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Netherlands:Assessment in Vocational Secondary Education (MBO)

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Overview Netherlands

Contents

Netherlands:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Netherlands:Historical Development

Netherlands:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Netherlands:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Netherlands:Political and Economic Situation

Netherlands:Organisation and Governance

Netherlands:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Netherlands:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Netherlands:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Netherlands:Organisation of Private Education

Netherlands:National Qualifications Framework

Netherlands:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

Netherlands:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

Netherlands:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Netherlands:Funding in Education

Netherlands:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Netherlands:Higher Education Funding

Netherlands:Adult Education and Training Funding

Netherlands:Early Childhood Education and Care

Netherlands:Organisation of Early Childhood Education and Care

Netherlands:Teaching and Learning in Early Childhood Education and Care

Netherlands:Assessment in Early Childhood Education and Care

Netherlands:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Netherlands:Primary Education

Netherlands:Organisation of Primary Education

Netherlands:Teaching and Learning in Primary Education

Netherlands:Assessment in Primary Education

Netherlands:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Primary Education

Netherlands:Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Netherlands:Organisation of General Lower Secondary Education

Netherlands:Teaching and Learning in General Lower Secondary Education

Netherlands:Assessment in General Lower Secondary Education

Netherlands:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Netherlands:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Netherlands:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Netherlands:Organisation of Vocational Secondary Education (MBO)

Netherlands:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Secondary Education (MBO)

Netherlands:Assessment in Vocational Secondary Education (MBO)

Netherlands:Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Netherlands:Higher Education

Netherlands:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Netherlands:First Cycle Programmes

Netherlands:Bachelor

Netherlands:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Netherlands:Second Cycle Programmes

Netherlands:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Netherlands:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Netherlands:Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Distribution of Responsibilities

Netherlands:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Netherlands:Main Providers

Netherlands:Main Types of Provision

Netherlands:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Netherlands:Teachers and Education Staff

Netherlands:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Netherlands:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Netherlands:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Netherlands:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Management and Other Education Staff

Netherlands:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Netherlands:Management Staff for Higher Education

Netherlands:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Netherlands:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Quality Assurance

Netherlands:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Netherlands:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Educational Support and Guidance

Netherlands:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Netherlands:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Netherlands:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Netherlands:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Netherlands:Mobility and Internationalisation

Netherlands:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Mobility in Higher Education

Netherlands:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Netherlands:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Netherlands:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Netherlands:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Netherlands:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Netherlands:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Netherlands:National Reforms in School Education

Netherlands:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Netherlands:National Reforms in Higher Education

Netherlands:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Netherlands:European Perspective

Netherlands:Legislation

Netherlands:Institutions

Netherlands:Bibliography

Netherlands:Glossary

Progression of students

The method of assessment during the period of practical training is set out in the practical training contract. Some of the courses in the vocational pathway can be taken part-time.

Every course in secondary vocational education leads to a certain occupational skill or qualification. Currently, courses are based on either exit qualifications or competences. The Adult and Vocational Education Act (WEB) introduced a system of partial qualifications with exit qualification documents setting out the theoretical and practical knowledge and skills that students need to have. But the fast-changing labour market calls for a flexible workforce and a different approach to training in secondary vocational education. Instead of separate exit qualifications for theory and practice, the diploma requirements are now described in MBO qualification profiles in the form of core tasks, work processes and competences. The original exit qualifications have been incorporated and updated. Now that vocational education is competence-based, employees are more mobile on the labour market and can continue to meet its changing demands more effectively.

Certification


In 2004, the business and education communities embarked on a joint initiative to introduce vocational qualification structure in secondary vocational education. From August 2013 all courses must be vocational-based, in line with the new MBO qualification profiles compiled for the educational institutions by the centres of expertise on vocational education, training and the labour market. A total of 237 profiles were produced for the 2010/2011 school year. They are learner-based, specifying the competences, knowledge and skills the junior practitioner must possess in order to be qualified for the occupation in question. The examination tests whether the candidate can carry out occupational tasks appropriately and whether they have the competences and underpinning knowledge necessary for the job.

Responsibilities have been designated as follows:

  • The business community and the teaching profession are responsible for producing MBO qualification profiles which describe the knowledge and/or skills a candidate must possess in order to obtain an MBO certificate.
  • The profiles are then checked by the Vocational Qualifications Coordination Centre.
  • The government gives the profiles its approval.
  • The institution provides high-quality courses and, in consultation with the business community, decides on teaching methods and strategies.
  • The institution puts together an examination that tests whether the candidate genuinely has the skills, knowledge and/or attitudes prescribed in the MBO qualification profiles.The Education Inspectorate is responsible for monitoring the quality of teaching and examinations in secondary vocational education.
    Under the terms of the Adult and Vocational Education Act (WEB), the primary responsibility for examinations rests with the institutions themselves. The aim is to achieve closer cohesion between teaching and examinations and allow for flexibility and a tailored approach. It is up to the individual institution to decide on the form examinations should take, within the statutory frameworks.

At the same time, secondary vocational education examinations must meet the quality standards laid down by the government. For instance, the examination must test the competences, knowledge and skills prescribed in the MBO qualification profiles. Individual institutions have to ensure that their own examinations meet the national quality standards. This means that they are responsible for quality assurance and for making any necessary improvements. They are also accountable to the public. The Education Inspectorate, in turn, is responsible for monitoring examination quality.

The Minister of Education, Culture and Science may withdraw the right to hold examinations from institutions that fail to meet the standards. These institutions then have to outsource the examinations to an institution that is authorised to hold examinations.

Institutions may decide to outsource examinations if they cannot guarantee the quality required or for reasons of efficiency, if only a few students attend the course. In doing so, institutions also transfer responsibility for the examinations. Institutions are obliged to outsource examinations if their right to hold them has been withdrawn.

New developments

Besides monitoring, the government is working on ways of improving examination quality in secondary vocational education by:
● introducing a national examination in Dutch and arithmetic/mathematics;
● promoting further standardisation of examinations in vocational subjects, for example by using examinations compiled nationally;
● giving the business community a more significant role in the examining procedures.