Annual Meeting of National Correspondents for QF-EHEA
The Council of Europe hosted the annual meeting of National Correspondents for Qualifications Frameworks (QF-EHEA) in Strasbourg on Friday 2 September. Over 30 countries attended the meeting providing updates on development on national frameworks and the impact of COVID-19 on higher education qualifications. Ireland was represented by Órla Barry, Senior Manager in Qualifications Information and Learning Opportunities.
Case studies were presented by 3 countries (United Kingdom, Finland and Andorra) about the implementation of the Reference Framework for Competences for Democratic Culture and its relationship with qualifications. It was generally agreed that the relationship was informal but evident in the learning outcomes associated with higher education qualifications.
A panel discussion about micro credentials, with a focus on the EU Recommendation on a European Approach to Micro credentials for Life Learning and Employability, included panellists representing higher education institutions, learners and the EU Commission. It was concluded that micro credentials are being considered by all countries with some expressing concerns about transparency and comparability. Overall, it was agreed that clear information needs to be given to learners about micro credentials and its relationship, or lack thereof, to qualifications frameworks.
The meeting concluded with a brief update about the European Learning Model which is a data scheme providing a single format to describe certificates of attendance, examination results, degrees and diplomas, diploma supplements, professional certifications, employer recommendations and any other kind of claims that are related to learning. The Learning Model informs national registers of qualifications, such as the Irish Register of Qualifications and the Qualifications Dataset Register (to which the IRQ is published). The EU Commission are currently developing a new version of the European Learning Model which will launch in 2023.