HEQCO report evaluates Canadian PSE performance

March 13, 2015

A new report published by the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) has found that the amount of money postsecondary systems have matters less than how they spend it. HEQCO's Canadian Postsecondary Performance: Impact 2015 report used 34 indicators to measure provincial postsecondary system outcomes across 3 dimensions: access, value to students, and value to society. Outcomes were then considered in relation to operating cost-per-student to produce an overall performance score. The report found that provinces vary in their strengths, but that in every province there is a positive link between PSE and labour market success, individual earnings, citizen engagement, and economic contributions. "Some things are more important to some provinces than to others. We want [the report] to be used as a tool for the development of effective policies that are tailored to a jurisdiction and that are focused on achievement and outcomes," said HEQCO President Harvey Weingarten. Bonnie M Patterson, President of the Council of Ontario Universities, commented that "it's a positive report about our performance as a university sector. But if [the government] wants us to improve, there is a point where elasticity runs out, you gain your efficiencies, and you make your trade-offs ... At some point you can't get a change in indicators unless you are making some investments." HEQCO Summary | Full Report | Globe and Mail