The Adult Education Act states in Article 11: “(1) Adults can prove their knowledge, skills and abilities, regardless of how they were acquired, by taking exams. (2) The exams referred to in paragraph 1 of this Article shall be organised and conducted by an adult education institution that conducts the programme for acquiring the said knowledge, skills and competences, except for the State Matura Exam conducted by the National Centre for External Evaluation of Education.”
Currently, this approach is not implemented as a regular part of the adult education system. It is implemented in certain exceptional cases.
For learners who need retraining and training, theoretical knowledge is recognised on the basis of previously acquired certificates, thus enabling the continuation of education.
Adult education learners can also prove their practical skills gained through work, thus shortening education time and allowing faster access to the labour market. In the training programmes without attending practical classes and exercises, the knowledge acquired can be practically assessed before the three-member committee of the institution. The ministry has adopted a curriculum for acquiring basic digital, mathematical and reading skills, in which learning outcomes are clearly described. On the basis of that, adult education institutions can assess input skills, as well as evaluate learning outcomes acquired.
The systematic recognition of previously acquired knowledge is directly related to the implementation of the Croatian Qualifications Framework. Learning outcomes for each level must be clearly defined according to this framework so that they can be recognised outside the educational process. The Croatian Qualifications Framework Act adopted in 2013 states that there should be authorised institutions for the evaluation of learning outcomes sets and the certification of acquired learning outcomes sets. These are the institutions authorised to award qualifications. This procedure is valid only up to level 5 of the Croatian Qualifications Framework, which equals level 5 of the EQF.
The Ordinance on Recognition and Evaluation of Prior Learning, to be adopted by the Ministry of Education and Science, is crucial for the implementation of this recognition. The Ordinance has not yet been passed. A comprehensive system for recognition of knowledge and skills acquired through non-formal education and informal learning will be established after the adoption of the new Adult Education Act. The law will be adopted in 2021. This will be followed by the adoption of an Ordinance that will precisely determine the implementation procedure.
- Adult Education Act (OG 17/07, 107/07, 24/10). https://www.zakon.hr/z/384/Zakon-o-obrazovanju-odraslih
- Croatian Qualifications Framework Act (OG 22/13, 41/16, 64/18, 47/20) https://narodne-novine.nn.hr/clanci/sluzbeni/2018_07_64_1309.html