How will you record and present achievement in the future?
In 2017 the 100 millionth Europass CV was produced. It has proven to be popular and successful with a 2016 survey of Europass CV users reporting that 85% of respondents rated it as Good or Excellent. But Europass isn’t resting on its laurels.
Evolution of learning
Learning has changed enormously in the last decade, and is expected to change further, with an increase in online learning. We are increasingly hearing about learning becoming more ‘granular’ and bespoke. New ways of recording achievement are needed to reflect changes in learning, but also to counter fraud, and adapt to digital technologies and social media.
Evolution of recruitment
Recruitment is increasingly moving online, particularly through the use of social professional networks. Paper CVs are becoming less relevant, and online application forms or electronic CVs are now the norm. People are increasingly using smartphones or tablets for job-seeking.
What might the future look like?
It is difficult to tell. No one technology seems to pervade, and technology moves forward rapidly. Professional social networks like LinkedIn seem to be having a period of success while so far ePortfolios seem to have failed to become mainstream.
In 2016, the UK National Europass Centre (UK NEC) wrote a paper entitled Europass 2020: A vision for meeting the current and future needs of modern European citizens in recording and promoting skills, qualifications and experience. This set out a vision of an online environment where individuals could store and share information relating to their study and work experience. This environment would also include an ‘issuing environment’” where the individual’s information could be verified –for example through the use of digital credentials.
Please contribute to the new Europass
The UK NEC and other European centres are exploring a number of technologies to develop a concept of what Europass might look like and how it might benefit UK and European citizens, as well as employers and other stakeholders. These include:
- ePortfolios – an online space where electronic evidence is assembled, managed and can be shared with third parties.
- Open Badges – visual tokens of achievement, issued by and traceable to a third party, which can be shared and used online.
- Blockchain credentials – a way of issuing qualifications or blocks of learning (including Open Badges) which are traceable and verifiable by anchoring them to a Blockchain which attempts to eradicate the potential for fraud.
- Digital Diploma Registers – online repositories of digital documents that are protected with digital signatures and other digital security measures. Often accessed online by invitation of the holder.
We invite you to contribute to the development of the new Europass. Please comment below with your thoughts on:
- What sort of employability information do you think students should be encouraged to collect and share?
- Where you think there are gaps in the information individuals are able to record?
- What information do employers find difficult to gather when recruiting?
- Are there any technologies that might be considered when modernising Europass?
- Do you think there is a need for modernisation of the existing Europass Portfolio, or for Europass at all?
The International Projects team at UK NARIC recently participated alongside other international stakeholders in higher education, in an EU-funded study visit* to Poitiers, France on how student mobility increases employability and integration in the work place. Student mobility is widely accepted as a social and economic benefit whereby students gain valuable new social skills and learning approaches that make them more adaptable in the work place.
The visit focussed on aspects of the ‘Mobility Scoreboard’ recently developed in response to a call by Members States to remove obstacles to mobility such as:
- Information and guidance about mobility opportunities;
- Portability of student aid;
- Knowledge of foreign languages;
- Recognition of studies abroad (use of ECTS and Diploma Supplement); and
- Support for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.
The study visit explored some of these obstacles in the different education systems, discussing at depth the use of key mobility and recognition tools such as Erasmus / Erasmus +, Europass and the European Credit Transfer system for facilitating mobility. A visit to the Université de La Rochelle provided the group with information about the university’s internationalisation strategy, helping to facilitate study periods abroad for students and researchers. The strategy focuses on the ‘professionalisation’ of the university’s curriculum to teach students skills relevant for employment within their chosen programme such as languages, IT and business skills, developing over 150 partnerships with universities in Europe, the Asia-Pacific and the Americas, and helping students fund study periods abroad through university grants or funds raised by the community of La Rochelle.
For the International Projects team at UK NARIC, participation in the study visit facilitated a deeper understanding of the obstacles and best practices in student mobility and recognition across Europe. By establishing networks and building partnerships with participants from the study visit, we hope to work on future projects to ease the recognition for student mobility within Europe and internationally.
*Disclaimer: The content of this publication is the sole responsibility of the publisher and the European Commission is not liable for any use that may be made of the information.
 European Commission – IP/14/9 10/01/2014.