phepub_coverThe publications starts out with a short historical view on “academisation” and “professionalisation,” illustrating how much professional higher education (PHE) in Europe has been in flux in the past years. Examples from France and Ireland, are used to argues how a new spectrum of missions, differences in national organisation of PHE and a variety of denominations for PHE providers and programmes has slowed down a shared understanding of what PHE commonly characterises.

We suggest a validated definition for PHE and present a structured set of characteristics (framework) including quality criteria. The three framework dimensions: policy and strategy, teaching and learning, and research, development and innovation are accompanied by examples of PHE from several European countries. Those examples where gathered from programmes and institutions that have developed a clear professional profile in all or most of the framework criteria. The report also outlines differences in PHE systems in 15 EU member states for curricular requirements, PHE provision on EQF levels, the recognition of professional degrees, and, not less importantly, access to (research) funding.

We conclude with recommendations to European and national policy-makers, the providers of PHE policy, and individuals/organisations working on quality development.


Authors: Anthony F. Camilleri, Stefan Delplace, Marek Frankowicz, Raimund Hudak, Anne-Christin Tannhäuser
Publication Date: 2015
ISBN: 978-1-63041-763-5
Funded by Project: HAPHE
Keywords: : comparative education, education, education policy, professional higher education, quality assurance
Publication Type: : Project Reports


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