Labour MEP for Ireland South, Phil Prendergast, has welcomed the announcement in Dublin by Androulla Vassiliou, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, of a new broad-ranging, objective University ranking system to become operational in the EU.
The new system, which has received €2million in EU funding from the Lifelong Learning Programme is designed to help tackle flaws in current university rankings which are too heavily weighted towards research excellence.
Speaking from Brussels, Ms. Prendergast said “This new system will help overcome some of the prejudices and snobbery that were inherent in the old system, which disproportionately favoured historic universities as opposed to over modern third level institutes and universities.
“I welcome this new multi-faceted ranking system as universities in the past were being forced to pander to the biases in the ranking system in order to attract the best students from home and abroad. The new system is more holistic in its approach and takes into account, for example reputation, as defined by the report, as well as research and quality of teaching.
“It is also welcome that the new system allows prospective students to input their own criteria in order to help decide which University is best for them according to their own ambitions, career orientation and learning methods.”
“Personally, I think it is very hard to get an idea of any third level university or institute from a ranking on its own. Deciding which university to attend is an incredibly personal decision. There needs to be a certain level of “fit” between a student and a university, and I am glad that the new system takes this into account.”