Title Enhanced vocational opportunities, knowledge and education
Project Number 2011-1-NO1-LEO05-03274
Project Type Transfer of Innovation
The impact of this project for youngsters at risk or school leavers is that they by participating in the evaluation process have a direct and empowering voice on improving the quality of the career guidance and the network of practitioners. Because of improving quality of career guidance and network more youngsters than earlier will be kept in school or come back to school or will be guided to work (with dual learning).
The guidance practitioners and the users of guidance services that are commissioning an objective system of quality control will enjoy better services provided. The project’s impact on operators can be divided into:
- those who should provide services, and is correlated with the correct or incorrect perception that may have of their own professional performance;
- managers of career services that have tools to evaluate the performance of their colleagues and programs, professional development activities or development of skills.
The EC launched an action plan to help EU 27 ensure that 90% of young people leave school with upper secondary degrees by 2020. Today unveiled that almost 14.4% of all 18 to 24 year olds in Europe leave school with a lower secondary degree or less which is hampering EU's goals of smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. "Europe cannot afford that so many young people who have the potential to contribute to our societies and our economies are left behind. We need to realise the potential of all young people in Europe in order to recover from the crisis," said President Barroso (31/01/2011).
The EVOKE (Enhanced vocational opportunities, knowledge and education) project ultimately aims to improve the quality assurance system for career guidance by transferring and adapting the model of combined innovative parts: the methodology for evaluating the effectiveness of services and the method of social return on investment for the drop-outs and persons at risk of dropping out in IVT.
The proposal is based on the transfer of two highly successful EU and Nordic Council of Ministers' projects, one of which (“Evaluation of vocational guidance service effectiveness”) a systematic evaluation tool (SAT & CFF) for career guidance effectiveness has been developed, and the knowledge about using such potentials will be transported, having the base for adequately evaluating the provided guidance services and the second of which "SROI-measure and monitor technique” has been working to capture the effects of programme to integrate immigrants and other target groups into the labour market. The project took care of effective use of capital in labour market skills of target group.
The Quality Assurance Model (QAM) is thought to be of relevance and interest, not only to guidance practitioners but to managers, social partners, policy makers etc seeking to implement quality solutions in career guidance or to adapt them as part in IVT.
Participants of project will receive QAM, the benefits of which include: a) the content where up-to-date results of quality enhancement/assurance in the field are structured into guidance service (evidence-based practice), b) the content will be a sustainable controlling and a replicable control and a measuring to be return of public investment into career guidance (outcomes and cost-effectiveness), c) benefits of use model to describe outcomes / impact e.g. return of public investment into guidance, completion rates for trainee, etc in IVT.
An pilot phase will be followed by a testing of QAM with real guidance practitioners and youngsters and an evaluation process which will feedback into the fine-tuning of the constituent content.
The work will be carried out by a consortium of five partners led by the Hadsel videregående skole / OPUS Hadsel all of whom have extensive experience in both career guidance and participation in EU-funded projects. The proposal includes extensive plans for dissemination and exploitation of the project results.
In the application for this project we had several goals and objectives.
Summarized one can say that we set out to combine and emerge two products. These products should then, in a revised version, be a part of quality asurrance model for carrer guidance.
All the initial objectives were met.
Quality assurance model (QAM) for career guidance was prepared, transferred and tested during the pilot stage. Test included almost 150 drop-outs and persons at risk of dropping out in the partners countries.
During the project lifetime the project objectives were achieved:
1. WP2 Analysis was created;
2. The Quality Assurance Model (QAM) was developed as to the needs of local scenarios;
3. The QAM was transferred to the Partners countries;
4. The QAM was tested during the pilot each Partner environment;
5. The corrected final version of QAM was prepared;
6. External evaluation of outcomes as part of recommendation have been done;
7. Although dissemination is done during the whole project, the exploitation plan is prepared for the final results transfer to partners environment as including IVT and career guidance providers, target groups, stakeholders and potential users.
The project processes and results were evaluated by the project team and external evaluator.
At this final stage of EVOKE we can say that the project had a good impact on the main stakeholders who are the representatives of VET, PES and the vocational guidance counsellors – especially those involved in the pilot phase. They were interested in the QAM process and they believe in the importance of systematically evaluate the effectiveness of the vocational guidance service with the view of diminish the dropout rate.
This pilot experience has demonstrated that building a network, and engaging your stakeholders therein, for the prevention of dropouts is a strategy which accounts for better decision-making, higher effectiveness of the activities carried out and larger reach of the work being done in this regard. The SROI analysis has clear and easily recognizable benefits for any organization, which are perfectly applicable to career guidance-related projects. For example, the SROI analysis provides quantitative and qualitative information which enables the organization to effectively communicate with its stakeholders.
