In the quest for more and better lifelong learning, there is a growing awareness that qualifications systems must play a part. Some countries have started to realise that isolated developments in qualifications standards lead to uncoordinated, piecemeal systems. After reviewing the policies and practice in fifteen countries, the authors present nine broad policy responses to the lifelong learning agenda that countries have adopted and that relate directly to their national qualifications system. They also identify twenty mechanisms, or concrete linkages, between national qualifications systems and lifelong learning goals. The overall aim of this book is to provide these mechanisms as a tool for governments to use in reviewing their policy responses to lifelong learning. Evidence suggests that some mechanisms, such as those linked to credit transfer, recognition of prior learning, qualifications frameworks and stakeholder involvement, are especially powerful in promoting lifelong learning.
Table of contents:
Executive Summary Chapter 1. Scope and Structure of the Study -The Primacy of Lifelong Learning -Assumptions and Existing Evidence -A Consensual View of Terminology -Effects on Lifelong Learning -The Meaning and Structure of Mechanisms and Policy Respnses -The Book's Structure -Annex 1.A1. Process and Thematic Groups -Annex 1.A2. Components of a Qualifications System Chapter 2. Policy Responses to Improve National Qualifications Systems -Reasons for Developing Lifelong Learning -Qualifications Systems: Drivers for Change -Responses to Pressures for Changes in Qualifications Systems -Issues Related to Using Qualifications Systems as a Tool for Reform -In Short, Many Countries Face the Same Kind of Barriers Chapter 3. Do the Numbers Tell a Story? Quantitative Evidence about the Impact of Qualifications Systems on Learning -The Quantitative Background for Linking National Qualifications Systems and Lifelong Learning -An Attempt at Correlation -Building a Quantitative Evidence Base -Annex 3.A1. Assumption, Caveats and Technical Notes -Annex 3.A2. Additional Tables -Annex 3.A3. International Adult Literacy Survey Background Questionnaire Chapter 4. The Interaction between Stakeholders and Qualifications Systems: Identifying Mechanisms -Stakeholders and Country Context -Motivating Individual to Learn -Encouraging Employers to Use and Support Learning -The Qualifications System and he Role of Learnign and Qualifications Providers -Mechanisms Affecting Behaviour Chapter 5. Putting Mechanisms to Work Supporting Policy Responses -Linking Quantitative and Qualitative Evidence -Policy Responses and Mechanisms -Power and Versatility of the Mechanism -Change Mechanisms Chapter 6. Using Mechanisms to Review Policy Responses -A Positive Influence on Lifelong Learning -Mechanisms in Strategic Combination -Examples of Policy Review - Addressing Two Problems -The Way Forward -Annex A. Summary Reports of the Threee Thematic Groups --Thematic Group 1. The Developemtn and Use of Qualifications Frameworks as a Means of Reforming and Managing Qualifications Systems --Thematic Group 2. Standards and Quality Assurance in Qualifications with Specail Refernece to the Recognition of Non-Formal and Informal Training. --Thematic Group 3. Co-operation of Different Institutions and Stakeholders of the Qualifications Systems -Annex B. Education and Training System: How They Relate to Qualifications -Annex C. List of the Fifteen Countries that Prepared a Background Report and National Co-oerdinators -Annex D. Countries Participating in Thematic Groups and Co-ordination -Annex E. List of Acronyms -Annex F. Three-Letter Country Codes Used in the Tables and Figures