A new report comparing the qualifications frameworks, levels, and quality assurance arrangements will help support more transparent and consistent recognition of qualifications between European Union Member States and New Zealand.

Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Paul Goldsmith, and European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, Marianne Thyssen, announced the release of the report, titled ‘Comparative Analysis of the EQF and the NZQF: Joint Technical Report’, this week.

“The comparative analysis has established a relationship between levels of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) and the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF),” Mr Goldsmith says.

“It provides information to promote greater understanding of qualifications and learning outcomes between European Union Member States and New Zealand.”

Ms Thyssen says that the improved understanding of the two frameworks may result in better informed decisions on the recognition of qualifications, and contribute to improved student and labour mobility between European Union Member States and New Zealand.

The report will support transparent and consistent recognition decisions by education providers and employers in New Zealand and among the European Union Member States.

Cooperation between the European Union and New Zealand is founded on strong historical and cultural links.

“Both the European Union and New Zealand share similar goals in ensuring learners develop the skills needed in the 21st century,” says Ms Thyssen.

“The project to compare the EQF and NZQF can help to further strengthen the existing relationship between the European Union and New Zealand,” Mr Goldsmith says.

This work aligns with the New Zealand Government’s vision of developing and sustaining mutually beneficial education relationships with key partner countries.

Despite the differences in nature between both frameworks, the comparative analysis has proved it possible to compare them. The NZQF dates back to 1992 and is one of the first qualifications frameworks in the world. It is an overarching national qualifications framework, comprising information on quality assured qualifications in New Zealand. It is designed to optimise recognition of educational achievement and its contribution to New Zealand’s economic, social and cultural success. The EQF was established in 2008 as a regional common reference framework with the purpose of improving the transparency, comparability and portability of qualifications in Europe. Thirty-two European National Qualifications Frameworks have been referenced to the EQF.

While the outcomes of the comparative analysis process do not entitle any holder of a European or New Zealand qualification to claim automatic recognition, the report provides clear information to support qualifications recognition decisions.

The report can be accessed here.

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