In order to stimulate adult learning, the recognition and validation of knowledge, skills and competences is of great importance. In the Netherlands, there are two options: schools can either develop their own ways and instruments for recognition and validation, or they can cooperate with EVC (recognition of previously acquired competences)-providers.
An EVC procedure entails collecting data about someone's knowledge and skills. Evidence is assessed in relation to nationally recognised occupational standards. Relevant certificates and life/work experience all count towards the assessment. The collected evidence is then recorded in a certificate of competence.
A certificate of competence gives an overview of the holder’s knowledge and skills. It creates a clear picture of their occupational experience and level of performance. If you understand your own capabilities, you deploy your talents more effectively and know the kind of work that suits you. You therefore opt for training in line with your current job or the career that you are aiming for in the future.
The certificate of competence recognises the competences that the holder has acquired by non-formal and informal means. To obtain a certificate of competence, an applicant first initiates an EVC procedure. They then compile a portfolio containing evidence of their knowledge and skills. A coach is available to offer guidances. Evidence may include:
- letters of recommendation
- reports of job performance interviews
- products made by the applicant
The importance of lifelong learning is being recognised. It is also evident from the rising number of people aged between 25 and 64 who are engaged in learning activities.
Percentage of 25-64-year-olds engaged in learning activities (Lifelong Learning)