This project about counseling and SROI has in fact dealt with a model and methods of improvement of quality. The SROI-method can be used in any field. In this project it was used for counseling. But if one has learnt the method by using it in one field, its not too difficult to use it in others.
The project has addressed two national priorities:
- Increase completion rates for apprentice, pupil, trainee, etc in IVT;
- Increase quality in career guidance.
By improving the counseling, the dropout rate will be influenced in a positive way. The main thing is to be able to "put the youngster on the right track" as quickly as possible. And to make as few wrong choices about education as possible. Therefore we think that the EVOKE project has the protential to contribute to these priorities. And ceratinly if the ideas in this project would be conisidered interesting for the national authorities.
The EVOKE project outcomes also directly correlate with EQAVET work programme 2013-2015:
"At a time of economic crisis, high quality vocational education and training (VET) have a key role to play in helping individual countries and the European Union to address the challenges of unemployment and the skills mismatch and to return to sustainable growth and employment. Countries participating in the European Quality Assurance in Vocational Education and Training (EQAVET) network have worked consistently to support the development of robust quality assurance approaches in order to ensure the quality, relevance and attractiveness of VET as a learning and career pathway for young people and for those at work seeking up-skilling."
Also VET institutions are willing to be involved in the outcomes of the EVOKE project and in the exploitation of the QAM.
The network of partners was at the same time both very strong and competent as well as from different parts of the VET-system. Thereby all partners have contributed to the achievements. EVOKE project was structured into 8 Work Packages (WPs), each of which focuses on a specific area of responsibilities and expertise. Individual Work Packages has been led by different partners with all participants striving to enhance and progress the each stage of the project. Equipped with the experiences and the results of the previous projects related with CQT and SROI and own institutional experience the WPs consisted of various partners focusing on certain aspects of the project, each of which requires specific know-how. Though individual functions are coordinated by particular Work Package leaders, close cooperation between all WPs was important to the success of the project.
The management by Opus Hadsel ensured the smooth realisation of goals as well as overall organisation of the project consortium – not only at strategic but also at administrative level. Therefore, precise administrative supervision of the project’s tasks, financial resources and communication was crucial to achieve the project’s goals. The Project Management’s responsibility lies in providing a single point of contact for the NA as well as rendering coordination for the project. The Management (WP1) also includes overseeing and controlling the project consortium budget and ensuring the desired quality of the project deliverables. While monitoring the project’s progress and handling change management when necessary, the Project Management also reported on progress or changes to the EVOKE Steering Committee members.
Administrative and Support Service Activities
procedure for the analysis and prognosis of the vocational training requirement
The main result of EVOKE is the QAM ( Quality Assurance Model.
It is being described in the main report/document of results : Fine tuning.Description of QAM model / methodology.
This is a result from all the different work packages and finetuning of all results. In this document with attacments we discribe the QAM-model for career guidance. In many ways we can say that this document is the most important one. It is written on the basis of the two innovations brought into the project, the testing of them and in the end; the finetuning.
Description of QAM:
1st. Institutional and policy framework
To locate your organization in the context of the IVT-system, and in vocational guidance, and provide a background on the policy context regarding dropouts, whether on a national, regional or local level
2nd. Identify stakeholders
To recognize your stakeholders, whether national, regional or local, which fall under the context described in Step 1
3rd. Involve stakeholders
To engage those stakeholders previously identified to build a network in order to put forward certain activities which, in turn, aim at reducing dropout rates – and related issues, such as unemployment – in your territory, whether local, regional or national.
4th. Build a network
To determine the interdependencies and strengthen the linkages between the selected stakeholders. This includes know-how sharing among the stakeholders, instructing those stakeholders in the use of the SROI and the CQT and assessing potential bottlenecks.
5th. Draw an action plan
To gather all the information derived from the previous steps and narrow it down into a guide of those activities to be carried out by your network for the implementation of the QAM.
6th. Execute the action plan
To draw the Impact Map of SROI : how the activities you develop use certain resources to deliver outputs which result in outcomes for the stakeholders; and to carry out the CQT tests.
7th. Analyzing the QAM
Step 7 comprises breaking-down and examining the results of the CQT tests and analyzing the SROI. The result will be a sum of quantitative and qualitative information on the activities which are examined that build the grounds for systematic improvement in career guidance for the reduction of dropout rates .
8th. Reporting and reviewing.
To inform the stakeholders and the public about the results of the QAM. To offer critical reading of the results.