QS Stars FAQ:
Q: How long does the audit take?
A: Upon receipt of the contract, QS will initiate the data collection process; the university
will be given a 6 week period to provide QS with the data. The Development Roadmap and
the QS Stars badges will be delivered 8 weeks upon receipt of final data or no later than 14
weeks after data collection is initiated.
Q: The research team of our university are concerned with the time that this audit is going to take as
there is a lot of information to cover. How can QS help with that?
A: Each institution will be assigned an individual analyst who will be available to guide the
institution through the audit process. Prior to the report, analysts will use publically
available data where possible which can reduce the amount of work that is needed to be
done by the university.
Q: Once the audit is completed, do we need to submit data the following year?
A: The audit is valid for three years; therefore institutions only need to submit the data in
the first year.
Q: Does a member of QS visit the campus?
A: Spot checks are in place, where a “mystery visitor” will visit the university campus for
verification. These checks will take place randomly and are not part of the audit process.
Q: If we are unhappy with our result, do we have the right not to publish?
A: Yes, an institution has the right not to publish the results of the audit. QS will honour that
and will not publish the results on any of its sites, this will be seen in the Terms &
Conditions. If an institution chooses to publish its results, QS will publish all the category
results of the audit.
Q: We are not sure how our university will perform in this audit, is there any way we can find out
prior to going ahead with the audit?
A: In many cases, an analyst will be able to provide a “pre-assessment” which can give an
institution an indication of how they may perform in the audit, depending on the availability
of the data. The data is typically gathered from public sources or in some cases taken from
the data submitted for the QS World University Rankings.
Q: Once the audit is complete, what happens next?
A: Once the audit has been completed, an institution will receive the result of the
evaluation. They will be awarded with a badge, which shows the overall star rating in
addition to badges in all the categories that it was evaluated in. An institution will also
receive a comprehensive report outlining the result of the evaluation.
Q: Please let us know what will be done with the data that has been submitted to QS through the QS
A: As stated in the our Terms & Conditions “The intellectual property in the information and
other material provided by the Institution in the course of a QS Stars Audit shall, at all times,
emain vested in the Institution but the Institution hereby grants QS a worldwide royalty free
license to use the same for purposes of its business.”
Q: Our University is not ranked; can we still be evaluated on QS Stars?
A: Yes, a university can still be evaluated in the QS Stars rating system even if they do not
feature in the rankings. This is one of the benefits of QS Stars, as non-ranked institutions can
use the star rating as an opportunity.
Q: What will QS do to promote our results beyond publishing on their own website(s)?
A: QS Star rated universities will have their results appear alongside the QS World University
Rankings results on TopUniversities.com, which received over 10 million visitors in 2011. QS
Stars results will also feature in other regional university rankings and subject rankings
tables. These include: Asian University rankings, Latin American rankings and over 26 subject
rankings. Clients will also have a profile of their institution on the QS Stars section of the site
with a more detailed breakdown of the university’s QS Stars results. Institutions will also be
featured on www.iu.qs. com, the homepage of the QS Intelligence Unit. A popular blog and
news destination for academics and industry leaders, the site received over 115,000 visitors
Q: How can we promote our results?
A: We recommend that you use the badge on all your promotional material and on the front
page of your website. However, in order to increase the awareness, we recommend that you
publish an article about your results in particular for the categories you would like to
highlight on your website, adding the overall badge on the main university page would also
help your institution. You can also add a link to your page on the QS Stars section of
Topuniversities.com http://www.topuniversities.com/qsstars, use social media to publish
your results (Facebook, Twitter…), add the QS Stars badge to your email signature, print the
badge on your business card… You may also contact local media about your results, which
could publish articles about your results. Other suggestions are: printing the badges on
university brochures or other material.
Q: Where can I find examples of how other universities have used their results?
A: Please see below some examples of star rated universities utilising their badge and
exposing their results:
University College Cork
University of Limerick
Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (UCSC)
University of Canterbury
Nanyang Technological University
Universitas Negeri Makassar
Gulf Medical University
Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais
University of Wollongong
Institut Teknologi Sepuluh Nopember
Politeknik Negeri Ujung Pandang
Universitas Kristen Petra