Frequently asked questions

Questions regarding the tracer study

What is the "University Graduates and the Labor Market" Tracer Study?
The "University Graduates and the Labor Market" Tracer Study is the first national study that tracks the connection between the graduates’ university studies and their careers.
What is the study about?
The study consists in the application of a questionnaire that tracks down a graduate’s career starting with his/her university studies, continuing with the moment of getting his/her first job and then with other important issues for his/her professional evolution. The questionnaire is available online and mostly contains „closed questions” (the type that can be answered by ticking or selecting out of a pre-established list). For those who do not have acces to the Internet, a printed version is also available.
Who can participate?
The study addresses the graduates of bachelor studies, who graduated in 2006 and 2010 with a diploma, in one of the universities participating in the project. The list of universities participating in the survey is available here http://www.absolvent-univ.ro/home/useful-information/participating-universities.aspx.
*A first research was conducted on 2005 and 2009 graduates, who had a period of almost 4 and a half months to fill in the questionnaire (from 23rd November 2010 to 31st March 2011)
Why should I participate in this survey?
The participation in this survey is voluntary and does not imply any material reward. As a result, the decision to participate or not is up to each graduate, depending on his/her own interest and degree of understanding the significance of the study for the Romanian society in general and the Romanian education system in particular. However, some possible reasons, generally valid, are suggested to you at: http://www.absolvent-univ.ro/home/reasons-for-your-participation.aspx.
What do I have to do to participate?
The participation in this survey consists in filling in the questionnaire corresponding to the class to which you belong. In order to fill in the online questionnaire, you have to enter an acces code. If you have previously received an invitation letter from the university, your access code was included in that letter and, to fill in the questionnaire, all you need to do is access the graduate survey page on your university’s website or the link http://absolvent-univ.ro/chestionar.aspx. In order to receive a printed version of the questionnaire, you have to send a request using the contact data included in the invitation letter. This is also applicable if you want to receive an invitation letter and, implicitly, an access code. The contact data of the universities’ representatives can be found at http://www.absolvent-univ.ro/home/useful-information/participating-universities.aspx.
Why do I have to use an access code?
The access code is a randomly generated password for each graduate participating in the survey, ensuring the anonymity of the graduate and protecting against unauthorized access. This access code is also a tool that allows the participants to take a break in filling in the online questionnaire at any time and log on again with the same access code at a later point in time, without loosing any of the data entered. The access code allows the correlation of the answers given by those graduates who expressed their willingness to participate in a follow-up survey scheduled four years after. Entering the access code on the first page of the paper questionnaire is also requested so that one’s access to the online questionnaire can be deleted and the persons who have already responded to the survey can be identified. These graduates then will not be sent further reminders to participate in the survey.
How long will it take to fill in the questionnaire?
Based on the testing, the time required for filling in the online questionnaire has been estimated to about 30 minutes, while for the paper questionnaire, about 15 more minutes are necessary.
How do I fill in the online questionnaire?
You can start filling in the questionnaire immediately after accessing the graduate survey webpage and entering the access code (which ensures your anonymity). It is recommended that you read the short section of instructions before (this will be available for you all through the filling in process). Most questions can be answered by „left click” on the answer (simple answer) or answers (multiple answer) chosen. Where required, a selection must be made out of the available lists. Sometimes, the information related to years or other issues is to be entered in the space provided. The answers are saved immediately after you go on to the next page using one of the „Forward” buttons (at the top or at the bottom of the page). The answers saved in a previous page can be modified by going back (using the „Back” buttons) and all the fields contained are automatically made active again. You can take a pause in filling in the questionnaire at any time, without loosing the information entered so far. You can resume the process by reconnecting to the page using the same access code. After accessing the last page of the questionnaire, the filling in will be completed. Nevertheless, you can go on correcting your answers until the end of the filling in process.
How do I fill in the paper questionnaire?
After receiving, on request, the paper questionnaire, you can start filling it in using a pen with a black or blue ink or paste. Most questions can be answered by ticking the answer (simple answer) or answers (multiple answer) chosen (ticking meaning selection, not exclusion). Where required, please use the attached lists and enter only the corresponding code. Please deliver the answers to the questions that require written answers in a manner that is as readable as possible and only in the space provided. If necessary, please add one or more pages for these answers and specify their codes. After filling in the questionnaire, send the questionnaire to the central project team using the stamped and addressed envelope attached for this purpose (as the sending is prepaid). Before sending the questionnaire, please check if you entered the access code on the first page, in the space provided.
How are my answers used after filling in the questionnaire?
The information provided by the graduates in the survey will be anonymized and collected in a database on a server located at the office of the central project team (after saving all printed questionnaire on electronic support). The data will then be processed statistically, avoiding any reference to any participant or information that could lead to the identification of a person (the instances checked by a single person participating in the survey will not be mentioned). Also, introducing any subjective judgements issued by any university or person will be avoided. The results of the study analysis will be published on the Tracer Study webpage and will be send to all institutional partners - the complete list can be viewed at: http://www.absolvent-univ.ro/about-the-project/parteners.aspx. In addition, each university will receive an anonymized file containing all its graduates’ answers, so that it might perform its own analyses.
Can I receive the results of the study?
On request, we can send you too a report of the study’s results by e-mail. In order to do this, please fill in the last page of the online or printed questionnaire. In any case, we can do this only after the analysis phase is completed, in the second half of 2012.
What is going to happen with the results of the study?
The results of the graduate survey will represent a first detailed analysis of the real performances of the Romanian higher education institutions. The analysis report will thus be a fundamental support in policy making for higher education in general. At the same time, the results of the graduate survey will be used by the universities participating in the study to improve the quality of their study programmes and to adapt their educational offer to the labor market’s requirements. 
Who is carrying out this study?
The innitiator and coordinator of the study is The Executive Agency for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Funding. The project has as institutional partners public or private higher education institutions (http://www.absolvent-univ.ro/home/useful-information/participating-universities.aspx). The project is co-financed through the Sectoral Operational Programme of Human Ressources Development, Priority Axis 2: “Linking life long learning and labor market”.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 



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