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Date of print: 23/09/23

Work programme 2009-2012

Mapping the implementation and application of the Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance

Network meeting Copenhagen, Denmark 17/01/2012

Launch conference of the Mapping the implementation and application of the Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area Consortium.

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The project will provide a systematic approach to assess how the European Standards and Guideliness (ESG) have been interpreted and applied in the Bologna Signatory Countries. The mapping exercise will closely look into possible areas of concern in the structure and contents of the ESG. It will consider whether there are developing areas of higher education (such as Life-long Learning, transnational education or e-learning) that are not covered in the current version of the ESG.

As mentioned in the European Commission report on progress in Quality Assurance in Higher Education, “awareness of the quality standards varies between countries and constituencies, but considerable experience with their application has been gained […]”.

The five-year experience in the implementation of the ESG has provided clear evidence of their usefulness and applicability in various national contexts and within differing organisational missions and setups. The applicability of the ESG in different settings is a clear asset of the EHEA and constitutes a real European dimension.

After five years of experience with implementing and applying the ESG, it is important to thoroughly investigate how the ESG have been implemented and applied in relation to their original purpose. Ample evidence can be found about applying the three parts of the ESG, e.g. in higher education institutions (HEIs), QA agencies and at national level.


The MAP-ESG  consortium consists of four associations, of which ENQA acts as the project coordinator.


1st phase (October 2010-December 2010)

The first step of the project consists of gathering preliminary feedback from stakeholders on the application of the ESG, in order to identify the most relevant issues to be investigated in the actual evaluation process. In this phase, the core questions to be sent to to all respondents in the consultation phase will be formulated. In addition, the project consortium will agree upon the tools for the consultation process. The internal consultation among the project consortium’s member organisations may differ from organisation to organisation but a common framework will be agreed upon. A template is being developed for processing and presenting the gathered data in similar manner between organisations.

2nd phase (December 2010-October 2011)

In the second phase, specifically chosen respondents, namely HEIs, QA agencies, EQAR, students and other stakeholders will be consulted on their experience in the application of the ESG. In addition, an open consultation will be announced in the project consortium’s homepages.

3rd phase (October 2011-December 2011)

In the third phase, information gathered during previous phases will be analysed. The template for presenting and compiling the outcomes of the different consultation strands will be used to present and process the information. A draft report will be discussed with relevant stakeholders before it is finalised.

4th phase (December 2011- April 2012)

Finally, in a fourth dissemination phase, the report will be submitted to the BFUG and a dissemination conference of the project arranged. Further dissemination and exploration of results will take place after the launching of the report.

Launch conference

The purpose of the MapESG Launch conference was to present and discuss the findings of the project “Mapping the implementation and application of the ESG in the EHEA” (MAP-ESG) and the recommendations to the Bologna ministerial conference 2012 on further development of the ESG.

The conference, organised in partnership by ENQA, EUA, EURASHE and ESU, gathered around 150 participants from BFUG, representatives of ministries, national rectors’ conferences, student organisations, quality assurance agencies, employers.

Conference programme

  • Welcome – Stefan Delplace (EURASHE)
  • MAP-ESG: Findings and recommendations – Fiona Crozier (ENQA) / Discussion
  • Responses by Henning Dettlef (BusinessEurope), Colin Tück (EQAR), Education International, and Tonne Flood Strom (Government Representative) Discussion – Moderator : Allan Päll (ESU)
  • Conclusions – Lesley Wilson (EUA)

Final report

Download the Final report on Mapping the implementation and application of the Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area

This report presents the results of the activities carried out in the context of the MAP-ESG project. In doing so the report provides the first overarching study on the implementation of the ESG in all its parts, and a thorough analysis of their impact.
The report is based on the analysis of expert views from all relevant actors and stakeholders in higher education, notably teachers and students, higher education management and internal quality assurance bodies, external quality assurance agencies, EQAR and ministries, and the social partners.

Published: 17/01/2012 - Last modified: 20/01/2017
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