What Do Universities' Virtual Faces Tell at a Glance? A Visual and Textual Analysis of Turkish Universities' Official Homepages

Emil S.

Yuksekogretim Dergisi, vol.10, pp.51-60, 2020 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 10
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.2399/yod.19.009
  • Journal Name: Yuksekogretim Dergisi
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index
  • Page Numbers: pp.51-60
  • Keywords: Institutional isomorphism, institutional websites, Turkish higher education, university representation, visual content analysis


Turkish higher education has been going through a quantitative transformation since 1990s, which has raised a debate on the quality of the HEIs. The quantitative increase is a crucial step for more access to higher education and can be seen as the prerequisite of qualitative growth, yet is is necessary to examine how the newly-established universities in particular function around their vision and mission. Institutional culture and shared values are the ways the universities display their differences; and with communication technologies, their official Internet websites have becomeone of the most effective means of showing their distinct institutional identities. This study examined the representation of all the Turkish universities in their official Internet homepages in regard to research, education, and community service. The homepages of 186 public and foundation universities were analyzed through visual content analysis. It was found that there is a high level of institutional similarity among these universities; research is represented with some specific activities while education and community service are displayed with a very limited number of activities. The visual analysis revealed eight themes and three university functions, and yielded some significant findings on Turkish universities' virtual faces.