The common European tools for education and training - such as Europass, the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) and the European credit system for vocational education and training (ECVET) - will make it easier for citizens to pursue learning throughout their lives, and to document their skills and knowledge in a form which is recognised by employers and the labour market across Europe.

Employers and trade unions are important partners in the implementation of these tools. Cedefop’s conference ‘Common EU tools for education and training – Working together for shared vocational education and training policies’ - taking place on 24-25 November in the European Parliament - was organised together with and for the social partners.

Common to all the tools is their focus on the outcomes of learning, on what a person knows, understands and is actually able to do, rather than a concentration on how, how long and where somebody has been learning. The focus on learning outcomes is helpful to employers and employees alike - clarifying for learners the objective of their learning process and clarifying for employers what they can expect from a particular qualification.