Grant Agreement/ Equal-Classname of the Project

EQUAL-CLASS: Engeneers qualified in higher non-university VET institutions – providing arguments and evidence for NQF/EQF classification

  • Number of the project:2012–1-AT1-LEO05-06968/ LLP-LDV-TOI-12-AT-0014
  • Duration of the project: 1/10/2012 – 31/03/2014
  • Budget 1.332.324.93 Litas
  • Main executor: 3s Undernehmensberatung GmbH
  • Institution at VMU: Faculty of Social Sciences
  • Responsible person (s) at VMU: Rita Pileckaitė

Aim of the project

to study qualifications in the field of mechatronics, electrical engineering/electronics that can be obtained in higher non-university VET institutions or  comparable institutions in Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Lithuania, and Portugal.

Actors involved

3s Undernehmensberatung GmbH, Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas, Höhere Technische Bundeslehr- und Versuchsanstalt St. Pölten, Bundesministerium für Unterricht, Kunst und Kultur, ABB Technikerschule, Baden, Ordem dos Engenheiros Técnicos, Sociedade Portuguesa de Inovação – Consultadoria Empresarial e Fomento da Inovação, S.A, Grundig Akademie – Fachschule für Technik, EUproVET, EURO-PROF – European Association of Higher Educated Professionals – Europäischer Verband für höher qualifizierte Berufe, CONSULTUR. Utredning & Analyse. Odd Bjørn Ure, Asociace vyšších odborných škol – Association of Tertiary Professional Schools, CEyeClon AG, Konferenz Höhere Fachschulen, Instituto Superior de Engenharia do Porto, Lietuvos inžinerinės pramonės asociacija LINPRA, Assoziation-Bund Deutscher Techniker e.V, Festo Didactic GmbH & Co. KG, Stichting Landelijk Expertise- en Informatiecentrum Duaal Onderwijs, Bundesarbeitskreis Fachschulen Technik, Kammer für Arbeiter und Angestellte für Wien.

Short description of the project

The EQUAL-CLASS project focuses on qualifications in the field of mechatronics/electrical engineering that can be achieved in higher non-university VET institutions or comparable institutions in the following countries: Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Lithuania, Portugal. Therefore, the EQUAL-CLASS project, which is a Transfer of an Innovation project, aims to transfer the methodology developed in the previous ZOOM project.

The EQUAL-CLASS project focuses on engineers’ qualifications from higher non-university VET institutions or comparable institutions in the partner countries and their (non-formal/informal) competences acquired in the labour market.

The main aims of the EQUAL-CLASS project are:

  • adapt, test and further develop a comprehensive methodology for describing qualifications (based on the ZOOM template);
  • compare qualifications in the field of mechatronics with regard to their learning outcomes in the emerging NQFs and their links to EQF levels;
  • use ‘Remote Labs’ (i.e. online laboratories to remotely conduct real experiments) as a reality check to gain further evidence for the knowledge, skills and competence of learners or graduates in the previously mentioned fields;
  • identify and analyse occupations and positions of graduates of higher non-university VET programmes in those fields in AT, CH, DE, LT, PT;
  • elaborate to what extent relevant professional experience acquired after a VET programme justifies another – higher – qualification; i.e. the definition of a new qualification that can be allocated to a higher NQF level.

The EQUAL-CLASS project will provide an example of developing comparable descriptions of similar qualifications from different countries. It will help create mutual trust and understanding through transparency and comparability among countries and in the European labour market. Transparency and better comparability of qualifications as well as the consideration of work experience following graduation (validation of non-formal/informal learning) should enhance cooperation between VET and the labour market. By sharing relevant possibilities and experience from partner countries and by jointly developing scenarios and recommendations, the project also contributes to a transnational understanding of how professional experience could be taken into account in the classification process. By means of exemplary analyses and discussion of the comparability of qualifications in the context of NQF and EQF, EQUAL-CLASS shall facilitate the transparency and recognition of these engineering qualifications.

Moreover, the two suggested reality checks – “Remote Labs” and the alumni survey – on engineering students’ competences and graduates’ positions, occupations and experience will show relevant aspects of the engineering labour market.