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Learning outcomes - from theory to practice

On 25 October 2011, the Academic Information Centre – Latvian NCP organized a learning workshop with title “Learning outcomes – from theory to practice” which was held in Riga. The seminar was attended by vocational secondary and higher education institutions representatives (teachers, deputy headmasters, school headmasters, programme directors, social partners and other professionals dealing with education programme development).

The workshop consisted of two parts: the first included presentations regarding the role of learning outcomes in various education sectors; and, during the second part the participants discussed the development of learning outcomes in vocational education and higher education in two working groups.

Mr. Andrejs Rauhvargers, Secretary General of the Latvian Rectors’ Council, in his presentation focused on the essence of learning outcomes and the necessity to introduce them in the Latvian education. Mr. A.Rauhvargers emphasized that knowing the intended learning outcomes learners, parents, employers and society in general has clearer understanding of the education process.

Mr. Uldis Sukovskis, Riga Technical University (RTU) study pro-rector, shared the experience of the Riga Technical University regarding the introduction of learning outcomes. Learning outcomes are included descriptions of the RTU study programmes, which are reviewed by the study programme commission of relevant sector, the faculty council, study department, and the study quality and study programme committee of Senate. As a tool for the implementation of learning outcomes, Mr. U.Sukovskis demonstrated the register of study courses, which also imparts the intended learning outcomes and their assessment.

Ms. Sarmite Valaine, director of Education Content Department – head of Vocational Education Content Provision Unit of the National Centre for Education, informed about the experience related to the intended outcomes that was obtained in terms of the ESF project “Development of sectoral qualifications system and increasing the efficiency and quality of vocational education” (Agreement No. 2010/0274/1DP/1.2.1.1.1/10/IPIA/VIAA/001). Ms. S.Valaine presented the planned changes in vocational education programme structure, modular approach, and explained the definition of lifelong learning competences in vocational education.

Mr. Jānis Zeimanis, teacher of Riga State Gymnasium No.1, focused on the students’ profile in the International Baccalaureate Programme that is provided nearly 20 years. The students’ profile evidently showed intended learning outcomes.

In two working groups participants had the opportunity to discuss the issues regarding the development and implementation of learning outcomes in vocational and higher education.

Workshop materials (in Latvian) are here.