Skills beyond school

AHELO Media Buzz


What the press and blogs are saying about AHELO

 Highlights | International Press | Blogs | Other articles





The OECD's AHELO: a PISA for higher education?

A presentation of AHELO by Diane Lalancette


Times Higher Education, 16 September 2010

Mapping the plateaux as well as the peaks, by Dirk van Damme (Head of OECD-CERI)

Reproduced with the kind permission of Times Higher Education

"The world of higher education is changing utterly and we must all find our way in it. (...) Mass higher education in a global knowledge economy needs a very high number of institutions that achieve good quality. The implicit suggestion that excellence is something to be found only at the top may be appropriate for elite systems, but not for 21st-century mass higher education."


The Chronicle of Higher Education, 28 January 2010

OECD Project Seeks International Measures for Assessing Educational Quality by Aisha Labi

Reproduced with the kind permission of "The Chronicle of Higher Education".

"The first phase of an ambitious international study that intends to assess and compare learning outcomes in higher-education systems around the world was announced here on Wednesday at the conference of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation."


Times Higher Education, 1 April 2010

Collaboration may not measure up in competitive 'alpha-male' rankings, by John Morgan

Reproduced with the kind permission of Times Higher Education

"Anyone who enjoys poring over world university rankings to see whether their institution did better than its rivals is indulging in an "alpha-male" activity, a professor has said."


 International Press


University World News, 22 May 2012

The shape of higher education to come by Karen MacGregor


The Chronicle of Higher Education, 13 June 2011

A New European Ranking: Prizes for All! by Ben Wildavsky

A blog post on the unveiling of the results of the U-multirank feasibility study.


University World News, 22 May 2011

UNESCO debates uses and misuses of rankings, by Jane Marshall


Intellectual Economics, N 2(8), 2010

The OECD initiative for an Assessment of Higher Education Learning Outcomes by Diane Lalancette

"At a time when innovation, knowledge and human capital are at the core of our economies and societies’ progress, higher education has a key role to play in preparing students to become effective workers and citizens. The OECD has a long standing interest in improving the quality of higher education to equip the next generation with the tools and opportunities for success. But we need to first overcome information gaps in the evidence base on learning. Therefore, the AHELO feasibility study is a groundbreaking attempt to assess whether it is possible to measure on an international scale what undergraduate students know and can do."

University World News, 19 December 2010

No rankings provide all the answers, by Martin Ince


The Chronicle of Higher Education, 14 December 2010

An international test's promise for higher ed, by Ben Wildavsky

"(...) its [the AHELO project] architects hope eventually to produce value-added results, looking not only at a snapshot of what students know but at how much they improve during their time at university. This would be a breakthrough in global higher-education assessment."


University World News, 22 August 2010

University Spending key to recovery - OECD, by David Jobbins

Interview of Richard Yelland.

"The crisis did not change universities' responsibility to use resources efficiently - but makes it more urgent."


University World News, 4 April 2010

Finding the world's best economists and engineers, by Yojana Sharma

"Do Chinese and Indian universities turn out more skilled engineers than British and American ones? Which university produces the best economists?"


University World News, 28 February 2010

Global: Establishing Academic Standards

"The privatisation of higher education in many countries has increased the financial incentive for institutions to compromise standards to maintain their viability. It has also led to the increased influence of institutions and their managers over lecturers and their academic decisions which were previously more strongly influenced by disciplinary norms and the expectations of the 'invisible college'."


Times Higher Education, 1 February 2010:

OECD may fill ‘missing link’ in world rankings, by John Morgan

Reproduced with the kind permission of the "Times Higher Education".

"An international study will measure and compare learning outcomes at universities around the world – and could provide the “missing link” for university rankings.

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) launched the Assessment of Higher Education Learning Outcomes (AHELO) initiative in Washington on 27 January."


Inside Higher Ed. 28 January 2010:

Measuring Student Learning, Globally by Doug Lederman

Reproduced with the kind permission of "Inside Higher Ed.".

