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Community-University Collaborations: Exploring Models, Sharing Good Practice The example of the Vab project Dr Bénédicte Halba, Iriv, Paris, France. Grey College, Durham University 9th and 10th September 2010. VAB–Valuing experience Beyond university. a Leonardo da Vinci project (2009-2011)

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Community-University Collaborations: Exploring Models, Sharing Good Practice

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Community-University Collaborations:

Exploring Models, Sharing Good Practice

The example of the Vab project

Dr Bénédicte Halba, Iriv, Paris, France.

Grey College, Durham University

9th and 10th September 2010

VAB–Valuing experience Beyond university

a Leonardo da Vinci project (2009-2011)

initiated by the Ueve together with Iriv (France)

In 5 countries

October 2009- September 2011


  • A crucial issue in Europe, the professional integration of youngsters

  • The Bologna process and the reform of the University

  • The VAB project and the lifelong learning perspective

The general presentation of the VAB project

The special context of the Leonardo da Vinci programme

From assessing a voluntary experience to valuing experience beyond University

The benefits for the University

An example of Community-University Collaboration

Enhancing professional integration

  • Unemployment of youngsters a crucial problem

  • Bridging the gap between University and the labour market

  • Formal, non formal and informal learning

  • The VAB, a new step towards skills and competences

  • A tool and method for valuing non formal and informal learning

An e-portfolio and an e-training

  • A pedagogical tool, a portfolio

  • A digital development, an e-portfolio

  • A training course for the University teachers

  • An experimentation of the e-portfolio and e-training

  • Networks of University teachers around Europe

  • Exchanging good practices in the field of training for teachers and professional support for students

The lifelong learning perspective

  • The knowledge society and economy

  • education and training policy, key issue

  • Lifelong learning : a key to growth as well as a chance to participate fully in society

  • A new strategic framework (LLL) with 4 long term strategic objectives

  • 4 sub-programmes : Comenius, Erasmus, LdV, Grundtvig

The Copenhagen process

  • Validating non formal and informal learning

  • Two approaches : formative and summative

  • Formative approach : identification of knowledge, skills and wider competences

  • Summative approach : link to the standards used in the national qualifications

  • VAB project integrates both approaches

The basis of the VAB : the AVE

  • Assessing Voluntary Experience (AVE), LdV, 2003-2006, 7 countries

  • Main public : youngsters, parents, long term unemployed people

  • A first attempt to propose a tool and method, a portfolio, to identify and value skills and competences developed thanks to volunteering

  • Youth volunteering : an opportunity for youngsters for social and professional integration

The holistic approach of the VAB

  • Personal, social and professional experiences are taken into account

  • 4 types of activities will be assessed

  • Sport, culture and art activities

  • Involvement in associations and actice citizenship

  • Professional activities

  • Transnational/mobility activities

The benefits for the University- teachers

  • Taking into account a learning acquired outside the University

  • non formal and informal learning, a new perspective

  • A global evaluation of the students

  • Using an interactive tool and method with the support of students and the Community

  • University teaches, mediators between University and the Community

The benefits for the University- students

  • Personal, social and professional background of the students have to be taken into account to prepare their future

  • Life is no more linear, studies are not separate from “real life”

  • Students have to integrate this mobility together with a circular approach

  • The portfolio approach : a way to make the link between all the aspects of life

  • Learning is a lifelong process

The VAB project, changing the perspective

University is not the only place where knowledge, skills and competences may be acquired

The official recognition of non formal and informal learning is a step forward to bridge the gap between University and Community

University is not a world apart

The VAB project, a new approach

It is very much labour market oriented as it is a LdV project

Social integration is very linked to professional integration

The portfolio can be used in many ways : personal or professional

It is based on self-evaluation and should enhance self-esteem and self-confidence

An experience for the Community is as valued as a diploma

The VAB project based on the experience

The diploma is no more the only key to enter social or professional life

Link between human capital and social capital

The social capital is a key issue to build and maintain democracy (cf Putnam, “Bowling alone”)

Benefits for the Community : students, youngsters, ready to be involved in many social activities

Contribution of the University : valuing and enhancing this social experience

University is also the place to become a citizen


Close collaboration between University and Community is a key issue for preparing the future of the students , in any field

The VAB project is focussed on professional integration but it also proposes a holistic approach valuing all the areas of an individual

The social experience may appear as the most appropiate field for community-University collaboration but even the other ones are relevant

Valuing skills and competences is at the heart of the VAB : to become workers and active citizens

Useful Contacts


  • Ueve –

  • iriv –

  • die Berater –

  • HOU –

  • University of Limerick–

  • University of Ljubljana –

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