Title Practical Approaches to optimize and implement joint cross-border vocational education and training in crafts and skilled trades
Project Number DE/07/LLP-LdV/TOI/147032
Project Type Transfer of Innovation
Marketing Text Joint cross-border vocational education and training entails long-term stays abroad as a part of the apprenticeship.
Joint cross-border vocational education and training (cross-border IVET) entails long-term stays abroad as a part of the apprenticeship. It is important to establish and embed this stay abroad in the structures of vocational systems as an additional qualification. This step will enhance the appeal of vocational trainings in the crafts and skilled trades sector and foster oppportunities for young skilled workers on the labour market. A noticeable professional benefit occurs only after a stay of several months abroad. In an extended period abroad, the apprentices become part of the team and are integrated into daily routines. They learn about different procedural methods and gain important professional competencies.
The growing Europeanization of markets requires a stronger internationalization of vocational education and training. This is the only way of substantially maintaining the economic power of companies and the employability of employees. However, structured assistance for implementation and adequate assessment instruments are not yet available. As a result, young people undertake only short-term stays abroad lasting just a few weeks, internship included. This adds less value to their professional education. There are also not yet adequate European instruments to evaluate the benefits of such measures.
This project seeks to create conditions allowing the easy and successful use of GVA as an obvious qualification in connection with apprenticeship. Structural pre-conditions and operational implementation are taken into account. To optimize structures, the project will clarify general legal and financial conditions while taking into account networking between and qualification of facilitators at home and abroad and the inclusion of multipliers (opinion leaders). Comprehensible assessment measures for competencies gained during a stay abroad will be clarified and developed if necessary. To optimize the operational implementation of cross-border IVET, practical concepts and tools will be developed and tested.
It is also important to ensure a systematic and continuous academic approach during the stay abroad to prevent learning deficits and to diminish apprentices' fears of receiving lower marks in exams due to their stay abroad. Therefore teaching concepts and contents will be developed using a web-based learning system. Project partners will view themselves as an interface between educational systems and potential users. These partners have experience in the development of qualification concepts and in their general implementation into the educational system. Owing to their practical orientation, they also know about the needs of apprentices and companies and how to implement new qualification offers in actual practice. Some of the project partners are long-standing and reliable partners of HWK Münster who have handled short-term stays abroad for apprentices and who are quite familiar with the challenges faced in mobility actions.
Joint cross-border vocational education and training established and embedded in the structures of educational systems will foster mobility of employees even after apprenticeship. This will facilitate companies' business activities abroad. The project will lay the groundwork for introducing long-term stays abroad during apprenticeship as a standard part of European educational systems.
According to the project goals, three teams were formed and mutually report and discuss their results. In this way, all partners are involved in the development of products but details are not discussed by each partner. The partner FBH does the interdisciplinary evaluation. The teams' topics are the practical implementation of joint cross-border vocational education and training, the fostering of attendant vocational education and training via e-learning, and the concrete definition of and testing of the European Credit Point System for Vocational Education and Training (ECVET).
The project also emphasises a practical orientation for all project products. The partners are advised by different groups of experts, who also help during piloting.
Experts from VET schools: This group is made up of teachers from vocational schools in the Muenster district with experience in e-learning, in linguistic and intercultural preparation and in participation in mobility projects. They assist partners with the adaption of the learning and communication platform and pilot attendant vocational education of apprentices during stays abroad.
Experts from companies: This group consists of business people and trainers with experience either in sending or hosting apprentices who are studying abroad. Members of this group have also taken part in mobility projects and company visits in foreign countries and are interested in the development of GVA. They advise partners about such matters as the development of the learning and experiences diary (the Logbook), the comparison of professional profiles, and the piloting of long-term stays abroad while partners are sending apprentices abroad.
International Advisory Board: Stakeholders from business, politics and science have agreed to advise and guide project partners carrying out this work. The members of the board are also opinion leaders who will help to spread project results and products into different social structures.
Recognition, transparency, certification
Utilization and distribution of results
Open and distance learning
Sectors Professional, Scientific and Technical Activities
open and distance learning
transparency and certification
program or curricula
Products are developed, tested and adapted to be largely practical in orientation. Current plans call in particular for the following products to be developed and tested:
Handbook: "Activities and Advantages of GVA – a Process Description"
Scientific Expertise: "Process for Identifying ECVET Performance Points Modeled on EQR/NQR for Competencies Obtained Abroad That Exceed the Training Framework Plan"
Handbook: "Recommendation on Work with Learning Platforms within the Scope of GVA by Teachers for Teachers at German Vocational Schools“
Logbook for documentation of competencies and know-how gained during stays abroad
Chamber Certificate based on ECVET Expertise and in addition to the EUROPASS Mobility.