goals for internationalisation of higher education, including increasing the quality and attractiveness of institutions.

France

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Reform of the system of bursaries Funding Use of resources The reform of the system of bursaries awarded on social grounds to students in tertiary education was initiated at the start of the 2013-14 academic year, in particular for the most disadvantaged and middle-class students. New measures will be adopted at the beginning of the 2014-15 academic year. The aim of this reform is to improve the conditions of success for students from less affluent families, who are sometimes forced to take on paid employment for an excessive number of hours.
University Communities (Communautés d’universités et établissements, ComUE) Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The University Communities (Communautés d’universités et établissements, ComUE, 2013) aim to structure and simplify tertiary education. Site contracts (about 30) will be signed between the Ministry of Higher Education and Research and groupings of tertiary education institutions. These site contracts are an attempt to target the governance level considered an appropriate scale for structuring and implementing coherent local policies, thus reinforcing universities’ national and international visibility.
Law of 22 July 2013 Preparing Students for the FutureTransition between school and work At tertiary level, the law of 22 July 2013 reaffirmed the importance of measures to promote integration in the labour market. Experience in work environments (apprenticeships, placements, etc.) has been made compulsory in vocational bachelor’s and master’s degree courses. An awareness of entrepreneurship was also introduced into the curricula in general. The law aims to double the number of interns by 2020. For further information, see Spotlight 2 and 4 in the Country Profile

Germany

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Higher Education Pact 2020 Funding Economic resources in education A Higher Education Pact 2020 (Hochschulpakt 2020) between the Federation and the Länder will invest additional funds to expand study opportunities and meet the increasing demand for higher education. Funding is provided in comparable shares by the federal government (EUR 7 billion from 2011 to 2015) and the Länder.
Quality Pact for Teaching Funding Economic resources in education The Quality Pact for Teaching (Qualitätspakt Lehre, 2010) aims to improve study conditions and quality of teaching in public higher education institutions. The Federation will provide EUR 2 billion between 2011 and 2020, and 77% of publicly maintained institutions benefit from the support.
Federalism Reform I Governance Organisation of decision making process Since the Federalism Reform I (2006), the Länder are fully responsible for construction of higher education institutions. The goal is to clarify the distribution of roles in federal relations and to modernise the federal system.
Accreditation Council for Higher Education Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary In 2005, the Accreditation Council for higher education was established. Its task is to organise the system of quality assurance in learning and teaching in tertiary education and to accredit study programmes.
Excellence Initiative Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The Excellence Initiative (Exzellenzinitiative des Bundes und der Länder zur Förderung von Wissenschaft und Forschung an deutschen Hochschulen, 2005) aims to promote top-level research and young researchers, and to enhance international competitiveness. Funding increased by 30% to about EUR 2.7 billion until 2017.

Greece

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Law on the Structure, Operation, Quality-Assurance of Studies and Internationalisation of Higher Education Institutions Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The Law on the Structure, Operation, Quality-Assurance of Studies and Internationalisation of Higher Education Institutions (2011) introduces a time limit in the duration of studies to increase graduation rates.

Hungary

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
National Higher Education Act Funding Economic resources in education As part of the National Higher Education Act (2011) and the Decree on national higher education excellence (2013), Hungary aims to switch from direct public funding of higher education institutions, also known as normative funding, to a funding system based on state financed scholarships. This reform aims to create an equality-based support allocation model for higher education institutions and faculties satisfying pre-defined quality criteria.
Tied Student Loan FundingUse of resources In tertiary education, students who do not receive a state scholarship are eligible for a state-subsidised student loan at a fixed interest rate of 2% to cover their study-related expenses as part of the Tied Student Loan (2012).
Decree on National Higher Education Excellence Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Additionally, in 2013, the quota system for selection of applicants was replaced by minimum score requirements per study programme and admission based on programme capacities (Decree on National Higher Education Excellence, 2013).
Decree on the Admission Procedure in Higher Education Preparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiaryAs part of the Decree on the Admission Procedure in Higher Education (2012), Hungary is gradually raising the minimum admission requirements to universities. Hungary aims to gradually increase the minimum score requirement between 2013 and 2016.
National Higher Education Act Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiaryThe National Higher Education Act (2011) introduces new short-cycle higher education programmes as an effort to better meet the demands of the labour market. Hungary also aims to widen the partnership between tertiary education institutions and the industrial sector by introducing practical training at business partners’ enterprises in the curricula of specific programmes.
System-level reforms Preparing Students for the Future Vocational education and training System-level reforms have been adopted between 2011-13 in VET, better matching skills with labour market needs, strengthening the professional content of teaching/learning at secondary level, and providing larger workplace training and tools for a higher stakeholder engagement (Act No. CLXXXVII of 2011 on VET).

