What is ECVET?

The European Credit System for Vocational Education and Training (ECVET) is one of the instruments of Copenhagen Declaration approved on 30 November 2002, on enhanced European cooperation in VET across Europe.

ECVET was formalized in 2009 with the Recommendation of the European Parliament and with the Council of 18 June 2009, on the establishment of a European Credit System for Vocational Education and Training.


The Recommendation states the following:

ECVET is a technical framework for the transfer, recognition and, where appropriate, accumulation of individuals’ learning outcomes with a view to achieving a qualification. ECVET tools and methodology comprise the description of qualifications in terms of units of learning outcomes with associated points, a transfer and accumulation process and complementary documents such as learning agreements, transcripts of records and ECVET users’ guides.

ECVET is intended to facilitate the transfer, recognition and accumulation of assesed learning outcomes of individuals who are aimining to achieve a qualification. This will improve the general understading of citizen’s learning outcomes and their transparency, transnational mobility and portability across, and where appropriate, within Member States in a boardereless lifelong area, and will also improve the mobility and portability of qualifications at the national level between various sectors of the economy and within the labour market.

In addition the 2009 Recommendation, clarifies that ECVET is based on the following key principles[1]:

  1. Units of learning outcomes
  2. Transfer and Accumulation of learning outcomes, ECVET partnerships
  3. Learning Agreements and personal transcript
  4. ECVET points



[1] For a more detailed understaning of ECVET please refer to RECOMMENDATION OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 18 June 2009 on the establishment of a European Credit System for Vocational Education and Training (ECVET).

Louiza Papaloizu