Clearinghouse Works to Improve Student Data Portability Around the World
The National Student Clearinghouse is continuing its efforts to ease administrative burdens associated with verifying the academic credentials of students studying abroad.
The Clearinghouse, along with seven countries and two European educational organizations, was one of the original signatories of the Groningen Declaration at the first annual Digital Student Data Depositories Worldwide (DSDDW) seminar in April 2012. As explained on their site, the Groningen Declaration “is a worldwide effort to develop best practices and globally accepted standards for the secure, citizen centered consultation of educational data — allowing globally mobile citizens to share their authentic educational data with whomever they want, whenever they want, wherever.” Recently, the G.R.E.E.N. statement of principles was endorsed by the Groningen Declaration Network. G.R.E.E.N., the Global Registrar EduRecord Exchange Network®, established by the Clearinghouse, is dedicated to promoting a free, open, principles-driven data exchange ecosystem through which electronic student academic records can be securely exchanged worldwide. Building on the initial efforts of the Groningen Declaration, the Clearinghouse has joined a European Commission (EC) project, called Erasmus Without Paper, which is currently being considered by the EC for funding. The project’s goal, if approved, is to disrupt the current paper-driven Erasmus mobility process, which is a limiting factor to the international European portability goals sought by the over 4,000 higher education institutions participating in the Erasmus program.
G.R.E.E.N., the Global Registrar EduRecord Exchange Network, established by the Clearinghouse, is dedicated to promoting a free, open, principles-driven data exchange ecosystem through which electronic student academic records can be securely exchanged worldwide.
The Clearinghouse is playing a consultative role and helping to inform data transmission standards. Our hope is that, as the European Commission project moves forward, we can establish a set of standards-driven exchange networks that abide by very clear data and document transmission standards, in addition to data and privacy standards.
In addition, we have launched the pilot between the Clearinghouse and DUO, an agency of the Dutch Ministry of Education, which was announced in April 2013. The pilot, which is based on our DegreeVerify℠ service model, enables student postsecondary credentials to be verified between U.S. and Dutch institutions via the Web at no cost.
This past April, the 2014 Groningen Declaration Network meeting was held at Georgetown University and co-organized by DUO, the Clearinghouse, and AACRAO. During the meeting, our CEO, Rick Torres, gave an overview of a new pilot that the Clearinghouse is conducting with two Chinese education agencies: CHESICC (the China Higher Education Student Information and Career Center) and CDGDC (the China Academic Degrees and Graduate Education Development Center). As part of the pilot, the Clearinghouse will enable the electronic exchange of transcripts and academic documents between CHESICC and CDGDC, as well as pilot U.S. postsecondary institutions, in order to facilitate a smoother international admissions process. At the conclusion of the Groningen Declaration Network meeting, many attendees visited the Clearinghouse’s offices in Herndon, VA, where they learned more about the unique role that the Clearinghouse plays within the U.S. education community, as the trusted partner of higher education institutions for relieving their administrative burdens.
Also in April, the Clearinghouse hosted a delegation from China, which was coordinated by the National Committee on United States-China Relations. The delegation members, representing the national Ministry of Education as well as provincial education bureaus and six Chinese universities, visited various U.S. locations to learn more about our higher education system and university international student services.