Monday, 28 November 2016
8.30 - 9.30 Registration
9.30 - 11.00

Welcome and opening
Mara Brugia (Deputy director, Cedefop)

Political context for validation in Europe
Ana Carla Pereira (European Commission)
Setting the scene for the conference: reasons why validation is becoming more important, the EU political context and progress made in political terms


The past: what can we learn from the past two decades of validation work in Europe?
Jens Bjornavold (Cedefop)
Departing from the Cedefop publication Making learning visible (2000) the presentation will discuss lessons from the past two decades.

The present: first results of the 2016 European inventory update on validation of non-formal and informal learning
Ernesto Villalba (Cedefop)
Presentation of the first results of the 2016 European inventory update on validation of non-formal and informal learning: which are the main strengths and challenges?

Chair: Antonio Ranieri (Cedefop)

11.00 - 11.30

Coffee break

11.30 - 13.00

The future: presentations from three countries with different traditions and approaches to validation

  • Poland
    Agnieszka Chłoń-Domińczak (Educational Research Institute, Poland)
  • Sweden
    Elin Landell replaced by Karl Berg (National Delegation for Validation 2015-19, Sweden)
  • France
    Yolande Fermon (Ministère de l'enseignement supérieur et de la recherche)

Plenary discussion

Questions for discussion:

  • What is the overall vision regarding validation?
  • Who should benefit from validation?
  • Which stakeholders will (have to) be involved to make validation a reality?
  • How can trust in validation be assured?
  • What is the role of the national qualifications framework (NQF)?
  • How can validation be funded?

The plenary discussion will focus on how validation can become a practical reality for individual users in their national work and learning contexts.

Chair: Ruud Duvekot (CL3S/EC-VPL, Netherlands)

13.00 - 14.00


14.00 - 15.30

Parallel sessions focusing on four key users of validation

The parallel sessions aim to develop proposals on how the validation needs of each specific target group can be addressed. The sessions address the same questions for each target group:

  • What needs to be in place to address specific user needs?
  • How could coordination between services and stakeholders be achieved?
  • What type of methodology, including guidance and counselling, is most suitable for the specific user? 
Session 1 Validation for migrants
Martin Noack (Senior Project Manager, Programm Lernen fürs Leben, Bertelsmann Foundation) and Ramona López-Salinas (Coaching für Migrantinnen und Migranten in die Arbeitswelt - AWO IntegrationsCenter West)
Rapporteur: Manuel Souto Otero (University of Cardiff )
Session 2 Validation for the unemployed or at risk of unemployment
Alain Kock (Consortium de validation des compétences, Belgium – French Community)
Rapporteur: Kirsten Aagaard (Head of Centre, National Knowledge Centre for Validation of Prior Learning, Denmark)
Session 3 Validation for low-qualified adults
Gonçalo Xufre (Director, National Agency for Qualification and VET – ANQEP, Portugal) and Catarina Gaspar (Cinemate,SA)
Rapporteur: Gina Ebner (European Association for the Education of Adults – EAEA)
Session 4 Validation for people in employment (Presentation by an employer)
Jan Stepan (PwC, UK)
Rapporteur: Roman Senderek (Institute for Industrial Management at RWTH Aachen University, Germany)

15.30 - 16.00

Coffee break

16.00 - 17.30 Parallel sessions (continued)
18.30 Dinner (provided by Cedefop)


Tuesday, 29 November 2016
8:45 - 9:00  Registration
9.00 - 10.00

Validation in Europe from an outside perspective
The presentations will contrast the European approach with the experience from Canada and New Zealand.

  • Canada
    Bonnie Kennedy (Executive Director of Canadian Association of Prior Learning Assessment)
  • New Zealand
    Grant Klinkum (Deputy Chief Executive, Quality Assurance at the New Zealand Qualifications Authority)
10.00 - 11.00

Presentation of parallel session outcomes
The four rapporteurs from the parallel sessions of the previous day will present results of the discussions.
A plenary discussion will follow on how different needs and priorities from different user groups can be covered in a consistent and coordinated way.

Chair: Paul Guest (Orientra)

11.00 - 11.30

Coffee break

11.30 - 13.00

Moving forward – Panel discussion

The session will reflect on the conference outcomes with panellists sharing their views and ideas on the way forward. Discussion will focus on how to create practically systems that meet the needs of (diverse) users.

  • Social partner perspective
    Pavel Trantina (President of the Section for Employment, Social Affairs and Citizenship, European Economic and Social Committee)
  • International perspective
    Madhu Singh (Senior Programme Specialist, UNESCO – Institute for Lifelong Learning – UIL)
  • European policy perspective
    Lieve Van den Brande (European Commission, DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion) (tbc)
  • Civil society perspective
    Marcio Barcelos (Board Member, European Youth Forum)
  • National perspective
    Andrina Wafer (Head of Access and Lifelong Learning – Dearbhú Cáilíochta agus Cáilíochtaí Éireann, Quality and Qualifications Ireland – QQI)

Chair: Hanne Christensen (Cedefop)

13.00 - 13.30

Conclusions and closure

  • Ana Carla Pereira (European Commission)
  • James Calleja (Director, Cedefop)

13.30 - 15.00

Light lunch