CASE STUDY SUMMARY: AUSTRIA
Number CS 1 SUMMARY
CS1 You have competences : a pilot project overlapping AE and VET sectors âYou have competencesâ, province of Upper Austria : this CS presents a case of partnership between an Adult Education forum, training institutions (Chambers) social partners and provincial government, and of coordination with federal agencies and a ministry. The aim was to test a model of VNFL-INFL for specific vocational qualifications for people with low qualifications and immigrant adults (to find equivalences with regular apprenticeship certificates, and increase access to further education & training) through the development of an appropriate methodology, counselling concepts and development of portfolios, including on-going evaluation by the University of Linz. The CS highlights the complex process by which the assessors and advisers had to find a âcommon languageâ in the elaboration of the portfolios. The CS emphasised the importance of trust and good will between the organisations concerned for this small scale project.
VET â Xref to 3rd sector/AE
CS2 Academy of Continuing Education: This case study reports on âa new approachâ for Austria for the recognition of formal, non-formal and informal learning for adult educators. It reports on the newly founded (2007) Academy of Continuing Education (ACE), developed through a three-year ESF project â and also funded by the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture, and the clients. It is run by various institutions of adult education, universities, and thus described as a trans-institutional network of adult education centres. The case study reports on the accreditation system regulated through the Council responsible for accrediting candidatesâ competences and educational special courses; setting standards as well as addressing quality assurance and monitoring issues in order to develop a recognition model for adult educators with substantial experience in the field, enabling them to continue to Higher Education level.
3rd Sector/ AE
It described the two levels for which candidates can be assessed and the methodology for portfolio building and accreditation, (using ECTS), paying particular attention to the role of advisers and evaluators. It is particularly informative on the processes involved, highlighting the use of online-portfolios aiming to make the learning biography âvisibleâ. To summarise this case study is interesting in that it illustrates the links between the recognition process with a counselling-supported completion of the competence profile towards the qualification of âadult educatorâ, while being specific on a well thought out and developed methodology. It concludes highlighting the need for increased cooperation with universities, and the inclusion of ACE certificate and graduate levels into the Austrian NQF.
CS3 Informal Competence Acquisition-Educational Guidance Sector- This case study reports on an ongoing subproject (main project: âEducational Guidance in Viennaâ) organised under the umbrella of the AE national organisation (RĂBW) for voluntary educational and cultural work, supported by the Federal Ministry for Education, Arts and Culture and ESF funding. It involves practitioners with substantial experience in counselling and portfolio construction for adults, who agreed to participate in testing new tools for identifying informally acquired competences, starting with a focus on the first counsellor-client meeting which is felt can be very successful for the client and concentrating on competences acquired in one single prominent field of activity. In this way, the subproject aims at elaborating âmini-formatsâ portfolios â competence sketches and competence profiles (more elaborated) - and to adapt the method of competence balance for educational counselling. The self-selected counsellors chose between them 25 clients: persons with a migration background; people with disabilities; young people with special needs; adults interested in second-chance education. This project is interesting in its methodology used; such as asking counsellors to investigate and reflect on the status of informal learning / informally acquired competences in their professional practice in order to identify possible relevant tools. Moreover, it describes tools being developed by the counsellors and their clients, to reflect the clientsâ own language and understanding of their own competences and the contexts (social element) in which they were developed. this case study illustrates an on-going elaboration of methodology for formative (self) recognition of competences for and by adults with appropriate and well thought out guidance processes.
AE/ 3rd Sector