Iceland

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
National Qualification Framework for Higher Education (No 80/2007) Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary New National Curriculum Guidelines for pre-primary, compulsory and upper secondary education (2011-13) and a National Qualification Framework for Higher Education (No 80/2007) have been defined to ensure the quality of education.
Quality Council for universities Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary A Quality Council for universities was established.

Ireland

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Higher education reforms Funding Use of resources Higher education reforms (2011) aim to ensure efficient funding. These reforms include a gradual increase of student tuitions between 2011 and 2015. Further information can be found in the Country Profile.
Third Level Bursary Scheme – scholarship scheme Funding Use of resources A mean-tested grant and a new scholarship scheme aim to temper the effect of the tuition increase on students from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds. Further information can be found in the Country Profile.
National Strategy for Higher Education to 2030 Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The National Strategy for Higher Education to 2030 sets out the basis for development of the higher education sector over the next two decades. Recommendations for the implementation strategy are underway, and a progress report is available on the DES website at www.education.ie.
ICT Action Plan Preparing Students for the Future Transition between school and work As a direct response to skills shortages in information and communication technology (ICT), a joint government-industry ICT Action Plan was developed.
Springboard programme Preparing Students for the FutureTransition between school and workThe Springboard programme (2011) funds free part-time courses in higher education for unemployed individuals in areas with labour market skills shortages.

Israel

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
1-Academics for Teaching; 2-Teach First; 3-Outstanding Achievers for Education 4-Educational Pioneer; 5-Atidim programme School Improvement Teachers Some programmes have sought to attract university-level graduates into the teaching profession in general and to science areas in particular. In Academics for Teaching (2008), participants undergo an intensive teacher-training programme (no tuition fees and a monthly allowance) and teach full-time with a commitment to teach for three years. They receive a normal teacher’s salary in addition to a supplement, and after the three years they can enrol, for free, in a master’s degree in return for an additional two years’ commitment. Other programmes to attract individuals to the teaching profession are Outstanding Achievers for Education (to attract students with good performance at the tertiary level, 2009), Teach First (to promote teaching as an interim career move following graduation from university, 2010), Educational Pioneer (to encourage those already working with youth in other contexts to become teachers) and the Atidim programme (to encourage English and science teachers to work in remote and disadvantaged areas, 2002).

Italy

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Multiannual Planning Fund (Fondo per la Programmazione) - Performance based funding Funding Use of resources The Multiannual Planning Fund (Fondo per la Programmazione) supports initiatives that contribute to the Ministry’s multiannual strategic plan (law n. 240/2010).
Operating Fund (Fondo di finanziamentoordinario, FFO) - Performance based funding FundingUse of resourcesItaly set up performance-based funding in tertiary education. The Operating Fund (Fondo di finanziamento ordinario, FFO) provides a lump sum to universities (86% in 2013), and the rest (13.5% in 2013) is granted according to regular on-time student enrolment and research results.
Accreditation and quality assurance criteria for doctoral programmes (Ministerial Decree 45/2013) Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Ministerial Decree 45/2013 defines accreditation and quality assurance criteria for doctoral programmes.
University Reform (Law n°240) Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Following a comprehensive reform of tertiary education (law n. 240/2010), a new quality assurance and accreditation system for institutions and study programmes has been implemented. The system is divided into three steps: 1) an ex ante accreditation, 2) a periodical accreditation and 3) a periodical evaluation. Law 240/2010 also aims to fully integrate doctoral training in the degree structure. The law also defines standards and criteria for institutions to set up a doctoral programme, and Ministerial Decree 45/2013 defines accreditation and quality assurance criteria for doctoral programmes.

Japan

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Scholarship loan programme Funding Use of resources Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) enhanced the scholarship loan programme for students in higher education and introduced an interest-free scholarship loan with an income-contingent repayment policy (2012) to improve access to higher education.
International Students Plan Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The government formulated the 300 000 International Students Plan (2008) to increase the number of overseas students in Japan to 300 000, and is currently promoting acceptance of high performing overseas students in Japanese universities.
Cooperation between public and private sectors Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Examples of initiatives undertaken include a new system where public and private sectors co-operate to assist Japanese students studying abroad.
Go Global Japan Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Go Global Japan (2012) is an initiative which MEXT supports universities in providing students with strong foreign language and communication skills.
Initiative for Emerging Global University Preparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiary MEXT is mobilising budget and systemic resources to support top Japanese universities to compete internationally as part of the Initiative for Emerging Global University (2014).
Revitalisation Strategy Preparing Students for the FutureQuality of tertiaryJapan aims to double the number of Japanese students overseas by 2020 as part of the Japan Revitalisation Strategy. The Japan Revitalisation Strategy will also aim to increase the number of overseas students in Japan.

