The 4th Validation of Prior Learning Biennale will take place on 19–20 May 2022, in Reykjavik, Iceland. It is hosted by the Education and Training Service Centre (ETSC), in collaboration with the Nordic Network for Adult Learning, the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP) and the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL).
The 4th VPL Biennale – entitled Building a common ground – Validation of prior learning for integrated approaches in lifelong learning – will focus on how validation processes can become an integral part of policies and services to support lifelong learning. Participants will be able to explore various validation processes and support measures, and learn from the results achieved around the world.
Validation is about making visible and giving value to all learning, irrespective of where or when it was acquired. Moreover, it plays a role in widening participation in learning, work, active citizenship and democratization and contributes to supporting individual transitions due to changes in the labour market, society or personal life. As such, the conference provides an opportunity for sharing knowledge and ideas for validation development, learning from each other’s experiences and creating viable solutions together.
At the event, UIL will showcase its work on the recognition, validation and accreditation (RVA) of prior learning specifically in the context of ongoing efforts to support migrants and refugees. One of the major obstacles that refugees and migrants face in terms of education and skills development is that their prior learning and competences are not always recognized within their new national contexts. A lack of RVA instruments results in displaced populations having limited access to further studies and poor employment opportunities that do not correspond to their qualification levels and areas of expertise. The RVA of formal, non-formal and informal learning outcomes therefore constitutes a major step forward in enabling refugees and migrants to continue their education, access flexible learning pathways and find decent work. UIL’s work is focused on understanding the challenges countries are facing in order to best equip them to set up efficient systems for RVA. In this context, UIL will also be hosting an expert workshop at the VPL biennale in which participants will be able to provide feedback on draft guidelines for national implementation of RVA to best support migrants and refugees.