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The European Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning – Update on Recent Developments. ReferNet Meeting 22 January 2009. Overview. EQF: Purpose and Structure Legislative process Implementation National Co-ordination Points EQF Advisory Board EQF Web Platform

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refernet meeting 22 january 2009

The European Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning – Update on Recent Developments

ReferNet Meeting

22 January 2009

slide2

Overview

EQF: Purpose and Structure

Legislative process

Implementation

National Co-ordination Points

EQF Advisory Board

EQF Web Platform

EQF and Bologna Framework

Conclusion

slide3

EQF: Purpose and Structure

Proposal for a European Qualifications Framework launched by the European Commission in September 2006

Recommendation outlines the establishment of an overarching framework to facilitate comparison of qualifications and qualifications levels

in order to promote geographical and labour market mobility

in order to promote Lifelong Learning

The core of EQF consists of 8 qualifications levels described through learning outcomes: knowledge, skill and competence

EQF represents a new approach to European co-operation in the field of qualifications

slide4

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Country A

EQF

Country B

Qualifications

(A)

Qualifications

(B)

slide5

EQF adopted by the European Parliament and Council in December 2007

Formal signing of documentation took place in April 2008

EQF Launch Conference 3-4 June 2008

Implementation process has now commenced

EQF: Legislative process and implementation I

slide6

Implementation of EQF a voluntary process: countries who choose to do so will implement EQF in 2 stages

Referencing national qualifications levels to EQF by 2010

Referencing EQF in all new certificates, diplomas and Europass documents by 2012

EQF: Legislative process and implementation II

slide7

Timeline is to allow for development of national qualifications frameworks in most member states

Ireland, of course, has a Framework and will, along with the UK, move towards speedier implementation

Referencing processes well advanced in Scotland, and England/Northern Ireland

Commencing now in Wales

EQF: Legislative process and implementation III

slide8

Implementation: National Co-ordination Points

NCPs are to be appointed by member states to support and guide relationship between national qualifications systems and EQF

Qualifications Authority designated as Irish NCP

Will be responsible for:

co-ordinating referencing of Irish Framework levels to EQF, using a transparent methodology

providing access to information and guidance to stakeholders on referencing process

promoting participation of stakeholders in referencing process

slide9

Implementation at European level will be overseen by EQF Advisory Group – first meeting held 13/14 March 2008

Composed of representatives of member states and involving social partners and other stakeholders as appropriate

Qualifications Authority representing Ireland on EQF Advisory Group

Implementation: EQF Advisory Group I

slide10

Advisory Group responsible for:

Providing overall coherence and promoting transparency of the process of relating qualifications systems to EQF

Sub-group has produced criteria and procedures for referencing national frameworks and qualifications levels to EQF (Qualifications Authority participated)

Other issues/policy areas being explored include:

quality assurance, particularly in relation to certification

how sectoral qualifications might relate to EQF;

the external dimension of EQF (relationship with other geographical areas)

the EQF Web platform

Implementation: EQF Advisory Group II

slide11

Implementation: EQF Web platform

Prototype web platform under development

Issue around whether it will serve primarily as a technical communication tool for the National Coordination Points or as an information point for European citizens on EQF matters more generally

Advisory Group is establishing a Steering Committee to look at this issue and procedures and protocols for populating the web platform – Qualifications Authority participating

It appears web platform will, initially, provide information on types of qualifications and on the referencing processes of national systems to EQF

slide20

Similarities and overlaps

Overarching frameworks

Cover broad scope of learning

Designed to improve transparency

Support Lifelong Learning and mobility

Associated with quality assurance

Employ concept of ‘best fit’ for relating national qualification levels to the overarching framework

Developed out of different political processes: Bologna and Copenhagen/Lisbon

Recognised at an early stage that two Frameworks needed to be compatible

EQF and Bologna Framework I

slide21

Compatibility asserted in European Commission’s recommendation on EQF

Also through co-operation between Council of Europe and Commission through EQF Advisory Board and Bologna Framework Co-ordination Group

Clear cross-referencing exists at Levels 5-8 (EQF) and cycles 1-3 (Bologna Framework)

EQF and Bologna Framework II

slide23

Ireland has verified the compatibility of its National Framework to the Bologna Framework (2006)

Referencing of NFQ levels 6-10 to EQF levels 5-8 may be deemed to be completed on the basis of

this verification

and

the assertion of compatibility in the EQF Recommendation of EQF levels 5-8 to the Bologna Framework Short-cycle and Cycles 1-3

Referencing Process: technical comparison of the NFQ and EQF level descriptors will be undertaken across all levels

EQF and Bologna Framework IV

slide25

Irish Referencing process now commencing

Will conduct process using EQF Advisory Group criteria and procedures

Communications with stakeholders to be significant part of process

Aim to complete referencing process by Summer 2009

Conclusion

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