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Glossary

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  • individual learning account

    Definition: 

    System of public incentive to encourage access of adults to learning – for example those not already benefiting from publicly-funded education or training.

    Comments: 

    individual learning accounts aim to widen participation in professional and personal development by providing support, expressed in either money or time that learners can spend in the institutions of their choice.

    Source: 
    Cedefop, 2008.
  • informal learning

    Definition: 

    Learning resulting from daily activities related to work, family or leisure. It is not organised or structured in terms of objectives, time or learning support. Informal learning is in most cases unintentional from the learner’s perspective.

    Comments: 
    • informal learning outcomes may be validated and certified;
    • informal learning is also referred to as experiential or incidental/random learning.
    Source: 
    Cedefop, 2008.
  • information and communication technology (ICT)

    Definition: 

    Technology which provides for electronic input, storage, retrieval, processing, transmission and dissemination of information.

    Source: 
    Cedefop, 2004.
  • information and communication technology (ICT) skills

    Definition: 

    Skills needed for efficient use of information and communication technologies (ICT).

    Comments: 

    in a report on ICT skills and employment, OECD proposes a simple classification:

    • professional ICT skills: ability to use advanced ICT tools, and/or to develop, repair and create such tools;
    • applied ICT skills: ability to use simple ICT tools in general workplace settings (in non-IT jobs);
    • basic ICT skills or ‘ICT literacy‘: ability to use ICT for basic tasks and as a tool for learning.
    Source: 
    Cedefop, 2004; OECD, Lopez-Bassols, 2002.
  • initial education and training

    Definition: 

    General or vocational education and training carried out in the initial education system, usually before entering working life.

    Comments: 
    • some training undertaken after entry into working life may be considered as initial training (such as retraining);
    • initial education and training can be carried out at any level in general or vocational education (full-time school-based or alternance training) or apprenticeship pathways.
    Source: 
    Cedefop, 2008.
  • ISCED level 0 – Early childhood education

    Definition: 

    Programmes designed with a holistic approach to support children’s early cognitive, physical, social and emotional development and introduce young children to organized instruction outside of the family context.

    Comments: 

    programmes classified at ISCED level 0 are referred to in many ways across the world, for example early childhood education and development, play school, reception, pre-primary or pre-school or educación inicial.

    Source: 
    based on Unesco, 2011.
  • ISCED level 1 – Primary education

    Definition: 

    Programmes designed to provide learners with fundamental skills in reading, writing and mathematics (i.e. literacy and numeracy), and to establish a sound foundation for learning and understanding core areas of knowledge, personal and social development, preparing for lower secondary education.

    Comments: 

    programmes classified at ISCED level 1 are referred to in many ways across the world, e.g. primary education, elementary education or basic education (stage 1 / lower grades if an education system has one programme that spans ISCED levels 1 and 2).

    Source: 
    based on Unesco, 2011.
  • ISCED level 2 – Lower secondary education

    Definition: 

    Programmes designed to build upon the learning outcomes from ISCED level 1. Usually, the educational aim is to lay the foundation for lifelong learning and human development on which education systems may systematically expand further educational opportunities. Some education systems may already offer vocational education programmes at ISCED level 2 to provide individuals with skills relevant to employment.

    Comments: 

    programmes classified at ISCED level 2 are referred to in many ways across the world, for example secondary school (stage one / lower grades if there is nationally one programme that spans ISCED levels 2 and 3), junior secondary school, middle school or junior high school.

    Source: 
    based on Unesco, 2011.
  • ISCED level 3 – Upper secondary education

    Definition: 

    Programmes designed to complete secondary education in preparation for tertiary education, or to provide skills relevant to employment, or both.

    Comments: 

    programmes classified at ISCED level 3 are referred to in many ways across the world, e.g. secondary school (stage two / upper grades), senior secondary school or (senior) high school.

    Source: 
    based on Unesco, 2011.
  • ISCED level 4 – Post-secondary non-tertiary education

    Definition: 

    Programmes designed to provide individuals who completed ISCED level 3 with non-tertiary qualifications that they require for progression to tertiary education or for employment when their ISCED level 3 qualification does not grant such access.

    Comments: 

    programmes to be classified at ISCED level 4 are referred to in many ways across the world, e.g. technician diploma, primary professional education, préparation aux carrières administratives.

    Source: 
    based on Unesco, 2011.
  • ISCED level 5 – Short-cycle tertiary education

    Definition: 

    Programmes designed to provide participants with professional knowledge, skills and competences. Typically, they are practically based, occupationally specific and prepare students to enter the labour market. However, programmes may also provide a pathway to other tertiary education programmes.

    Comments: 

    programmes to be classified at ISCED level 5 are referred to in many ways across the world, e.g. master craftsman programme, (higher) technical education, community college education, technician or advanced/higher vocational training, associate degree or bac + 2 programmes.

    Source: 
    based on Unesco, 2011.
  • ISCED level 6 – Bachelor’s or equivalent level

    Definition: 
    Comments: 

    los países emplean distintas denominaciones para los programas clasificados en el nivel CINE 6, tales como, bachelor, licence o primer ciclo universitario.

    Source: 
    adaptado de Unesco, 2011.
  • ISCED level 7 – Master or equivalent level

    Definition: 

    Programmes designed to provide advanced academic and/or professional knowledge, skills and competences, leading to a second degree or equivalent qualification. Programmes at this level may have a substantial research component, but do not yet lead to the award of a doctoral qualification.

    Comments: 

    programmes to be classified at ISCED level 7 are referred to in many ways across the world such as Master’s programmes or magister.

    Source: 
    based on Unesco, 2011.
  • ISCED level 8 – Doctoral or equivalent

    Definition: 

    Programmes designed primarily to lead to an advanced research qualification. Programmes at this ISCED level are devoted to advanced study and original research and typically offered only by research-oriented tertiary educational institutions such as universities. Doctoral programmes exist in both academic and professional fields.

    Comments: 

    programmes to be classified at ISCED level 8 are referred to in many ways across the world such as PhD, DPhil, D.Lit, D.Sc, LL.D, Doctorate or similar terms.

    Source: 
    based on Unesco, 2011.