increasing mobility, releasing potential
Frazer Wallace, Coordinator of the UK
National Europass Centre, UK NARIC
June 2010
Europass – Why the need?
Some Statistics:
2.3% of Europeans (11.3
million people) live and work
in a European country that is
not their Member State.
Approximately 17% of
Europeans consider that they
will work in another Member
State in the future.
34% of Europeans rate their
chances of finding a job as
better abroad than at home.
17% of Europeans envisage
working abroad in the
future, ranging from 51% in
Denmark to just 4% in Italy.
Although 52% of respondents indicated that they
had had or expected to have practical difficulties
finding work (only 19% said that the need to
learn a new language would be a discouraging
When asked about the practical difficulties that
had, or were expected to be, encountered when
going to work abroad, 10% answered that they
had experienced or expected to experience
difficulties having their education and
professional qualifications recognised.
13% of Europeans have
lived abroad for the
purposes of education
and training.
Source: Special
Europass – What is it?
How did it come about?
A tool developed by the European Commission and launched in 2005 following
Council Decision No 2241/2004/EC.
It was designed to facilitate one of the fundamental principles of the Treaty of
Rome, namely the free movement of workers across Europe, by making it easier for
individuals to find employment or study abroad.
It provides a number of documentary tools to increase the transparency of
qualifications, experience and competences.
How does it facilitate mobility?
Helps Employers and HEIs, to understand the skills, competences and
qualifications of individuals, particularly those from other EU Member States.
Helps Individuals, by providing a means to clearly demonstrate their skills and
experiences in a transparent fashion.
Europass – What is it?
The Documents:
The Europass portfolio comprises 5 documents:
The component parts are distinct and separate and can be used individually or in
association with one another.
There is a National Europass Centre in each European Member State, whose job it is
to promote the use of the Europass Portfolio in that country.
Europass Curriculum Vitae (CV)
– what is it for?
What does it do?
The Europass CV helps users highlight their skills, qualifications and work
experience. It is free of charge, available to all and can be downloaded or completed
and edited online.
How can it help the individual?
It provides a standardised template recognisable across the EU to help users
draw attention to the attributes that will set them apart from others.
It contains a language section designed to promote the user’s language skills to
potential employers.
How does it help organisations?
If used as standard, it allows employers to easily compare applicants’ attributes
as the CVs can be easily cross referenced.
It gives an even playing field to applicants from all member states, thereby aiding
equal opportunities policies.
Who applies?
The individual can find out more, and complete the CV online or
download the template at
Europass Curriculum Vitae
– who uses it?
How widely used is it?
Europass Curriculum Vitae
– what does it look like?
Europass Language Passport
– what is it for?
What does it do?
Designed to be used to supplement an individual’s CV, the Language Passport
gives individuals the opportunity to provide additional detail on their language
Users record their:
• informal language skills – by allowing individuals to self assess their abilities
using the Common European Frame of Reference for Languages (CEFR).
• academic language courses.
• linguistic experience – designed to record language experience gained whilst on
work or study placements overseas.
How can it help the individual?
For individuals who have not formalised their language skills or experience
(those from bilingual/multilingual households, or those who have picked up
language abilities whilst working or studying) the Language Passport provides a
tool to self-assess those abilities which can then be presented to employers.
How does it help employers?
Provides employers, particularly those with a need for multi-lingual
employees with a summary of an applicant’s language abilities.
Europass Language Passport
– what is it for?
The CEFR – What is it?
It is the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. It is a
method of levelling language ability. Levels range from A1 (lowest) to C2
It is the referencing system designed by the Commission and now used by the
UK Border Agency and UK NARIC in their English Language assessment.
A summary of the Framework of reference is shown below:
Level Description
A1 Breakthrough
Basic User
A2 Waystage
B1 Threshold
Independent User
B2 Vantage
C1 Effective Operational
C2 Mastery
Proficient User
Descriptors allow individuals to
assess the level of their ability.
The full CEFR can be found in
your delegate pack.
Europass Language Passport
– what is it for?
Who Applies?
The individual can find out more, and complete the Language Passport online or
download the template at
Alternatively, the Language Passport can now be completed using the Europass
Language Passport iPhone Application. It is available to download, free of charge,
from the Apple App Store.
