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The European e-Competence Framework (e-CF) is a common reference tool developed by IT industry related experts and stakeholders from many countries under the umbrella of the CEN Workshop on ICT Skills. The Framework provides a reference of 40 competences as required and applied at the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) workplace. By using a common language for competences, skills and proficiency levels the framework can be understood across Europe and globally. As the first sector-specific implementation of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF), e-CF provides a basic, clear and sound orientation about e-competences for companies and all type of organizations in the public and private sector who need to take decisions about recruitment, career paths, training, curricula assessment, etc.

The main objective of the e-Competences method is to provide clear picture to all stakeholders – academic, business, enrolled students and applicants – for qualitative comparison between the university outputs and market requirements. The methodology will support and facilitate the effective inclusion of national higher education systems in European Higher Education Area and Bologna Process initiatives for quality assurance of higher education.

The implementation of the method supports the academic community in the improvement and alignment of the current programs and courses to the needs of ICT industry and e-Competence Framework. Resulting in practical changes and improvements in the university curricula, the method provides better compliance between the demand of the industry and University programs. e-Competence Framework was used as a common language and job profiles were used as referent profile for both university and business. The service provided by ESI CEE compares objectively the following 3 perspectives:
  • Actual profile of a job position in a company representing the industry demand
  • Corresponding ICT job profile in e-CF representing the reference model, and
  • Aggregated profile of the university program created by the profiles of essential courses included in the program.

The three perspectives are compared in a specialized tool that can illustrate the gaps between the industry demand and the current programs of the universities. The main result of such comparison is that the program managers and courses’ instructors are able to launch and maintain a continuous process of program alignment with the needs of the industry and thus to eliminate the unwanted gaps between students’ qualification and the actual work requirements in the companies.

The overall process has 4 main steps:

Step 1 Take the EU best practices – learn and make relevant stakeholders aware of the e-Competence Framework.

Step 2 Gather the stakeholders from university and industry – program manager and courses’ instructors prepare aggregated profile of the university program created by the profiles of specialized courses included in the program using the e-Competence framework self assessment tool ( Industry representatives prepare actual profile of a job position in a real company using e-Competence framework self assessment tool.

Step 3 Map the profiles using bidirectional traceability between the industry demand and program profiles and identify gaps.

Step 4 Improve the university program to effectively address the identified gaps.

Related services provided by ESI Center Eastern Europe:
  • Mapping ICT related university curricula to e-CF;
  • Proposals for changes in ICT related university curricula according e-CF references;
  • Mapping ICT related lifelong learning vocational training curricula to e-CF;
  • Tools for bi-directional mapping and evaluation.

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European Skills, Competences, Qualifications and Occupations (ESCO)

ESI CEE is part of the Reference Group for ICT service activities in ESCO. Reference Groups are Commission expert groups that develop the contents of the ESCO classification and are the most important contributors to the revision of ESCO. The Reference Croups are responsible for cross-sector skills and competences, cross-sectoral qualifications and other cross-sectoral aspects.
ESCO is the multilingual classification of European Skills, Competences, Qualifications and Occupations.
The Commission services launched the project in 2010 with an open stakeholder consultation. DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion and DG Education and Culture – supported by the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (Cedefop) – jointly coordinate the development of ESCO. Stakeholders are closely involved in the development and dissemination of ESCO.
The ESCO classification identifies and categorizes skills, competences, qualifications and occupations relevant for the EU labor market and education and training. It systematically shows the relationships between the different concepts. ESCO has been developed in an open IT format, is available for use free of charge by everyone and can be accessed via the ESCO portal.
The first version of ESCO was published on 23 October 2013. This release marks the beginning of the pilot and testing phase, including the ESCO mapping pilot. Until 2017 the classification will be completely revised. The final product will be launched as ESCO v1.

More information about ESCO:

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