Designing a "Nationwide Graduate Panel in Germany 2017" (buildAP) - joint project of the DZHW with INCHER Kassel

Start of the project: 01-Aug-2015 - End of the project: 30-Jun-2017

The German Centre for Higher Education Research and Science Studies (DZHW) and the Universität Kassel's International Centre for Higher Education Research (INCHER) have agreed to carry out a joint panel study of graduates from 2017 onwards and to collaborate beforehand on designing the survey. This decision was made in view of the fact that graduate surveys are becoming increasingly important - for a range of user groups (research, higher education administration, education monitoring and higher education policy) - but at the same time, conflicts on field access are increasingly being registered within the research field.

Previously the DZHW has carried out a graduate study in Germany with a nationwide sample every four years. INCHER Kassel coordinates the annual graduate surveys of around 70 higher education institutions (HEIs) in the collaborative KOAB graduate surveys project. The aim of the buildAP project is to design a joint survey for the 2017 graduate cohort, to be carried out as far as possible with a unified questionnaire. The aim is to design a project that will cover the data collection requirements of academic higher education research as well as requirements for HEI-specific findings and for national reporting on education, while also finding an attractive, contemporary format to help increase public reception of the findings. Another important aspect of the design phase is discussion and agreement with institutes that carry out graduate surveys for individual federal states (Bavaria, Saxony, Rhineland-Palatinate and Baden-Wuerttemberg (universities of applied science)).

Workshops: the design phase covered by the buildAP project comprises a period of approx. 1.5 years during which a total of six workshops will be carried out. The workshops are thematically structured and form core elements of the project, primarily giving the opportunity for theoretical and methodological checking and further development of the survey design and tools. The workshops are designed as expert forums where the whole range of user interests will also be represented. This is intended to strengthen communication structures between the relevant actors in the field of graduate research.


  • Workshop 1 "Introduction and research issues" 7 October 2015 (Kassel)
  • Workshop 2 "Further academic qualifications: transitions, educational careers" 26 November 2015 (Hannover)
  • Workshop 3 "Entering a career, career start, career paths" 18 February 2016 (Kassel)
  • Workshop 4 "Educational pathways, education experience, education evaluation" 12 May 2016 (Hannover)
  • Workshop 5 "Context data to explain educational and career paths" planned for September 2016 (Kassel)
  • Workshop 6 "Final work on the survey design and ensuring data quality" planned for February 2017 (Hannover)

Whole project

Contact person

Gregor Fabian
Gregor Fabian +49 511 450670-133

External Contact

, INCHER Kassel
, INCHER Kassel
, INCHER Kassel


Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung

In cooperation with

International Centre for Higher Education Research