The ENIC Network (European Network of Information Centres)
To implement the Lisbon Recognition Convention and, in general, to develop policy and practice for the recognition of qualifications, the Council of Europe and UNESCO have established the ENIC Network (European Network of National Information Centres on academic recognition and mobility). The Council of Europe and UNESCO jointly provide the Secretariat for the ENIC Network. The ENIC Network cooperates closely with the NARIC Network of the European Union.
The Network is made up of the national information centres of the Parties to Lisbon Recognition Convention. An ENIC is a body set up by the national authorities. While the and specific competences of ENICs may vary, they will generally provide information on:
- the recognition of foreign diplomas, degrees and other qualifications;
- education systems in both foreign countries and the ENIC’s own country;
- opportunities for studying abroad, including information on loans and scholarships, as well as advice on practical questions related to mobility and equivalence.
The NARIC Network (National Academic Recognition Information Centres)
The NARIC network is an initiative of the European Commission and was created in 1984. The network aims at improving academic recognition of diplomas and periods of study in the Member States of the European Union (EU) countries, the European Economic Area (EEA) countries and Turkey. The network is part of the Community's Lifelong Learning Programme (LLP), which stimulates the mobility of students and staff between higher education institutions in these countries.
All member countries have designated national centres, the purpose of which is to assist in promoting the mobility of students, teachers and researchers by providing authoritative advice and information concerning the academic recognition of diplomas and periods of study undertaken in other States. The main users of this service are higher education institutions, students and their advisers, parents, teachers and prospective employers.
The NARICs were designated by the Ministries of Education in the respective countries, but the status and the scope of work of individual NARICs may differ. In the majority of States, institutions of higher education are autonomous, taking their own decisions on the admission of foreign students and the exemption of parts of courses of study programmes that students may be granted on the basis of education undertaken abroad. As a result, most NARICs do not take a decision, but offer on request information and advice on foreign education systems and qualifications.
Bologna Process and European Higher Education Area
The European Higher Education Area (EHEA) is the result of the political will of 48 countries which, step by step during the last eighteen years, built an area using common tools. These 48 countries implement reforms on higher education on the basis of common key values – such as freedom of expression, autonomy for institutions, independent students unions, academic freedom, free movement of students and staff. Through this process, countries, institutions and stakeholders of the European area continuously adapt their higher education systems making them more compatible and strengthening their quality assurance mechanisms. For all these countries, the main goal is to increase staff and students’ mobility and to facilitate employability.
This official website of EHEA provides both general information on this process and detailed information for experts.
The Magna Charta Universitatum
The Magna Charta Universitatum is a document that was signed by 388 rectors and heads of universities from all over Europe and beyond on 18 September 1988, the 900th anniversary of the University of Bologna. It contains principles of academic freedom and institutional autonomy as a guideline for good governance and self-understanding of universities in the future. Academic freedom is the foundation for the independent search for truth and a barrier against undue intervention for both government and interest groups. Institutional autonomy is a prerequisite for the effective and efficient operations of modern universities. It also underlies the unique constellation of study, teaching and research, as represented by the European university for the last millennium, and must be further developed without abandoning these universal principles. The universities now refer to this text as the standard of their belonging to an international community sharing the same academic values and purposes. It also underlies the unique constellation of study, teaching and research, as represented by the European university for the last millennium, and must be further developed without abandoning these universal principles. The universities now refer to this text as the standard of their belonging to an international community sharing the same academic values and purposes.
Erasmus Student Network (ESN)
ESN is the biggest student association in Europe. It was born on the 16th October 1989 and legally registered in 1990 for supporting and developing student exchange. We are present in more than 800 Higher Education Institutions from 39 countries. The network is constantly developing and expanding. We have around 15,000 active members that are in many sections supported by so called buddies mainly taking care of international students.Thus, ESN involves around 34,000 young people offering its services to around 200,000 international students every year.
European University Association (EUA)
EUA was formed in 2001 as the result of a merger between the Association of European Universities (CRE) and the Confederation of European Union Rectors’ Conferences. With 850 members across 47 countries, EUA is the largest and most comprehensive organisation representing universities in Europe. 17 million students are enrolled at EUA member universities. As the voice of Europe’s universities EUA supports and takes forward the interests of individual institutions and the higher education sector as a whole.
EUA provides unrivalled opportunities for members to share best practice by participating in projects, events and other mutual learning activities involving a wide range of universities. EUA’s website, briefings and newsletters keep members well-informed about these activities and European developments which impact on their activities.
Above all, EUA provides members with unique opportunities to influence and shape future European policy and initiatives affecting higher education and research. Through its work and contacts with the European Commission, Parliament and other key decision-makers, EUA ensures universities’ interests and concerns are taken up with all key stakeholders.
European Association for International Education (EAIE)
Founded in 1989, the EAIE is the acknowledged European centre for expertise, networking and resources in the internationalisation of higher education.
We are a non-profit, member-led organisation serving individuals actively involved in the internationalisation of their institutions through a combination of training, conferences and knowledge acquisition and sharing. We equip academic and non-academic professionals with best practices and workable solutions to internationalisation challenges and provide a platform for strategic exchange. We partner with key stakeholder organisations and institutions to promote our membership interests, and advance international higher education in Europe and the rest of the world.
The International Association of Universities (IAU)
IAU, founded in 1950, is the UNESCO-based worldwide association of higher education institutions. It brings together institutions and organisations from some 120 countries for reflection and action on common concerns and collaborates with various international, regional and national bodies active in higher education. Its services are available on the priority basis to Members but also to organisations, institutions and authorities concerned with higher education, as well as to individual policy and decision-makers, specialists, administrators, teachers, researchers and students.