Netherlands

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Loan system for students Funding Use of resources A new loan system for students (2014) will be introduced in 2015/16 for bachelor’s and master’s degree programmes.
Performance agreements Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Performance agreements (2012-15) setting goals for 2015 have also been signed with all higher education institutions, which will be evaluated on the basis of these agreements.
Quality in Diversity in Higher Education law (Wet Kwaliteit in verscheidenheid hoger onderwijs) Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The Quality in Diversity in Higher Education law (Wet Kwaliteit in verscheidenheid hoger onderwijs, 2013) advances the deadline for applications to enter higher education to May 1st and sets study checks to help prospective students make an informed decision about their future education. Activities in these study checks include online questionnaires, interviews with prospective students, and attending a lecture or a seminar.

New Zealand

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Student Achievement Component Funding Use of resources The Student Achievement Component is an investment approach used by the government to fund tertiary education, in part linked to educational performance of the institution. It is based on four indicators: progression, retention, course completions and qualification completions. Industry training organisations will also have performance-linked funding.
Tertiary Education Strategies Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The Tertiary Education Strategies (TES) set the government’s five-year direction and priorities in tertiary education. The most recent Tertiary Education Strategy (2014-19) aims to promote a more outward-facing and engaged tertiary education system, where there is a strong focus on achieving better outcomes for students.

Norway

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
National Qualifications Framework for Higher Education Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The National Qualification Framework was adopted for higher education in 2009 and is implemented in all higher education institutions.

Portugal

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Cost revision measures and criteria Funding Use of resources At the tertiary education level, cost revision measures included reduction of operating costs, and revision of the criteria for setting the number of vacancies in public tertiary institutions, while trying to adjust the educational offer to the country’s needs (2014). Two public universities in the Lisbon Region, the University of Lisbon (Universidade de Lisboa) and the Technical University of Lisbon (Universidade Técnica de Lisboa), were merged into a single institution.
Graduate Studies Grant Programme FundingUse of resourcesTo limit the impact of the current budget cuts due to the financial crisis on academic research and R&D, Portugal is developing the Graduate Studies Grant Programme (Bolsas de Formação Avançada, 2013), managed by the Foundation for Science and Technology.
Legal Regime of Higher Education Institutions (Regime jurídico das instituições de ensino superior, RJIES) Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary At the tertiary level, a new Legal Regime of Higher Education Institutions (Regime jurídico das instituições de ensino superior, RJIES, 2007) aims to give some tertiary education institutions an autonomous status and to increase the autonomy of all tertiary institutions to make decisions on curricula, research and financial administration.

Slovak Republic

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Higher Education Act Funding Economic resources in education The new HEI financing system was introduced by the Higher Education Act (2002). It sets out two categories of changes in financing HEIs: 1) the overall change of financial management of HEIs; and 2) the change of the allocation of funds from the state budget to HEIs. New financial management of HEIs includes: 1) introduction of multi-source financing with funds coming mostly but not completely from the state budget; 2) allowing transfer of unspent state subsidies to the following year; 3) subsidies in the form of block grants; 4) the possibility for HEIs to own property; and 5) visualisation of the true economic state of HEIs by introduction of fully accrual accounting, which has enabled the recent start of a full costing project. A new system of allocation from the state budget to HEIs introduced four kinds of subsidies: 1) for realisation of accredited study programmes, depending on the teaching performance of the HEI; 2) for research, depending on the research performance of the HEI; 3) for further development of the HEI, for accepted development projects; and 4) for social support of students in the form of grants, accommodation, meals, sport and culture. Some strengths of the system identified by the Slovak Republic are the clear rules and transparency of allocation of subsidies from the state budget; the motivation for HEIs to increase teaching and research activities; the specific and focused support for development in selected areas; the support of access to higher education through the system of social scholarships; and the incentives for students through motivation scholarships.
Amendment to the Higher Education Act Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The Higher Education Act (2012) was amended and approved by the Slovak Parliament to reorganise the self-governance of HEIs.

Slovenia

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Electronic higher education information system (eŠ) Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The ministry also established the electronic higher education information system (Evš, 2012), which includes data on higher education institutions, publicly verified study programmes, students and graduates. The Evš is an analytical tool that facilitates regular monitoring of the system’s operations and the development and streamlining of higher education policies. As a central source of data on student status, the Evš also helps to verify the right of students to public subsidies and different forms of financial aid instruments.
Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary At tertiary level, the Slovenian Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (2010) was established as an independent agency according to Standards and Guidelines in quality assurance in the European Higher Education Area. It is listed in the European Quality Assurance Register for Higher Education (EQAR).

