Partnerships for cooperation in vocational education and training

This action enables participating organisations to gain experience in international cooperation and to strengthen their capacities, but also to produce high-quality innovative deliverables.

What types of activities are supported in these projects?

Organisations have the flexibility to choose the best combination that contributes to reaching the project’s objectives in relation to its scope and in proportion to the capacities of the partnership.

These activities refer to the implementation of project activities (networking events, meetings, conferences, working sessions to to exchange practices and to develop results, staff and learner trainings etc.), project management and promotion activities.

Are there specific areas or topics these projects should address?

Projects are required to frame their activities within one or more priorities, which are prescribed annually by the European Commission, and to choose them at the application stage.

In the 2023 Call for proposals, Partnerships for Cooperation must address at least one priority from the list you can find bellow.

In addition, national agencies responsible for managing the Erasmus+ Programme may identify one or more of these European priorities as particularly relevant for the national context.

Priorities applying to all Erasmus+ sectors

The Programme will support projects that promote social inclusion and aim at improving the outreach to people with fewer opportunities, including people with disabilities and people with a migrant background, as well as people living in rural and remote areas such as outermost regions, people facing gender inequalities, socio-economic difficulties or any other potential source of discrimination based on sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation. These projects will help addressing the barriers faced by these groups in accessing the opportunities offered by the programme, as well as contributing to creating inclusive environments that foster equity and equality, and that are responsive to the needs of the wider community. Under this priority, the Programme will support projects that promote educational activities and facilitate the integration of people fleeing the war in Ukraine into their new learning environments.

The Programme aims to support, across all sectors, awareness raising about the green transition, environmental and climate-change challenges. Priority will be given to projects aimed at developing competences in various sustainability-relevant sectors, developing green sectorial skills strategies and methodologies, as well as future-oriented curricula that better meet the needs of individuals. The Programme will also support the testing of innovative practices to prepare learners, staff and youth workers to become true agents of change (e.g. save resources, reduce energy use and waste, compensate carbon footprint emissions, opt for sustainable food and mobility choices, etc.). Priority will also be given to projects that – through education, training, youth and sport activities – enable behavioural changes for individual preferences, consumption habits, and lifestyles, in line with the New European Bauhaus initiative146; develop sustainability competences of educators and education leaders and support the planned approaches of the participating organisations regarding environmental sustainability.

The Programme will support digital transformation plans of primary, secondary, vocational education and training (VET), higher, and adult education institutions. Priority will be given to projects aiming to increase the capacity and readiness of institutions to manage an effective shift towards digital education. The Programme will support the purposeful use of digital technologies in education, training, youth and sport for teaching, learning, assessment and engagement. This includes the development of digital pedagogy and expertise in the use of digital tools for teachers, including accessible and assistive technologies and the creation and innovative use of digital education content. Equally, it includes developing the digital skills and competences of all the population through appropriate programmes and initiatives. Particular attention will be given to promoting gender equality and addressing differences in relation to the access and use by underrepresented groups. The Programme will further support the use of the European frameworks on digital competences of educators, citizens and organisations.

The Programme will support active citizenship and ethics in lifelong learning; it will foster the development of social and intercultural competences, critical thinking and media literacy. Priority will also be given to projects that offer opportunities for people’s participation in democratic life, social and civic engagement through formal or non-formal learning activities, such as for example activities raising awareness about and promoting participation in the 2024 elections to the European Parliament. The focus will also be on raising awareness on and understanding the European Union context, notably as regards the common EU values, the principles of unity and diversity, as well as their cultural identity, cultural awareness and their social and historical heritage.

Specific priorities in the field of vocational education and training

This includes supporting the development of VET programmes that offer a balanced mix of vocational skills and create work-based learning opportunities well aligned to all economic cycles, evolving jobs and working methods and key competences. Projects will support VET providers in the adaptation of their training offer to changing skills needs, green and digital transitions and economic cycles.

This priority supports initiatives that develop flexible and learner-centred VET programmes, and that contribute to closing existing gaps in the access to training for working age adults to successfully manage labour market transitions. Projects under this priority also contribute to the development of continuing vocational training programmes designed to be adaptable to labour market, as well as programmes that facilitate the transfer, recognition and accumulation of learning outcomes leading to national qualifications.

This priority supports projects which core aim is to substantially change the way in which VET is practiced, making it more relevant to the current and future needs of the economy and society. These changes can be organizational, they can also address teaching and learning processes, as well as the VET providers ecosystem and the way they engage with partners (for example, through technology diffusion and applied research, advocacy, networking and internationalization activities). They can also target the development and provision of VET products and services to external actors such as students, companies and governments.

Priority will be given to projects that contribute to increasing the attractiveness of VET at different levels. Examples of these can be projects that work towards greater permeability between diverse educational levels, that foster open and participative learning environments,

support the professional development of VET teachers and trainers, or facilitate recognition of learning outcomes and the use of Europass and other digital services. This priority also support projects that develop long-term partnerships for establishing or reinforcing international, national, regional and sectoral skills competitions. The impact of these activities can be optimised by working closely together with businesses, VET providers, chambers of commerce and other relevant stakeholders.

This priority focuses on measuring and improving quality of VET by developing national quality assurance systems, for both initial and continuing VET. In particular, this includes setting-up and testing graduate tracking arrangements in line with the Council Recommendation on tracking graduates, and the Recommendation on the European Quality Assurance Reference Framework for Vocational Education and Training (EQAVET), as well as exploring EU vocational core profiles, and micro-credentials.

This priority aims at putting in place support mechanisms and contractual frameworks to promote quality mobility of VET staff and learners. Particularly important aspects include automatic mutual recognition of qualifications and learning outcomes, as well as developing student support services for learner mobility. Such services can include informing, motivating, preparing and facilitating the social integration of the VET learners in the host country, as well as enhancing their intercultural awareness and active citizenship.

Additional aspects

In addition to the formal criteria, project proposals should pay attention to the following aspects:

  • Inclusion and diversity – organisations should devise accessible and inclusive project activities, taking into account the needs as well as the opinions of participants with fewer opportunities;
  • Environment and sustainability – projects should encourage all participants to learn and discuss the issues related to the environment, as well as to find alternative, greener ways of implementing project activities;
  • Digital dimension – virtual cooperation as well as experimenting with virtual or blended learning possibilities is encouraged.
  • Participation and civic engagement – projects should offer opportunities for people’s participation in democratic life, social and civic engagement.
Types of projects

Depending on the project objectives, participating organisations and the expected impact, these projects can be of different sizes and scope. Accordingly, there are two types of partnerships:

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