Other European Transparency Instruments

ECVET is linked to several other European transparency and recognition instruments, the main ones being the European quality assurance reference framework in VET (EQAVET), the European Qualifications Framework (EQF), and validation of non-formal and informal learning.

European quality reference framework in VET (EQAVET)

EQAVET is an instrument designed to encourage labour mobility by helping countries to promote and monitor improvements in their VET systems. Improving the quality of VET systems should result in an increased mutual trust between countries, facilitating the recognition of learning outcomes acquired by learners in different contexts.

The EQAVET Recommendation has been adopted by the European Parliament and the Council in 2009. A quality assurance and improvement cycle based on a selection of quality criteria, descriptors and indicators is provided in annex of the recommendation. More information on EQAVET can be found on the EQAVET website.

European Qualifications Framework (EQF)

The EQF acts as a translation instrument to make national qualifications more readable across Europe, promoting workers' and learners' mobility between countries and facilitating their lifelong learning by helping comparison between qualifications systems and frameworks in Europe. It is composed of eight reference levels described in terms of learning outcomes to allow any national qualifications systems, national qualifications frameworks (NQFs) and qualifications in Europe to relate to the EQF levels.

The EQF Recommendation (update) was adopted by the European Parliament and the Council in 2008. On 22 May 2017, the European Parliament adopted the revised Council recommendation on the European Qualifications Framework for lifelong learning. The revised version repeals the initial EQF Recommendation from 23 April 2008. More information on the EQF can be found on the European Commission website.

Validation of non-formal and informal learning

Countries around Europe are increasingly emphasising the need to take account of the full range of an individual’s knowledge, skills and competences – and not only those acquired at schools, universities or other formal education and training institutions – but also at work, at home or in voluntary activities.. Recognising all forms of learning is therefore a priority of EU action in education and training.

The Council adopted a recommendation on the validation of non-formal and informal learning in 2012 to encourage Member States to put in place a validation process by 2018. For more information, you can visit Cedefop’s website.