ApprenticeshipQ Kick-off meeting

The introductional meeting of the partnership was held in the fascilities of the DHBW Campus in Heilbron on 23 – 24 October 2017. All 8 partners joined the meeting and those are DHBW from Germany as a project coordinator, Association of Colleges from UK, EURASHE from Belgium, FH Joanneum from Austria, Porto Polytechnic from Portugal, Knowledge Innovation Center from Malta, Mondragon University from Spain and Association HVC from Slovenia.

The aim of the meeting was to harmonize the understanding of the project activities and common misleading terminology, to specify the method of implementation and the dates of implementation of activities under Outcome 1. All agreed activities  will significantly contribute to achieving long-term goals: to provide a clear framework for quality management of apprenticeships at the system, provider and company levels ensuring systematic feedback, to foster mutual trust and respect through regular cooperation and better quality management between the apprenticeship partners, to ensure the content of HVET programmes is responsive to changing skill needs in companies and society, to ensure fair, valid, and authentic assessment of learning outcomes in apprenticeships and to support the continuous professional development of in-company trainers and improving their working conditions.

This knowledge will be made useful for target groups including institutions, enterprises and students by creating:

  • an institutional quality management framework for apprenticeships
  • an online-assessment tool for quality management
  • an apprenticeships QM Manual for educational institutions containing instruments, methods and tools they can work with to develop a joint quality culture between themselves and small and medium enterprises
  • an apprenticeships QM Manual for enterprises containing instruments, methods and tools they can work with to develop a joint quality culture between themselves and educational organizations

The project will consult extensively with stakeholders to forge consensus in the field, including by organising:

  • Workshops in 6 countries involving more than 300 QM experts, other expert stakeholders from training and education site
  • Field test in 6 countries involving more than 300 employers, quality managers, trainer and teachers, HVET institutions, etc.
  • Survey in 6 countries involving more than 1.200 employers, QM person responsible from the placement as well as the HVET institution site, teachers and trainers

Through the involvement of chambers of commerce, standardization bodies and associations of European institutions of Higher VET in the project, ApprenticeshipQ has the potential to reach a wide impact, and ensure uptake of its processes amongst both enterprises and HVET institutions.

This in turn will lead to improved quality management and hence improved quality of apprenticeships in Higher VET around Europe, which should in turn increase the attractiveness of HVET as an educational pathway.

At the inaugural meeting, we focused on the areas of cooperation, the profile and the role of stakeholders, the terminology, as well as the procedures for involving stakeholders. At the conclusion of the meeting, the partners prepared a schedule for further activities and responsible persons for certain activities.