Interactive software, available on
a data stick has also been
developed that allows individuals
to attach sample documents to
exhibit the level of their
Feedback: A Case Study
“I've tried to use the online
system but got so confused I gave up! This app is soooo much
better! I highly recommend it to anyone looking to work in
Europe and I have actually secured a job on a ski resort in
France using this!” LAURA McSHASHI (App Store)
Europass Language Passport
– who uses it?
How widely used is it?
Europass Language Passport
– what does it look like?
Europass Mobility Supplement
– what is it for?
What does it do?
Europass Mobility provides a record, and validation of, skills and competences
acquired by an individual during an organised period of learning or training in
another European Country.
How does it help the individual?
Highlights cultural awareness and transferable skills for employers and
education providers.
It increases transparency and visibility of European Mobility experiences by
promoting the knowledge, skills and experiences gained.
Feedback: A Case Study
“The students thoroughly enjoyed their placements and returned to College
feeling more independent and confident; they feel that having the Europass
Mobility Supplement will give them a competitive edge when they apply either to
further their education or to enter employment”. WAKEFIELD COLLEGE.
Europass Mobility Supplement
– who uses it?
Who can use Europass Mobility?
The Europass Mobility Supplement is designed to benefit anyone taking part in a
“European Mobility Experience”.
What is a European Mobility Experience?
a) One that takes place as part of a Community programme in Education or Training
(usually part of the Lifelong Learning Programme).
b) An organised period of time spent in another Member State of the EU, EFTA, or
EEA for the purposes of, or as part of, a learning or training initiative.
Who Applies?
Individuals cannot apply on their own behalf.
placement registers on behalf of the beneficiary.
The organisation arranging the
Find out more and register at
Europass Mobility Supplement
– who uses it?
Who uses it in the UK?
• The majority of participants
come from the Lifelong Learning
Programmes, in particular
Leonardo da Vinci.
• Erasmus tend to record mobility
experiences using the Diploma
Supplement, rather than the
Mobility Supplement, though
either (or both) can be used.
• Europass Mobility is not a
compulsory element of the
programmes in the UK though it
is promoted to applicants.
Europass Mobility Supplement
– who uses it?
How widely used is it in other EU Countries?
• The UK is 6th in the league table
• It is widely used in Germany,
where it is a compulsory
requirement of the Lifelong
Learning Programmes (LLPs).
• In the UK it is not compulsory,
though it is promoted by the
national agencies responsible for
the LLPs.
• It is widely used to record
Leonardo da Vinci Placements.
Europass Mobility Supplement
– how does it work?
Europass Mobility Supplement
– What does it look like?
Europass Mobility Supplement
– what is the future?
ECVET – What is it?
“The European Credit System for Vocational Education and Training (ECVET) facilitates
the validation of VET training periods and mobility across Europe”.
No really, what is it?
It is a system that is designed to recognise periods of formal, non-formal and informal
vocational education and training completed across Europe and apportion credit to
those periods of learning.
The accumulated credit can then be used to contribute towards a formal qualification
either in the same, or another Member State.
So where does Europass fit in?
It is anticipated that Europass Mobility will be used to record ECVET credits.
Houses the National Contact Point for ECVET for England & Wales and
has put forward a proposal to pilot the implementation of ECVET
including the use of the Europass Mobility Supplement.
More information can be found at
Europass Mobility Supplement
– recording ECVET
Section 5b has been developed with the intention of recording ECVET and ECTS
Europass Diploma / Certificate
Supplements – what are they for?
What do they do?
The Diploma and Certificate Supplements are designed to supplement a qualification
certificate or diploma – the Diploma Supplement for HE qualifications and the Certificate
Supplement for FE qualifications.
They are the agreed, standard European method for presenting and explaining an
individual’s qualifications.
They were designed to facilitate mobility of individuals by providing greater
transparency of Higher and Further Education qualifications across Europe.
documents provide information on the qualification’s:
• Content, key skills and grading.
• Level within the NQF and information on the issuing institution.
• The function of the qualification and any professional status.
Europass Diploma / Certificate
Supplements – advantages?
How can they help the individual?
