2018 Global Forum

A Global Forum on Student Well-Being 
And Outcomes in Education
Register today!


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International Branch Campuses: Success Factors of Mature IBCs 2017
The OBHE & C-BERT of SUNY, Albany & Pennsylvania State University                 
Headline Findings


The International Quest to Define and Improve Student Success

On November 4-5, 2018 the Global Forum will take place at the V Hotel Curio Collection by Hilton in Dubai, UAE. This year’s theme is “The International Quest to Define and Improve Student Success. A global forum on student well-being and outcomes in higher education”. Don’t miss your chance to register at the early bird rate by 30 September!

The knowledge partner of the 2018 Global Forum is the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) in Dubai. Each year, the Forum brings together policy-makers, researchers, faculty, and practitioners to delve into some of the most salient topics in international higher education—this year, student well-being and outcomes in HE.

The Forum’s keynote talk will be delivered by Sir Anthony Seldon, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Buckingham and one of the world’s leading thinkers on student well-being.  The topic is “Improving Student Success- The positive and mindful university”. Other compelling sessions include “Putting happiness and well-being at the heart of education”, "International and national approaches to student success”, and “Big Data- the search for new insights”.

Speakers and delegates to date hail from a range of organisations including KHDA, Quality Assurance Agency (UK), JISC (UK), TEQSA (Australia), CPE (Singapore), SP Jain, Zayed University, Heriot-Watt University, TecMilenio University, and i-graduate, and locations including UK, USA, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Mexico, UAE, and moreGet £200 off your fee by registering by 30 September.

The Call for Proposals is now closed. Submitters of proposals will be contacted shortly.

15 August 2018

Tertiary Edge: Employment rates and earnings premiums of Germany’s university graduates

Rachael Merola, Senior Researcher, OBHE

Germany has been a dynamic and powerful force in higher education in recent years. It eliminated tuition fees at public universities in 2014, has 44 universities in the world’s top university rankings, and enrolls 15% of all tertiary students in the EU. This article explores the growth of Germany’s tertiary education, looking at data on attainment, employment rates and earnings premiums.  

Full article available for members.


7 August 2018

Counting Everything (except outcomes)- Looking for data on student success in Kenya

Richard Garrett, Director, OBHE

Mature higher education systems struggle with student success data- what to collect, what to report, how to meet the needs of different stakeholders- so what do less developed systems do? 

Kenya is a good case study. Before 1989, the country had just four universities and 30,000 tertiary students, but today there are over fifty universities, plus another 30+ that offer programs in collaboration with universities. This reflects population change. With over 50 million people, Kenya is already among Africa’s largest countries by headcount, and has grown by more than 50% since 2000. 
University enrollment doubled between 2005 and 2009, doubled again by 2014, and now stands at over half a million. Other tertiary enrollment has also accelerated, hitting 275,000 by 2017. Some university growth has involved non-university institutions attaining university status. Despite all this momentum, only about 15% of Kenyans aged 18-24 are enrolled in tertiary education- up significantly from years past but adrift of the global average which is about 30%. 
In such a rapid growth environment, with many more Kenyans attending university and other tertiary education than a generation ago, what data do policymakers and prospective students rely on to judge success? 
In terms of published data, Kenyan higher education is much more focused on inputs than outcomes.  

Full article available for members.


20 July 2018 

Usual and Unusual. Looking for data on student success in Singapore

Richard Garrett, Director, OBHE

As part of OBHE’s 2018 focus on student success and outcomes, we are working a number of country case studies. The goal is to summarize how specific countries define and report student success. Our series selects countries from various global rankings of national higher education systems, such as QS and Universitas 21. Diversity by region and size informed our selection.

Our series kicks off with Singapore, ranked ninth best higher education system in the world in 2018 by Universitas 21. The U21 ranking includes a number of “output” measures, but only two concern student outcomes:

1)      Percentage of the population aged 25–64 with a tertiary qualification
2)      Unemployment rates among tertiary educated aged 25–64 years compared with unemployment rates for those with only upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary education

The first metric is about graduate quantity in relative terms, while the second uses employment as a proxy for quality. Together, these two metrics account for only 6% of U21’s scoring model.

Inevitably, such rankings rely on data available across multiple countries, which aids comparability but obscures national data differences. The question OBHE wants to ask is what else can we learn about student success in Singapore? The two student success metrics employed by U21 both span forty-year periods, and therefore say very little about any recent innovation around student success definitions, data or reporting.

