Analytic Quality Glossary


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Citation reference: Harvey, L., 2004-22, Analytic Quality Glossary, Quality Research International,

This is a dynamic glossary and the author would welcome any e-mail suggestions for additions or amendments. Page updated 20 January, 2022 , © Lee Harvey 2004–2022.


Novel Recipes




core definition

Portability (in higher education) is the ability to engage with or make use of learning in a more than one setting.

explanatory context

Portability usually refers to the portability of the outcomes of learning, viz. the qualification. In some contetxts, portability refers to the portability of learning, that is, the ability to access learning in a variety of way. This is close to the idea of blended learning. For example, the University of Surrey Roehampton (2007) noted:

Learning - Higher education is becoming increasingly just a stage in the lifelong educational process. The portability of learning necessitates “blended learning” which frees the learner from constraints of place and time and blends physical virtual mobility. Increasing the portability of learning opportunities must become one of the most important strategic priorities for European higher education at every level.

The Bologna Process was established in part to encourage the mobility of teachers, rsearchers and students and with it unemcumbered recognition of qualfications. In short, portability.

analytical review

For ACCA (2012, p. 3) a portable qualification is:

a qualification which is recognised by key regulatory and education authorities around the world.


Vermont State College System (undated) asks:

What is Portability?

Portability is the policy that allows Vermont students to use their Vermont state grant to attend the education or training program that will best meet their needs.

Portability expands educational opportunities for eligible Vermonters far beyond that which a small state of limited resources can offer. The goal is to provide these students with the same opportunities that exist for those who have greater financial means. The studentís choices are dependent on ability, aspirations and preparation.

associated issues


related areas

See also

blended learning




ACCA, 2012, ACCA Education Recognition Status, available at, accessed 6 September 2012, page not available 8 January 2017.

University of Surrey Roehampton, 2007, New Perspectives for Learning: Briefing Paper 57, 'Reforming higher education for lifelong learning and enlargement of the European Union', last updated 28 June 2007.

Vermont State College System, undated, 'What is portability?', available at, accessed 8 January 2017, not found 28 June 2019.

copyright Lee Harvey 2004–2022

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