Creating the Latvian NQF
The development of the Latvian Qualifications Framework started in 2009 and, similarly to the EQF, it consists of eight reference levels and imparts all stages and types of education.
Working group of the Ministry of Education and Science
In September 2009, the Ministry of Education and Science (MoES) formed a working group for linking Latvian qualifications system to the EQF in accordance with the Recommendation of the European Parliament and of the Council (23 April 2008) on the establishment of the European Qualifications Framework for lifelong learning. This working group mostly performed the tasks of a consulting and supervision, reviewing and approving level descriptors prepared by the experts prior elaborating the amendments to the Cabinet of Ministers Regulations.
Developing the LQF level descriptors
To prepare the descriptors of national
education levels, Academic Information Centre (AIC) and the Lifelong
Learning Development Division of the Policy Co-ordination Department of
MoES attracted specialists from the National Centre for Education, who,
on the basis of the national education standards, occupational standards
and study subjects standards, elaborated the education level
descriptors for general basic and secondary education, vocational basic and secondary education, as well as for vocational education.
These level descriptors are included in the Cabinet of Ministers Regulations (EN) and are based on learning outcomes expressed in three dimensions: knowledge (knowledge and comprehension); skills (ability to apply knowledge, communication, general skills); competence (analysis, synthesis and assessment).
At higher education level the working group established by the Latvian Rectors’ Council in 2009 prepared the education level descriptors for all Bologna cycle qualifications. These descriptions were formulated according to the European Higher Education Area (Bologna Process) Qualifications Framework; Bloom’s taxonomy, i.e. hierarchal system of six knowledge acquisition levels based on ideas of American psychologist Benjamin Bloom and his colleagues (1956); as well as to the EQF. The elaborated cycle descriptors were later integrated in the mentioned Cabinet of Ministers Regulations.
See Cycle descriptors for higher education (2009)
Consultations on the Latvian NQF The comparison of the Latvian education system and the EQF was presented and discussed in a conference on 14 February 2011. The debate of it continued till 31 March on the NCP website through comments and emails.
The draft of the Latvian Self-Assessment Report on referencing the Latvian education system to the EQF was presented and discussed during the international conference on April 27, 2011. And the debate continued in face-to-face and electronical discussions.
On 22 June 2011, the Academic Information Centre presented the 1st version of the national self-assessment report “Referencing of the Latvian Education System to the European Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning and the Qualifications Framework for the European Higher Education Area” (LV, EN) during the meeting of the European Qualifications Framework Advisory Group.
Regarding the comments and recommendations provided by the European Commission, Cedefop and international experts, AIC reviewed the Report. The updated version of the Report and the results of referencing were officially presented during the meeting of the EQF Advisory Group in October 2011 in Brussels.
After the meeting, some amendments were introduced in the Report “Referencing of the Latvian Education System to the EQF for Lifelong Learning and the QF-EHEA”, and the second version of the report is available here: LV EN.
In 2012 the Academic Information Centre organized a seminar “The role of social partners in developing the Latvian Qualifications Framework: problems and solutions” and there the issue of necessary improvements of the LQF was raised. Accordingly, in 2013 the Academic Information Centre conducted the study “Referencing of the Latvian Education System to the European Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning and the Qualifications Framework for the European Higher Education Area. Situation Assessment” on changes in the Latvian education system regarding the implementation of LQF and the necessary improvements in it. During the study the descriptors of levels 1-4 were analysed and recommendations regarding correspondence of different education levels and types to EQF/ LQF levels 1-4 were submitted for amendments in the Cabinet of Ministers Regulations No 990 “Regulations on the Latvian Education Classification”.
The study was presented in 2013 during the seminar “Latvian Qualifications Framework levels 1-4: development and enlargement”. As a result of it Proposals for changes in LQF levels 1-4 were elaborated and submitted to the Ministry of Education and Science. They were the basis for the amendments to the Vocational Education Law in 2015.