HEN-GEAR project: description

Higher Education Network for Human Capital Assessment and Graduate Employability in Armenia

The project aims at uphold the higher education reforms and modernization process in place in Eastern Neighboring Area, by addressing quality assessment and support of graduates’ employability in Armenia. Despite important steps in moving towards further integration of employment policy into the overall policy framework (2008-2012 Sustainable Development Programme-SDP) youth unemployment remains a serious issue. Moreover, current information base do not allow monitoring of the training system, the labor market, and the link between them, to forecast skills requirements of the labor market and training needs (World Bank 2006).

The project will thus support Armenian Universities in identifying instruments and methodologies to improve the effectiveness of education system through the implementation, at local levelof a graduates database system that, following the Almalaurea model in Italy, pursue two main goals:

  1. provide an efficient tool to Universities and Government for the monitoring of long lasting impact of HE on society and improving educational supply accordingly;
  2. supporting employability and collaboration between education and business sector.

The system will allow enterprises to search for graduates to employ according to specific skill needs while allowing graduates comprehensive and democratic access to labour market. The project will be supported by AlmaLaurea, in strong collaboration with Armenian Universities in  all activities from DB implementation to dissemination. Training of University staff will be performed on all aspects, from IT development to DB promotion, within students communities and towards the business sector to ensure project sustainability. Identification of instruments and methodologies on how to use the indicators and the statistical data will be provided during specific training sessions. All the project results will be largely diffused through international conferences, meetings, publications and a web site.

 

The Armenian partners decided to develop this project proposal due to the important possibility to transfer locally the national database system concept as developed by AlmaLaurea, finding Armenian context starting condition close to those showed by the Italian context. In particular the aims of this system implementation are the following:

 

  • to support the effectiveness of quality assessment practices with reliable statistical evidence on graduates features, as indicated by ENQA (European Association for Quality Assurance in Higher Education);
  • to fullfill gaps in existing statistics;
  • to facilitate the access of graduates to the job market at national as well as at international level;
  • to consolidate relations between universities and companies at national as well as at international level;
  • to increase in value the National University system as a whole.