This study examines the way in which institutional arrangements for the delivery of IVET have changed in response to shifts in skills demand.
Although these arrangements vary across countries, it is possible to identify common trends over time, such as institutional hybridisation, the blurring of boundaries between IVET and general education. Despite this development, IVET has been able to retain a distinct identity, which is attractive to learners and has the support of key labour market actors. This reflects IVET’s adaptability and resilience in the face of change.
Building on a Europe-wide survey of VET providers and in-depth national case studies, the study delivers a timely update of, and insight into, the continually changing IVET landscape. Results show increasing similarities in how countries configure their IVET systems. This is evident in the broadening of IVET curricula, the prominence given to the work-based learning pathway, as well as the growing importance attached to local and regional autonomy.
ECVET requires qualifications to be described in terms of learning outcomes that will be then defined as units that might translate into credits. Learning outcomes recognised in form of credits may be transferred between education and training institutions, whether in the same country or abroad, and accumulated towards achieving a full or a partial qualification. If the VET system allows it, learning acquired in non-formal and informal settings may be assessed and validated as credits to be used for transfer and accumulation purposes. In this context, ECVET is more likely to reach its full potential if linked to the European qualifications framework (EQF)/national qualifications framework (NQF) developments that support the description of qualifications in terms of learning outcomes, as well as with national arrangements and practices for validating non-formal and informal learning.
This report covers ECVET developments in 38 countries and regions up to September 2013; it is the fourth since 2010, when Cedefop started its regular ECVET analysis in relation to national VET reforms. The deadlines of the ECVET recommendation set 2013 as the year for ECVET’s gradual application to VET qualifications at all levels of the EQF, following more than three years of testing and development.