• PhD fellowship offer

Would you like to undertake a PhD striving for quality in Higher Education?


The project: University Rankings (UR) to assess Quality in Higher Education Institutions (HEIs)

In the context of a globalized world, with constant technological and social changes, higher education institutions (HEIs) find the need to continuously improve their performance for Quality Education.

Since University Rankings (UR) contribute to the definition of Quality in HEIs and its relevance to promote universities in a context of increasing internationalization, the main purpose of the PhD proposal offered here is to perform the analysis of UR (scope, metrics, methodology) and study the influence of institutional processes on UR. The study will focus on exploring the effect of university indicators on rankings in order to prioritize improvement actions that will impact on enhancement of institutional processes and UR results.

At the present time, UR are just starting to introduce sustainability metrics in line with the UN 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which is posing a challenge for HEIs. In fact, very few rankings consider these indicators but there is an increasing trend to introduce them. The research project will involve studying the impact of introducing SDGs into rankings while studying how to apply and assess the performance of sustainability principles (SDGs) to all university activity dimensions, from teaching and research to other processes. The contribution will be two-fold. Firstly, at an institutional level, the development of evaluation tools (introducing appropriate indicators) will be key to ensuring achievement of the SDGs. Secondly, undergraduate and Master’s degrees must integrate sustainability competences into their curriculum. In this sense, it will be necessary to advance in teaching innovation for the improvement of the university in order to provide future graduates with the necessary skills to catalyse the change towards a more sustainable society. Therefore, the purpose of the project is to explore the impact on rankings when implementing SDGs at an institutional level and integrating sustainability competences into HEIs curriculums by analysing how these competences are appreciated in UR.

Rankings include parameters associated with opinion surveys completed by stakeholders, such as graduates, faculty and employers asking about graduates’ competences. The development of transferable competences in students through the curriculum design is important to meet labour market demand and improve employability. The goal of the project in which you will participate is to study the relationship of UR with transferable competences developed during the teaching-learning process. This objective will involve the development of methodologies to identify valuable transferable competences from stakeholders and the design of appropriate didactic methodologies as well as assessment tools to be applied during the teaching-learning process.

Fellowship details

  • This fellowship guarantees 3 years of competitive funding.
  • A September 2022 start will be ideal but later dates may be negotiated.
  • You’ll be part of a dynamic team at IQS Barcelona.
  • We will provide training opportunities, close supervision, and space for creativity.

Your profile

  • An MSc degree is required. The MSc and/or BSc degrees should be in Chemistry, Biotechnology, Engineering and dual
    degree in Business Management will be appreciated. Knowledge in statistics will be required.
  • Strong motivation to conduct interdisciplinary studies.
  • Capacity to work independently and in a team, creativity, excellent written and oral communication skills, and fluency in
    English will be greatly valued.
  • Strong academic record will be a plus.

Applications are welcome until June 15th

If you would like to apply for this fellowship, please send: tailored motivation letter, CV, academic record (BSc and MSc), and contact details of two referees to judith.baguena@iqs.url.edu