Studying AbRoad Pilot
About The Pilot

The Studying Abroad pilot of the DE4A project aims at demonstrating in practice the benefits of realizing across borders the principles of once only and digital-by-default for different stakeholders of the European Higher Education Area, in particular students, universities, and ministries of higher education. By piloting three use cases it aims to demonstrate the optimal process/procedure for students from the three participating Member States (Portugal, Slovenia, and Spain) for registration to higher education and subsequently applying for a student grant as well as for studies recognition in another country.

Key-advantages

Students can use their national eIDs to access foreign higher education services and have their evidence required by the service, such as their higher education diplomas, transferred electronically from a trusted source in their home country. Having this opportunity, the students will no longer need to look for the evidence and fill the required application forms by themselves. On the other hand, the service providers will increase the security level of their services and reduce administration burden by relying on structured electronic evidence from trustworthy sources.

See how verifiable credentials are being used in the Studying Abroad Pilot:

Scope of the pilot

The Studying Abroad pilot implements three cross-border higher education procedures:

Application to higher education

The first use case focuses on the process of applying for admission to higher education institutions in another country, specifically for master studies (2nd Bologna degree). All candidates wishing to enrol in a foreign university must apply online through a procedure portal provided by the university or the respective Ministry of education. Today, candidates have to manually enter the required data in the application form on the portal and provide the required supporting evidence themselves, such as identity details and diplomas.

 

The DE4A project helps applicants by providing an infrastructure that enables the direct exchange of evidence between competent authorities in EU Member States. Through this infrastructure, applicants can request that their evidence (e.g. the diploma for the 1st Bologna degree) is automatically sent to the procedure portal from a trusted source in their home country or countries where they previously studied. Students retain full control over which evidence is sent across borders and which is not, by explicitly agreeing to each transfer of evidence.

Currently, the following application service is available for piloting:

University Jaume I, Spain: https://preinscripcio.uji.es/

 

Applying for a study grant

The second use case focuses on the process of applying for a study grant abroad. Today, students wishing to apply for a study grant at the foreign university, Ministry of education or other institutions have to manually fill out an online application form in the procedure portal and provide the required supporting evidence themselves, such as identity details, university diplomas or proofs of their financial status.

 

The DE4A project helps the applicants by providing an infrastructure that enables the direct exchange of evidence between competent authorities in EU Member States. Through this infrastructure, the applicants can request that their evidence (e.g. university diploma) is automatically sent to the procedure portal from a trusted source in their home country. Students retain full control over which evidence is sent across borders and which is not, by explicitly agreeing to each transfer of evidence.

 

Currently, the following grant application service is available for piloting:

Jozef Stefan Institute, Slovenia: https://grants.e5.ijs.si 

Diploma recognition

The third use case focuses on the diploma recognition in another country to facilitate the use of such information by government and other sectors. This use case involves the self-sovereign identity approach. Students can transfer their diplomas in the form of verifiable credentials from trusted data sources, such as universities where they have previously studied or ministries of education, and store them in digital wallets on their mobile phones.

 

In another Member State, they can then present these credentials in the form of a verifiable presentation to a competent authority and request their diplomas to be recognized in that State.

The list of diploma recognition services available for piloting will become available in December 2021.

Timeline

The pilot will be operational in early 2022. A phased availability of services is planned where more portals and services will be added during 2022, so we recommend that you come back to visit the  pilot micro-site to check the new available portals.

Audience

In this phase, the pilot is open to students from University Jaume I in Spain, University of Lisbon in Portugal, and any higher education institution in Slovenia. These are the students whose diplomas are stored at one of the competent authorities involved in DE4A and can be made available in an electronic format through the DE4A evidence exchange system. The participating students should have valid eIDs.

More information

You can find more general information about the Digital Europe for All program here.

Participating Guidelines

Application to higher education

Here, the main steps of the process are briefly summarised:

  • A student accesses an eProcedure portal to apply for higher education studies.

  • The student is asked to authenticate using a legally recognised electronic identity (eIDAS identity).

  • After successful authentication, the student is presented with a list of study programmes. The student selects the desired programme.

  • The student is asked to provide higher education diploma (evidence), which is mandatory for the application.

  • The student explicitly requests that the DE4A Once-only Principle Technical System is used to retrieve the diploma from an authentic source in his/her home country.

  • The student is directed to the Evidence portal.

  • The student authenticates using a legally recognised electronic identity.

  • The student previews a diploma and gives consent for sending it across border to the application service.

  • The student is redirected back to the eProcedure portal.

  • The student enters missing information in the form, e.g. email address, contact phone number, and address for notice, and submits the application.

  • The application is validated and the acknowledgment receipt provided.

Service guidelines:

Applying for a study grant

Here, the main steps of the process are briefly summarised:

  • A student accesses an eProcedure portal to apply for study grant.

  • The student is asked to authenticate using a legally recognized electronic identity (eIDAS identity).

  • The student is asked to provide higher education diploma (evidence), which is mandatory for the application.

  • The student explicitly requests that the DE4A Once-only Principle Technical System is used to retrieve the diploma from an authentic source in his/her home country.

  • The student is directed to the Evidence portal.

  • The student authenticates again using a legally recognized electronic identity.

  • The student previews the diploma and gives consent for sending it across border to the application service.

  • The student is redirected back to the eProcedure portal.

  • The student enters missing information in the form, e.g. email address and contact phone number, and submits the grant application.

  • The application is validated and the application and acknowledgment receipt provided.

