There is no single clear-cut idea of what quality is or should be in the Danish higher education system. The concept of quality is diverse and much debated. As are the attempts to measure the effect of initiatives aimed at improving degree programme quality. PIQUED (Pathways to Improve Quality in Higher Education) will provide new research-based knowledge about the quality development work, its effects and how to measure these.

The project aims to establish inclusive, context-sensitive evidence about pathways for improving the quality of Danish higher education degree programmes.

The project examines how degree programme quality is conceptualised and how it is approached through degree programme quality initiatives. Based on international research, existing quality indicators and an in-depth empirical collection of data from the stakeholders of universities, university colleges and academy profession degree programmes, the project aims to identify the factors that contribute to increasing degree programme quality.

Subsequently, PIQUED will conduct three studies of the effects of degree programme quality initiatives at Aarhus University, the Technical University of Denmark and the Metropolitan University College. These case-based studies will combine stringent quantitative methodology with in-depth qualitative analysis.

Finally, PIQUED will critically assess the existing practice regarding the documentation and assessment of degree programme quality initiatives in the educational sector. The project will develop new methods and indicators to consolidate the work on improving degree programme quality and the methods for estimating what works. In this way, PIQUED will contribute to educational development and to the decision-making process on the road towards improved degree programme quality.