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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
National reforms in vocational education and training and adult learning


14.Ongoing reforms and policy developments

14.3National reforms in vocational education and training and adult learning

Last update: 20 March 2024


Module structured adult education permanent from August 1.

As a part of the Completion reform, the Norwegian parliament (Stortinget) has decided to make modular curricula a permanent arrangement in adult learning. The goal of the modular approach is to tailor education better to the needs of adults. From August 1, 2024 modular curricula are introduced in both preparatory adult education and modular vocational education. A pilot program for both levels began in 2017, and ends in 2024.

  • Preparatory adult education –newly developed modular curricula for learning subjects and languages, at the level below upper secondary education (EQF 4). 
  • Vocational education and training – modular curricula for 13 different trade certificates.

The objective of module based learning is to provide flexible, efficient, and tailored training courses for adults. In cooperation with participants, the training provider designs an individual course based on the individual's competences, prerequisites, and needs.


New Education Act

The Norwegian Government has submitted a proposal for a new Education Act to the Norwegian Parliament (Storting). The new Education Act and new regulations are planned to come into force from August 2024

Among the proposals for changed legislation concerning VET and adult education are:

  • A right to a new trade or journeyman’s certificate, even if the apprentice/student has one already, or has completed with university entrance qualifications. Today you can only take one trade or journeyman’s certificate, and it is not possible to start vocational training is you have taken a general education course.
  • New expanded rights for adults are proposed. In addition, it is proposed to modularize training to make it easier for more adults to gain a competence and complete a training they have started but interrupted previously.

Module structured adult education will be permanent

 As a part of the Completion reform, the Norwegian parliament (Stortinget) has decided that module structured curriculums will be a permanent arrangement in adult learning from August 2024.


There were no reforms or policy changes to report on in 2022.


The new structure of upper secondary vocational programmes was implemented for the school year 2020–21, where the total was extended from eight to ten, and four of these were adapted to better fit labour market needs. The new vocational programmes are as follows:

  • Electrical engineering and computer technology
  • Crafts, design and product development
  • Healthcare, child and youth development
  • Building and construction
  • Agriculture, fishing and forestry
  • Restaurant and food processing
  • Sales, service and tourism
  • Technological and industrial production
  • Hairdressing, floral, interior and retail design
  • Information technology and media production