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Belgium-French-Community:National Qualifications Framework

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Overview Belgium (French Community)

Contents

Belgium-French-Community:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Belgium-French-Community:Historical Development

Belgium-French-Community:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Belgium-French-Community:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Belgium-French-Community:Political and Economic Situation

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation and Governance

Belgium-French-Community:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Belgium-French-Community:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation of Private Education

Belgium-French-Community:National Qualifications Framework

Belgium-French-Community:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

Belgium-French-Community:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

Belgium-French-Community:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Belgium-French-Community:Funding in Education

Belgium-French-Community:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Belgium-French-Community:Higher Education Funding

Belgium-French-Community:Adult Education and Training Funding

Belgium-French-Community:Early Childhood Education and Care

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation of Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

Belgium-French-Community:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

Belgium-French-Community:Assessment in Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation of Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Belgium-French-Community:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Belgium-French-Community:Assessment in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Belgium-French-Community:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Belgium-French-Community:Primary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation of Primary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Teaching and Learning in Primary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Assessment in Primary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Primary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation of General Lower Secondary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Teaching and Learning in General Lower Secondary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Assessment in General Lower Secondary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Assessment in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Teaching and Learning in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Belgium-French-Community:Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Belgium-French-Community:First Cycle Programmes

Belgium-French-Community:Bachelor

Belgium-French-Community:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Second Cycle Programmes

Belgium-French-Community:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Belgium-French-Community:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Belgium-French-Community:Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Distribution of Responsibilities

Belgium-French-Community:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Belgium-French-Community:Main Providers

Belgium-French-Community:Main Types of Provision

Belgium-French-Community:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Belgium-French-Community:Teachers and Education Staff

Belgium-French-Community:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Management and Other Education Staff

Belgium-French-Community:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Belgium-French-Community:Management Staff for Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Quality Assurance

Belgium-French-Community:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Educational Support and Guidance

Belgium-French-Community:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Belgium-French-Community:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Belgium-French-Community:Mobility and Internationalisation

Belgium-French-Community:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Mobility in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Belgium-French-Community:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Belgium-French-Community:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Belgium-French-Community:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Belgium-French-Community:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Belgium-French-Community:National Reforms in School Education

Belgium-French-Community:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Belgium-French-Community:National Reforms in Higher Education

Belgium-French-Community:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Belgium-French-Community:European Perspective

Belgium-French-Community:Legislation

Belgium-French-Community:Glossary

 

It is worth noting from the start that the creation of a national qualifications framework is particularly complex in Belgium, given that responsibility for education and training lies with various different political bodies, which also exercise their powers in different territories.

A higher education qualifications framework

Since the Decree of 9 May 2008, the French Community has had a Higher Education Qualifications Framework. The framework offers a generic description of three levels of higher education, corresponding to a specific set of knowledge, skills and competencies. Academic degrees are awarded at each level. They are the only academic degrees recognised in the French Community, and are the subject of quality assurance. The Higher Education Qualifications Framework is the result of a consultation process initiated in 2007 by the Minister for Higher Education and Scientific Research, in which all those involved in higher education in the French Community took part (government, administrations, higher education institutions and students). The framework transposes the European Qualifications Framework and is recognised in the European Higher Education Area.

A broader qualifications framework

From 2006 onwards, a High-Level Interdepartmental Group (HLIG) carried out work to prepare for the definition of a qualifications framework and compiled a report. This report set out the basic principles of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF), emphasised a number of precautions that needed to be taken to avoid any misunderstandings during its implementation, stressed the need for a quality assurance system whose principles were affirmed, and finally formulated a proposal for the gradual construction of the framework within the French Community.

In October 2007, the providers of vocational training (IFAPME – FOREM – Bruxelles Formation) and education for social advancement came together in a Skills Validation Consortium and continued the work of the HLIG. The Consortium’s Management Committee, relying in particular on the expertise of the Education and Training Council, identified a common methodology with a view to positioning the certificates and qualifications derived from the provision of vocational training and social advancement education with in relation to the EQF. This methodology was successfully trialled on around fifty qualifications covering a variety of fields of employment and professions with various education, training and validation bodies. The methodology consists of four steps:

  • checking that the qualification can be positioned according to certain criteria (relevance, competent body, assessment process and qualification awarded);
  • positioning the profession/field and the qualification in relation to the generic descriptors;
  • gathering any information regarding existing arrangements;
  • positioning the qualification in the EQF.

In 2009, the Education and Training Council issued a formal opinion on the creation of a French-Language Qualifications Framework.

In 2010, the governments of the French Community, the Walloon Region and Cocof entrusted the task of creating and managing the French-Language Qualifications Framework to a common scheme by means of a cooperation agreement. An intergovernmental working group bringing together representatives of the ministers concerned was assigned responsibility, with the help of experts, for providing methodological guidance and introducing a working plan according to a rigorous schedule. The idea is to create a dual-entry French-Language Qualifications Framework which will include, for each level, the qualification indicators and descriptors together with both the educational qualifications and diplomas and the vocational training qualifications. This dual-entry common framework has the advantage that it meets the objectives of the EQF while upholding the objective differences between the two types of qualification, and in particular the fact that the education system has objectives that extend beyond gaining employment. A guidance paper for the Government was submitted in December 2010.

In 2012, the governments confirmed those decisions. Further developments have taken place, such as:

  • an agreement on the double-entry framework with a clear definition of the qualifications that are likely to fit in the framework
  • an agreement on the positioning methods, respecting the relevant fields (education or professional training)
  • the finalised definition of the level descriptors according to the Flemish and European Frameworks
  • the soon to be finalised definition of rules ensuring the quality of certification granting by each stakeholder, and the quality of positioning in the framework
  • the creation of the steering and positioning body responsible for technical issues about positioning
  • the provision of a timetable for the French-speaking framework (March 2013) and of the referencing report (June 2013).

On March 18, 2015 a draft decree was voted, approving the Cooperation Agreement (February 26, 2015) between the French Community, the Walloon Region and the French Community Commission, on the establishment and management of a French-speaking Qualifications Framework, CFC.

The French-speaking Qualifications Framework is a framework of public interest and regulated by the government, which aims:

  • at promoting continuity and progression of learning pathways for citizens;
  • at increasing the readability of the qualifications of the French Community, Wallonia and COCOF;
  • at strengthening the intrinsic quality of the teaching process, training and skills validation, ensuring the adequacy of the positioning of each qualification at a given level of the frame;
  • at encouraging mobility of students in the French-speaking, European and Belgian world.

CFC is an eight-level framework that is compatible with the CEC and the VKS (Vlaamse kwalificatiestructuur) and with double entry: one for the qualifications in education, the second for the professional qualifications.

The idea is to position only the qualifications that allow access to a profession recognized as such by the SFMQ and therefore not to position the qualifications that cover only part of professional skills related to a trade.

Given the existence of three quality management systems for each major sector of education and training (compulsory education, higher education and vocational training), it is suggested to develop an internal structure common to the steering and positioning body, which will have two main tasks:

  • Promote the convergence of systems, processes and quality management procedures in light of the common general principles for quality management in the CFC, based on exchanges of good practices, advisory mechanisms, pilot inter-operator cooperation projects, etc.
  • Ensure the quality of the positioning process in the CFC.