The Irish Pilot of Carnegie Foundation’s Community Engagement Classification Nears Completion in 2016

The Irish Pilot of Carnegie Foundation’s Community Engagement Classification was initiated in 2013 by Lorraine McIlrath, NUI Galway in partnership with Professor John Saltmarsh at University of Massachusetts and Dr. Elaine Ward at Merrimack College Boston.

This project marked the first time the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning has piloted this highly respected measurement tool outside the US.

Following an introductory workshop on the project to higher education institutions (HEIs) in Ireland, 12 HEIs joined forces and created a critical friendship group to support the pilot and discussions therein.

In July 2016, following an intense institution-wide data gathering process, the 12 institutions submitted their classifications.

Bernie Quillinan, Civic Engagement Champion from the University of Limerick said, “It was a great opportunity to discover and celebrate the good work that is being done at UL, but also a chance to work with colleagues across the sector nationally in a collaborative way.  While we uncovered some fantastic work locally, it was a great moment to have interesting discussions with colleagues across the sector.  It gave us a chance to look at how we might capture and measure our work and develop next steps”. 

One of the main aims of the process is to bring the disparate parts of an institution together in a way that advances a unified community engagement agenda. At the same time it allows for the identification of promising practices that can be shared and built upon.

In November 2016 the Carnegie Classification Peer Review Team will visit Ireland and meet individually with each campus and offer feedback on their submission.  In addition, during this time the 12 institutions will collectively share their experience of the instrument and its appropriateness within an Irish context. 

The pilot has supported by the Higher Educational Authority and Campus Engage at the Irish Universities Association and will inform future measurement agenda.

Participating Irish Institutions


Institute of Technology Carlow

University College Cork

University of Limerick

Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology

Athlone Institute of Technology

Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland

TU4Dublin Alliance

Including DIT, IT Blanchardstown and IT Tallaght

Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin

NUI Galway

Institute of Technology, Tralee



















Further information