Spain

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
National Agency for Quality Assessment and Accreditation (Agencia Nacional de Evaluación de la Calidad y Acreditación, ANECA) Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Given the autonomy of tertiary institutions, the National Agency for Quality Assessment and Accreditation (Agencia Nacional de Evaluación de la Calidad y Acreditación, ANECA) was created in 2002 to improve the quality of tertiary education through evaluation, certification and accreditation of the institutions.
Proposals for reform and improvement of quality and efficiency of the Spanish university system Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport has launched a dialogue with the university community and other education stakeholders on the reform of Spanish universities. This process started with the publication in 2013 of the Proposals for the reform and improvement of quality and efficiency of the Spanish university system (Propuestas para la reforma y mejora de la calidad y eficiencia del sistema universitario español), by the Experts’ Commission for the Reform of the Spanish University System (Comisión de Expertos para la Reforma del Sistema Universitario Español). The proposals focus on five main aspects: • governing bodies of the universities • professors and academic career • funding • degrees and titles • quality evaluation. In addition, the Ministry has started publishing data on graduates’ employment by type of university degree in order to build better knowledge on professional employment of university graduates in Spain.

Sweden

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Swedish National Agency for Higher Vocational Education Preparing Students for the Future Vocational education and training The Swedish National Agency for Higher Vocational Education (NAHVE, 2009) administers a common framework of publicly funded vocational education at the post upper secondary level, decides which programmes will receive public funding and be included in the framework, audits the quality and outcomes of the courses, and analyses and assesses demand for qualified labour and trends in the labour market.

Turkey

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Funding support for Foreign Students Funding Use of resources Funding support is being introduced for students from outside the European Union and the European Economic Area to attend higher education institutions in Turkey.
Lifelong Learning Strategy Document and Action Plan Governance Education priorities Three key development plans steer education in Turkey: the Strategic Plan for the Ministry of National Education (2010-14), the recent Tenth Development Plan (2014-18) and the Lifelong Learning Strategy Document and Action Plan (2009-13; 2014-18).
Increasing the number of universities Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Tertiary education initiatives include: a) increasing the number of universities from 115 to 168 between 2007 and 2012;
Two-stage university entrance examination Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Tertiary education initiatives include:b) introducing a two-stage university entrance examination: a common general knowledge exam and the Bachelor Programme Placement Examinations in Turkish, social sciences, mathematics, science and foreign languages to allow students to choose programmes (in 2010 by the Council of Higher Education [YÖK]);
Consultation on restructure and redesign of tertiery education system Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Tertiary education initiatives include: c) YÖK consultations with universities and other stakeholders to restructure and redesign Turkey's tertiary education system;
National Qualifications Framework for Higher Education Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary Tertiary education initiatives include: d) completing and piloting the competencies of the National Qualifications Framework for Higher Education in Turkey (2010), which are within the scope of the Bologna Process and the Lisbon Strategy objectives.

United Kingdom

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
Independent Review of Higher Education Funding and Student Finance Funding Use of resources United Kingdom (England): In 2009, England commissioned an Independent Review of Higher Education Funding and Student Finance. Its findings, issued in Securing a Sustainable Future for Higher Education (2010), were translated into a reform implemented in 2012. The main feature was a steep increase in tuition fees for UK/EU students... Further information: See Spotlight 10 in Country Profile.
Review of Higher Education Preparing Students for the Future Quality of tertiary United Kingdom (Wales): In Wales, a review of higher education (2013/14) focused on issues such as widening access to higher education, promoting social mobility, tuition fee policies and student financial arrangements.

United States

Policy NamePolicy LeverPolicy ThemeDescription
American Opportunity Tax Credit Funding Use of resources The American Opportunity Tax Credit (2009) assists families with college costs.
College Scorecard Funding Use of resources The Department of Education (ED) created a College Scorecard (2013) to inform on college costs, graduation rates, loan default rates, amounts borrowed and employability.
Increase of Federal Pell Grant FundingUse of resourcesTo improve access to tertiary education, the maximum Federal Pell Grant award increased by 19% since 2008, and the number of recipients has expanded by 50%.
Model financial aid disclosure form FundingUse of resourcesA model financial aid disclosure form (2011) aims to clarify to students the type of aid they qualify for and compares aid packages offered by colleges and universities.
Pay as You Earn FundingUse of resourcesThe Pay as You Earn (2013) plan enables eligible students to cap student loan repayments at 10% of monthly income.

You can also download full extracted database of education reforms (all levels) in OECD countries, 2008-2014 in PDF by the following link: Education reforms (all levels) in OECD countries, 2008-2014

 

Data extracted, post prepared by Volodymyr Satsyk

Resources used: Education Policy Outlook 2015: Making Reforms HappenEducation Policy Outlook Reforms Finder

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