Singapore covers the basics when it comes to student success and outcomes data- number of graduates and recent graduate employment. The country has also pioneered reporting of TNE student outcomes. 

Full article available for members.


27 June 2018

What do we know about the outcomes of EMI courses in higher education?

Carolyn Walker, OBHE Associate; Consultant in International HE; Former Academic Director at INTO

According to Dr Denise Abreu e Lima (President of Languages without Borders, Brazil), speaking at the British Council’s recent Going Global 2018 conference in Malaysia, “Language is the structure of internationalisation. If a university wants to internationalise they need to invest in language and a language policy”. For many higher education institutions worldwide, recognition of this fact has helped to drive a growing global trend: the teaching of courses through the medium of English, otherwise known as ‘English Medium Instruction’ (EMI) or alternatively ‘English Taught Programmes’ (ETPs). This relatively recent development has been described as a “galloping phenomenon” which is “pandemic in proportion” and “the single most significant current trend in internationalizing higher education”.

Full article available for members.


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International tertiary numbers up 200% in two decades – OECD, The PIE News,  20 September 2018

A Costa Rican Campus, Inside Higher Ed, 19 September 2018

The Typology of HEIs, The Daily Guardian,  18 September 2018

Egypt signs protocol to regulate American Diploma's certificate, Egypt Today, 16 September 2018

Relax rules on foreign students staying to find work in UK, report says, The Guardian, 11 September 2018

International students: diversity in universities has to be matched by integration, says top VC, Australian Financial Review,  10 September 2018

Canada's Affordability Policies Are Worth a Good Long Look, Inside Higher Ed (blog),  10 September 2018

Arab-Chinese HE cooperation on the rise, EUniversity World News, 8 September 2018

Korean government slashes university intake as population falls, University World News, 7 September 2018

UK University Tuition Fees after Brexit, William Clarence Education (blog),  7 September 2018

Bank of Mum & Dad: Global int'l student funding gap revealed, The PIE News, 3 September 2018

Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) signs MoU with Florida International University (FIU), The Hindu,  3 September 2018

More colleges admit to providing U.S. News with bad data, EducationDive, 2 September 2018

These factors lead to prejudice against international college students Futurity: Research News, 2 September 2018

Bangladeshi students heading for univs abroad on rise,,  1 September 2018

Canada's growing reliance on international students, Policy Options,  30 August 2018

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Forthcoming Events


16-29 August 2018:40th Annual EAIR Forum 2018, Budapest, HUNGARY

10 September 2018:  Westminster Higher Education Forum Keynote Seminar, Developing the Knowledge Exchange Framework, London, UK

11 September 2018:ICEF Higher Education Partnership Forum, Geneva, SWITZERLAND

11-14 September 2018: EAIE 2018 Annual Conference, Geneva, SWITZERLAND

20 September 2018:UOC-coordinated Skill Up Project Multiplier Event, Stockholm, Sweden

27-29 September 2018:  NACAC 74th National Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA

9-12 October 2018:  AIEC 2018, Sydney, AUSTRALIA    

1 November 2018:Westminster Higher Education Forum: Developing the Teaching Excellence Framework, London, UK

4-5 November 2018:  OBHE Global Forum in partnership with KHDA, Dubai, UAE

7-10 November 2018:  CIEE Annual Conference, Barcelona, SPAIN

9 November 2018:  ACA Seminar, 'Mobility-migration nexus: policies, practicies, discourses and evidence', Brussels, BELGIUM

13-15 November 2018:  IAU 2018 International Conference, Kuala Lumpur, MALAYSIA


20-23 January 2019:  AIEA Annual Conference, 'What's next - Possibilities and probabilities in the future of international higher education, San Francisco, CA, USA

7 February 2019:Westminster Higher Education Forum seminar 'Priorities for international student recruitment: next steps for the visa system, pricing strategies and the international student experience', London, UK

February 2019:  IIE Summit, 'The Future of International Education', New York, NY, USA

23-25 October 2019:  6th Conference of the Americas on International Education (CAIE), Bogota, COLOMBIA

3-7 November 2019:  28th International Council for Open and Distance Learning (ICDE) World Conference on Online Learning, 'Transforming Lives and Societies', Dublin, IRELAND

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