"The Assessment of Higher Education Learning Outcomes (AHELO) project aims to gauge whether it is possible to develop "reliable and useful comparisons of learning outcomes" that are valid across countries with different cultures and languages, said Richard Yelland, who heads the Education Management and Infrastructure Division at the OECD. The experiment will focus on producing three separate measures: one designed to measure general skills, and two in disciplines, economics and engineering."


Global Higher Ed, 28 January 2010

OECD launches first global assessment of higher education learning outcomes

"AHELO is emerging at an historical moment when the clamoring for a better understanding of learning outcomes, and associated processes of quality assurance, is evident around the world."


University World News  25 October 2009:
It's the learning, stupid, by Jamie P. Merisotis


Times Higher Education (United Kingdom) 8 October 2009:
Rankings 09: Measures Matter by Jamil Salmi and Roberta Malee Bassett

Reproduced with kind permission of "Times Higher Education".

"As acceptance- begrudging or otherwise- of rankings has settled into the tertiary education environment, the debate has moved on how to improve their methodology to provide more useful and legitimate data on which to base well-informed decisions"


Washington Monthly (United States) September/October 2009:

International Studies: How America's mania for college rankings went global by Ben Wildavsky

"The best bet in the rankings world may be an initiative that the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development has in the works, called the International Assessment of Higher Education Learning Outcomes, or AHELO (...) It's an approach that focuses on the missing link in the rankings explosion: outputs and value-added rather than inputs and reputation".


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Measuring learning in a global marketplace, by Ben Wildavsky (Education Today)

AHELO: Telling you what you need to know about higher education outcomes(OECD Insight)

Rankings are not a disease, they are a symptom, by Richard Yelland (Education Today)


GlobalHigherEd, 22 September 2010

Rankings: a case of blurry pictures of the academic landscape?,by Pablo Achard


Beerkens' Blog (Netherlands) 14 August 2008:

More Rankings: Shanghai Jiao Tong, Forbes (&AHELO?) by Eric Beerkens

"This challenge of actually measuring the value-added provided by the university is taken up by the OECD's AHELO project: assessing learning outcomes in higher education (sometimes referred to as the PISA for higher education)...and although the OECD explicity does not want to promote it as a ranking, it might provide an alternative for the league tables".

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 Other articles

Lukratívne skoly uz dlho zadarmo nebudú by Tomas Dejedly

An interview of the Minister of Education Eugen Jurzyca (in Slovak).

March Bulletin of the INQAAHE (International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education) 

Interview with Fabrice Hénard.


UniSpiegel, 12 April 2010

Der Ruf ist zweitrangig

Interview with Barbara Ischinger (in German)


Dradio, 12 February 2010

PISA für Akademiker

Reproduced with the kind permission of Campus & Karriere, a program from


La Tercera, 1 February 2010:

OCDE desarrollará un nuevo instrumento de medición para medir la calidad de educación en universidades.

"La Organización para la Cooperación y el Desarrollo Económico (OCDE) presentó la semana pasada en Washington la Evaluación de la Educación Superior a través de los Resultados de Aprendizaje (AHELO, por sus siglas en inglés).

El estudio busca medir y comparar los resultados del aprendizaje en las universidades de todo el mundo, lo que podría proporcionar a los expertos el "eslabón perdido" para medir la calidad de la educación superior a nivel mundial y desarrollar rankings universitarios mucho más objetivos."


Press release on 27 January 2010

Die Zeit (Germany) 27 August 2009:

Auf Die Platze, fertig - los! by Von Jan-Martin Wiarda

"Europaische Universitaten schneiden schlecht ab in den welweiten Rankings. Sie kritisieren deren Erhebungsmethode. Versprechen neue Verfahren mehr Gerechtigkeit"


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 Read about AHELO's Origins


OECD Observer October 2008:

Breaking Ranks


OECD Observer June 2006:

Higher Education: Quality: Equity and Efficiency