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Graduate Tracer Studies

The Graduate Tracer Studies have been conducted annually at the University of Cologne since 2008. The graduate survey enables us to gain an insight into the course of studies and the connections between studying at the University of Cologne and graduates’ career success. The Evaluation of Studies and Teaching | Higher Education Research at the Vice-Rectorate for Studies and Teaching has been responsible for the Graduate Tracer Studies since January 2014.

From 2008 until 2015, the Graduate Tracer Studies at the University of Cologne were carried out in cooperation with the International Centre for Higher Education Research-Kassel (INCHER-Kassel) in the framework of the Graduate Survey Cooperation Project (KOAB). This cooperation will be continued for the years 2017 and 2019, because all universities in the German Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia have an obligation to participate in the KOAB framework for comparative purposes every other year, as set out by the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Research (MIWF). For the years 2016, 2018 and 2020, however, the University of Cologne is permitted to conduct an own graduate survey as long as it does not conflict with the graduate survey of the German Centre for Research on Higher Education and Science Studies (DZHW).

In order to better respond to university and subject specific interests in the future, in 2016 the University of Cologne carries out an own graduate survey for the graduate cohort of 2015. The faculties and central institutions were involved in the survey development so as to optimize the usability of the compiled data, e.g. for the purpose of study programme improvement. The graduate survey of the University of Cologne is based on the KOAB questionnaire to ensure the compatibility with previous and future results of the KOAB survey.