In the framework of the PROMOTE project a comprehensive survey was carried out. It aimed at identifying and analysing available IT-supported validation, assessment and evidencing solutions at the interface between formal and informal learning. It was designed to understand the demands of different targets groups and educational sectors with regard to validation of service-related learning outcomes.
The survey focused on the level of knowledge and awareness of the main PROMOTE competences, the European Lifelong Learning-key competences Nos. 5.6.7: „learning to learn“, „sense of Initiative and entrepreneurship“ and „active citizenship“.
The desk research showed that the approach of VINFL (Validation of Informal and Non-formal Learning) is still in an initial stage in most European member states even though a development on awareness and knowledge on the approaches in the last years could be identified. Comprehensive approaches do not exist and innovation and development is triggered by projects in most of the cases.
When it comes to the PROMOTE key competences there is a great awareness about their importance but a lack of suitable instruments and approaches to make them visible and valid. IT solutions to promote and validate key competences are completely missing – up to 2015 only isolated or sectorial approaches could be identified.
The online questionnaire was answered mostly by educational professionals (>70%). The level of awareness about the key competences is relatively high. There is a high familiarity with the key competences and all of them are considered to be very important in most professional and life contexts. While more than 70% consider the validation of key competences as very important (less than 5% consider validation as not important) nearly 40% of the respondents do not know any validation instruments for it. Less than 50% (25-50%) of the respondents are well familiar with European validation instruments, obviously due to the target group 50% with ECVTS while ECVET is only little known.
The interviews revealed that (despite the results of the online questionnaire) there are different understandings and connotations of central terms like “competence”, “entrepreneurship” or the concept of key competences. Here also differences among professions became obvious. However all PROMOTE key competences are considered being very important, ‘sense of initiative and entrepreneurship’ with a higher value for professional development and ‘active citizenship’ for private life. Learning to learn competences were valued most important for all purposes.
The need for validation is almost universally recognized by interviewees. Ways, and particularly tools, to do it are not well-known. There is a strong demand for the diffusion of knowledge on these issues across Europe and all interviewees clearly stated a large support in the field of validation.
PROMOTE Survey summaries in partner languages: