Qualifications largely determine our chances at employment, our ability to access further education and our social status. But they also have limitations: much of the knowledge and competence we acquire through life is left out of our diplomas, certificates and titles. To close this gap, both the education and employment worlds need to engage in redesigning and updating qualifications. This was the main theme of Cedefop’s Agora Conference, Qualifications for lifelong learning and employability (Thessaloniki 5-6 October), which examined how qualifications are used in today’s economy.
A Cedefop conference on Sharing the costs of training in the newer EU Member States, (Thessaloniki, 15-16 October 2009) will show that overall investment and participation in training can both increase if there are well designed financing schemes combining public and private funds for vocational education and training (VET).
New ideas on teaching and learning, as well as recent European policy developments on qualifications are affecting the way in which curricula are drawn. At the same time, changes in curriculum organisation are affecting teaching and learning patterns at all educational levels. This dynamic is to be the main topic of discussion at the Cedefop workshop on Curriculum innovation and reform: policies and practices, to be held in Thessaloniki on 9-10 November.