A Framework for Defining and Assessing Occupational and Training ??2010-05-061999-09-23A Framework...

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Transcript of A Framework for Defining and Assessing Occupational and Training ??2010-05-061999-09-23A Framework...

  • A Framework for Defining and Assessing Occupational and Training Standards

    in Developing CountriesInformation Series No. 386


    David H. FretwellWorld Bank

    Morgan V. LewisThe Ohio State University

    Arjen DeijEuropean Union-European Training Foundation

    World BankHuman Development Network Education Department

    Human Development Sector Unit Europe and Central Asia RegionWashington, DC

    ERIC Clearinghouse on Adult, Career, and Vocational EducationCenter on Education and Training for Employment

    College of EducationThe Ohio State University

    Columbus, Ohio

    European Training FoundationTurin, Italy


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    List of Figures


    Executive Summary


    Rationale for Developing Occupational Standards

    Definitions, Terminology, and Assumptions

    Stakeholder Involvement

    Labor Market Information and Analysis

    Developing Occupational Standards

    Assessing Occupational Standards

    Linking Occupational Standards with Training Standards

    Governance, Financing, and Administration

    Summary and Key Recommendations

    Appendices1. Defining Occupational Standards2. Linking Occupational and Training Standards3. Sample Occupational Standards Legislation4. Summary of Selected Standards Systems


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    1. Example of occupational employment across sectors

    2. Example of occupational employment within sectors

    3. Steps in the development of occupational and training standards

    4. Changes in sector employment between 1991 and 1997

    5. Translating occupational standards into training standards






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    The World Bank Human Development Network, the European Union (EU) EuropeanTraining Foundation, and the Educational Resources Information Center Clearinghouseon Adult, Career, and Vocational Education (ERIC/ACVE)1 cooperated in the develop-ment, financing, and publication of this paper. The paper was developed to respond toneeds expressed by human resource development practitioners in developed and develop-ing countries for more information on issues related to development of occupational andtraining standards. The ERIC/ACVE Clearinghouse, which is 1 of 16 clearinghouses in anational information system that is funded by the Office of Educational Research andImprovement (OERI), U.S. Department of Education, played a key role in the publica-tion process in order to fulfil one of its functionsinterpreting the literature in the ERICdatabase. This paper should be of interest to education, training, and labor market practi-tioners and graduate students in career and technical education and work force develop-ment.

    The authors are David Fretwell, Morgan Lewis, and Arjen Deij.

    David Fretwell is a Lead Employment and Training Specialist in the Europe and CentralAsia Region Human Development Sector Unit at the World Bank, where he has beeninvolved with design and supervision of employment and training sector analysis andprojects in the Region for the past 11 years. He just completed a secondment to theEuropean Union and has worked in about 30 countries, holding employment and trainingteam leader positions for projects in the Middle East (U.S. Department of Labor) and inAfrica (Canadian International Development Agency). He has vocational trainingexperience at the local, state, and national levels in the United States and Canada.

    Morgan V. Lewis is Coordinator of Need Sensing and Technical Assistance at the Na-tional Dissemination Center for Career and Technical Education, The Ohio State Uni-versity. He has conducted numerous projects related to planning, evaluation, and policyanalysis and has provided technical assistance to World Bank-funded projects in China,Kyrgyzstan, and Turkey.

    Arjen Deij, a Dutch national, has been working in technical assistance and cooperationin education with countries in transition since 1989. Since 1995 he has been with theEuropean Training Foundation, an agency of the European Union supporting vocationaleducation and training reform in 40 transition countries. Currently, he is the ETFProgramme Manager for Central Asia. He has been involved in a number of thematicareas (higher education reform, vocational education curriculum development, continu-

    1Note: The findings, interpretations, and conclusions expressed in this paper should not be attributed in anymanner to the Ohio State University, the EU European Training Foundation, the World Bank, affiliatedorganizations, or to members of its Board of Directors or the countries they represent, nor to other sponsor-ing institutions or to ministries or employment organizations in the participating countries. Opinionsexpressed are those of the authors who also bear responsibility for any errors.

    ing training in enterprises) and has been working on occupational and training standardsduring the last 3 years.

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    The authors wish to acknowledge the formal peer review and comment by RobertMansfield from the United Kingdom (Prime Research and Development), VictoriaCaprini from Romania (Council for Occupational Standards and AssessmentCOSA),and Toby Linden (World Bank), all of whom provided invaluable advice and assistanceon multiple drafts of the paper. In addition, the authors would like to thank the manyothers who provided informal but valuable input and advice, including HermannSchmidt from Germany (former Director of the Federal Institute for Vocational Educa-tion/Bundesinstitut fr BerufsbildungBiBB), Robert Norton from the United States(Center on Education and Training for Employment, the Ohio State University), andThomas Schroder from the European Union-European Training Foundation (ETF) inItaly. The authors also recognize the informal input, on the initial presentation of thispaper, from participants at the ETF-sponsored MASREG [Eastern Mediterranean]conference in Egypt, and the Multilateral Conference in Turin. For the ERIC Clearing-house, Susan Imel coordinated publication development and Sandra Kerka edited andformatted the manuscript.

    This project has been funded at least in part with Federal funds from the U.S. Depart-ment of Education under Contract No. ED-99-CO-0013. The content of this publicationdoes not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the U.S. Department of Education nordoes mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsementby the U.S. Government.

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    Executive SummaryExecutive SummaryExecutive SummaryExecutive SummaryExecutive Summary

    Occupational and training standards have economic and social outcomes and benefits.The link between human capital investment and productivity is well documented in whatis an increasing technological workplace, as are the linkages between the level of educa-tion and training, employment, wages, poverty, social inclusion, and cohesion. Individu-als with low educational levels need opportunities to improve their human capital if theyare to improve wages and their economic status and be able to engage more fully in civilsociety.

    Developing countries face a number of challenges, compared to developed countries, indesigning national occupational and training standards and related assessment systems.Developing countries need to select alternatives that are appropriate for local conditionsand that reflect the availability of resources to sustain the systems. A country may decideto start with pilot activities at the local level in high-priority occupations and sectors,then move to a national approach. Continued local development may lead to fragmenta-tion and duplication and may not promote internal and external labor mobility. Somenational leadership is needed.

    Stakeholdersincluding employers, professional associations, labor, and education andtraining institution representativesneed to be involved. Employer participation iscritical to ensure that the process is demand and output driven. Employer participationmay be difficult to maintain, particularly in countries where the informal and smallbusiness sector dominates. Multiple sources of labor market information should be usedto help define priorities for standards development. Medium-term qualitative employersurveys can provide economic and employment information in countries where othersources of data are not available.

    Occupational standards, or employment specifications, must be defined by employersfollowing procedures agreed upon by all stakeholders. Several approaches are used fordevelopment of these standards, and a country is advised to review each before beginningthe process. Developing countries should obtain occupational standards from otherdeveloped and developing countries for benchmarking purposes. A country may want toadapt selected standards for internal use, particularly those which are international inscope, to save resources, facilitate labor mobility, and promote inward investment. Assess-ments, or performance specifications, are used to evaluate and document what an indi-vidual can do as a result of formal or informal training. Training standards, or learningspecifications, are used to define curricula in training institutions. Leadership for design ofassessments and training standards can be from the training sector but the content mustbe based on occupational standards. These linkages are often weak in developing coun-tries.

    If a country decides to embark on development of national standards, stakeholder in-volvement must be formalized early in the process. Countries that embark on nationalstandards development need a long-term view as