Bologna Process

The Bologna Process started with the Sorbonne joint Declaration on Harmonisation of the Architecture of the European Higher Education System signed in May 1998 by the Ministers of Education of four countries (France, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom), followed one year later by the Bologna Declaration on 19 June 1999 signed by 29 Ministers responsible for Higher Education ("Joint Declaration of European Ministers of Education, Bologna 1999"). Other countries members of the European Cultural Convention of the Council of Europe have progressively signed this Declaration and joined the movement.
The Bologna process aims to create a European Higher Education Area by 2010. The Bologna Declaration suggests actions to establish a common framework for national educational systems:

  • introduction of comparable academic grading and a diploma supplement (which will be part of EUROPASS in 2005) to facilitate academic and professional recognition of qualifications and support mobility;
  • a common accumulation and credit transfer system such as ECTS (European Credit Transfer System;
  • a common structure based on three levels: BMD (Bachelor, Master and Doctorate)

The Bologna Process, now extends beyond the Member States:  46 countries have now joined and more have expressed an interest.