They increase transparency of qualifications – they make qualifications easier to
understand by providing information on the content and how they fit into the education
system of the country in which they were issued. It also provides information on the
education system itself.
They facilitate mobility – in that they make it easier for employers or educational
institutions to understand the qualifications of individuals both in the country of issue,
and in particular for those from other member states. They therefore make it easier for
individuals to study or work abroad.
How can it help organisations?
By increasing the transparency of it’s qualifications, an HEI or FE awarding body gives
increased credibility to its qualification and gives the recipient of the qualification more
opportunity to use the qualification outside the UK.
They allow employers or educational institutions to easily assess
the level of attainment of potential employees or students.
Europass Diploma / Certificate
Supplements – advantages?
Europass Diploma / Certificate
Supplements – who uses them?
Who can issue them?
The Diploma Supplement is issued by university registries.
The Certificate Supplement is issued by Further Education Awarding Bodies.
Who uses them in the UK?
The Berlin Communiqué of the Bologna Process set the requirement for all HEIs
to issue the Diploma Supplement to all students graduating from 2005.
Currently 3 universities issue the Europass Diploma Supplement, though most will
issue some form of diploma supplement (HEAR, transcripts or a non-Europass
labelled Diploma Supplement.
The Certificate Supplement is issued by City and Guilds England, and the Institute
of Leadership and Management.
Europass Diploma / Certificate
Supplements – who uses them?
How widely used are they in other EU/EEA countries?
As far as we are aware, no statistics exist, but we know that the supplements are used
quite widely.
Diploma Supplement:
The European University Association’s 2005 report indicated that the majority of
European HEIs had complied with the specification in the Berlin Communiqué that they
issue Diploma Supplements to every graduate by the end of 2005.
By 2004 the following countries had introduced it by law: Denmark, Estonia, Finland
Latvia, Norway, Sweden.
In addition the following countries indicated its imminent introduction in 2005:
Austria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, the Netherlands,
Poland, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, and Turkey.
Evidence is that the pace of implementation is faster in many continental European
countries because it is commonly introduced by primary legislation.
Certificate Supplement:
We are awaiting the results of a survey by the Belgian Europass
Europass Diploma Supplement –
What does it look like?
Personalised document usually issued by the university registry
along with the Qualification Certificate.
Europass Certificate Supplement
– What does it look like?
Non-personalised document, but specific to the course. Usually
made available for free download from the awarding body’s
Europass Diploma / Certificate
Supplements – What is HEAR?
What is HEAR?
It stands for the Higher Education Achievement Record and was proposed by the
Measuring and Recording Student Achievement Steering Group ('Burgess Group').
How does it impact on the Diploma Supplement?
It is not yet clear how the UK universities intend to respond to the on-going HEAR pilot
Throughout November the UK NEC will participate in a number of dissemination and
promotional events highlighting the benefits of the DS, and discussing the features of
HEAR. The British Council, the UK National Europass Centre and the Burgess Group
will be represented at these events, and hopefully the situation will be more clear
following these events.
Europass Diploma / Certificate
Supplements – the future?
What is the EQF?
The European Qualifications Framework is a device for understanding the relationship
between National Qualification Frameworks and the levels within them between EU
Member States.
How does it work?
Each Member State has been tasked with referencing its National Qualification
Framework against the EQF. It is intended that the EQF be used to compare
qualification frameworks between member states.
Discussions are on-going on a national and European Level as to whether or not an
EQF reference should be inserted on the Europass Diploma Supplement or Certificate
Opinion is divided as to if, and where, the EQF should be referenced on academic
Europass – A Summary
To conclude…
Europass provides clear information and practical help to employers, education
institutions and awarding bodies and individuals in a format recognisable around
Its success will depend on its uptake, though there is a trend towards significant
increase in the uptake of all the documents (such that statistics are available) year on
And the future…
Document specific evolution of the instruments has already been discussed, however it
seems likely that a new document – the Skills Passport will soon be added to the
Save for a mention in a Commission Politician’s recent speech, no specifics have been
given at this stage, but it is anticipated that it will be similar to the Mobility
Amendments to the CV format are also under discussion at policy level.
Thank You,
Frazer Wallace
Coordinator of the UK NEC [email protected]
Chris Lyons
Head of Business Development, UK NARIC
[email protected]