Service guidelines:

Guidelines for the Study grant application service at Jozef Stefan Institute, Slovenia can be found here in PDF.

A video recording of the service can be found below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Diploma recognition

Here, the main steps of the procedure are briefly summarized.

Obtaining diploma evidence in the form of a verifiable credential

  • A student accesses an Evidence portal to request diploma evidence in the form of a verifiable credential.

  • The student is asked to authenticate using a legally recognized electronic identity (eIDAS identity).

  • After successful authentication the student requests a diploma evidence.

  • If the student's mobile wallet is not yet connected with the Evidence portal the student requests a new QR code to be generated.

  • The student scans the displayed QR code by a mobile phone and accepts a connection invitation.

  • Once the connection is established, the student requests the portal to send the diploma evidence as a verifiable credential to the mobile wallet.

  • The student previews the credential and accepts its offer.

  • The student accepts the received credential and stores it in the mobile wallet for future use.

 

Presenting diploma evidence in the form of a verifiable presentation

  • A student accesses an eProcedure portal  to request diploma recognition.

  • The student is asked to authenticate  using a legally recognized electronic identity (eIDAS identity).

  • After successful authentication the student requests to submit diploma evidence in the form of a verifiable presentation (VP).

  • If the student's mobile wallet is not yet connected with the eProcedure portal the student requests a new QR code to be generated.

  • The student scans the displayed QR code by a mobile phone and accepts a connection invitation.

  • Once the connection is established, the student requests the portal to send a request for a VP submission.

  • The student accepts the received request on a mobile phone by selecting the requested VP conforming to the request format and submitting it as a response to the portal.

  • Validity information of the submitted VP is displayed to the student.

Feedback Forms

Please, make sure that you have accessed and used one of the DE4A higher education procedures before filling the feedback form.

 

The feedback form for Students is filled in from this page. Click here to start.

 

Thank you for your time

Frequently Asked Questions

When can I start using any one of the pilots?


The pilots will be live from October 1st 2021 till January 31st 2022. A phased availability of services is planned where more portals and services will be added until the end of 2021, so we recommend that you come back to visit the respective pilot micro-sites to check the new available portals.




Are the pilots easy to use and navigate for any user?


The pilots have been designed and developed in a way that any student can navigate easily.




What is the goal of the Studying Abroad pilot?


The Studying Abroad pilot of the aims at demonstrating in practice the benefits for different European Higher Education Area stakeholders of realizing across borders the principles of once only and digital-by-default.




What services does the Studying Abroad Pilot offer to users?


This pilot offers cross-border services for higher education students. These services include application to master studies (2nd Bologna degree), application for study grants, and diploma recognition.




Which countries participate in the Studying Abroad Pilot?


Portugal, Slovenia, Spain




Who can participate in the Studying Abroad pilot?


At this stage, the pilot is open to the students from University Jaume I in Spain, University of Lisbon in Portugal, and any higher education institution in Slovenia. These are the students whose diplomas are stored at one of the competent authorities involved in DE4A. The participating students must have valid eIDs. The users of the diploma recognition service must also install a DE4A mobile wallet on their Android mobile phones.




Where can I express my opinion about the pilot?


There is a simple feedback form on this page. You can use this form to answer questions and comment on the pilot and the services you are using.




If I do not agree to send one of the evidences across border, what should I do?


The evidence being transferred is at the request of the portal you are trying to access. You are still in control of your data. If you don’t agree to send one of the evidences at Preview then uncheck the box authorizing to send this evidence. Or else cancel the transaction.




DE4A Pilot Privacy Policy - Details


The services and applications provided as a part of this pilot have been set up in the context of the DE4A piloting project. Please see this link . This project is funded by the European Commission. It aims to explore ways to implement and provide once-only e-government services, particularly in the context of the Single Digital Gateway. The objective is to ensure that e-government services work more efficiently, securely, and smoothly. ​To see the detailed Privacy Policy see this link.




DE4A piloting disclaimer for Studying Abroad Pilot


Legal disclaimer The services and applications provided as a part of this pilot have been set up in the context of the DE4A piloting project (https://www.de4a.eu/about-project). This project is funded by the European Commission. It aims to explore ways to implement and provide once-only e-government services, particularly in the context of the Single Digital Gateway. The objective is to ensure that e-government services work more efficiently, securely and smoothly. The services and applications are designed to be fully functional and operational, and will produce binding legal effects for you, and for any persons or organisations that that you interact with. Therefore, please use the services and applications only if you indeed aim to complete a legally valid procedure. The services and applications are created with the highest level of diligence, to ensure that they work in a secure and problem free manner. None the less, since they are operated as a part of a pilot, your use of the services and applications is proactively monitored and analysed in order to detect any problems. We may therefore use any contact information you provide to contact you in case of any problems. The pilot projects are principally managed by the organisations identified on the DE4A project page, who will act as data controllers in relation to your data. For any questions in relation to the pilots or to your data, please contact them directly, or alternatively contact the DE4A project via info@de4a.eu.




Where can I get a valid eID?


Students can use the following valid national eIDs:

  • Portugal: Chave Móvel Digital or Cartão de Cidadão (https://www.autenticacao.gov.pt)
  • Slovenia: SI-PASS or smsPASS (https://www.si-trust.gov.si/sl/si-pass/)
  • Spain: Documento Nacional de Identidad electrónico (DNIe)




Where can I get a DE4A mobile wallet?


A DE4A mobile wallet for an Android mobile phone and the installation instructions can be downloaded here.