Matured electronic student data exchange solution EMREX is off to a great start

Erasmus+ funded collaboration EMREX-project that was created to support the student mobility by creating technical solution to ease the recognition process was put to production in summer 2017. After the first six months, over 150 000 people in Europe logged in to share or receive student data.

The EMREX Network empowers individuals to control their own electronic student data and exchange it across borders, for example, in applying for studies, getting employed or recognizing a degree.

– The process of admission and recognition is costly and inefficient today, and EMREX hoped to lower the barrier for foreign exchanges by making the process easier. The main priority that EMREX project addressed was the Europe 2020 strategy target that 20% of higher education students should be mobile during their studies, says the Chair of the EMREX Executive Committee, Development Manager Jonna Korhonen from CSC.

Greatly appreciated by students

The development of the EMREX solution started as policy experimentation project of six partners from Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Italy and Poland. In 2015–2017, the project was co-financed by the European Commission through the Erasmus+ programme. The partners built a technical solution and network to exchange electronically achievement data and then tested the solution with exchange students in a field trial in the partner countries.

– The experiences from the field trial showed that the technical solution is easy to use, adaptable to different national contexts, and greatly appreciated by the students.

Enlargement and consolidation

In 2018, the former project countries together with new members formed the EMREX User Group to maintain, develop and support the EMREX solution. The first Annual Assembly was held on 17 April 2018 in Paris, France in connection to the Groningen Declaration Network Seminar.

– The Annual Assembly was a very successful meeting with a lot of enthusiasm, good discussions and ideas how to develop the tool and take the international collaboration further. We are especially glad to have many new associate members onboard from Europe, Australia, USA and China, says Korhonen.

The initial goal of EMREX was to lower the barrier for foreign exchanges by making the processes easier. Whilst digitizing student records by placing individual at the center of data management, the EMREX project fostered interoperable environment for free flow of educational data across borders. By enhancing the availability of data and increasing business opportunities for various actors across Europe, EMREX supports European data economy. For example Norwegian employers have already implemented EMREX clients for receiving data directly into their recruitment systems, and more is to come.

– The next step in year 2018 is to expand the network, provide support material for future members but also to develop the shared ELMO standard further to support e.g. Diploma Supplement delivery.