On 15 and 16 March 2018, the European Commission will hold a conference on ‘The European Qualifications Framework: supporting learning, work and cross-border mobility.’ The conference marks the 10th anniversary of the launch of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF).
In 2008, the European Council and the Parliament of the European Union had defined recommendations for establishing the EQF for lifelong learning. This can be regarded as the first step towards more prominently promoting non-formal and informal learning both within European policies and at national levels. The focus on learning outcomes in the EQF underpins the idea that qualifications should reflect knowledge, skills and competences instead of the learning pathway.
Beyond Europe, other regions such as Southeast Asia, the Caribbean, the Gulf region, the Pacific, Southern Africa and the Commonwealth States are also working towards strengthening transnational cooperation on their National Qualifications Frameworks (NQFs). These efforts are highlighted in the recently published Global Inventory of Regional and National Qualifications Frameworks, Volume I and Global Inventory of Regional and National Qualifications Frameworks, Volume II.
The UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL) supports UNESCO Member States in the use of NQFs as reference points and sources of quality assurance for processes of recognising, validating and accrediting non-formal and informal learning. Existing NQFs have already proven to be important instruments for widening access and opening up pathways to learning.
At this conference, UIL will be represented by Ms Madhu Singh, Senior Programme Specialist at the Institute.