European Commission logo
Create an account

List of Resources

Why choose the Resource path?

The 'Resource path' was created for users who would simply like to access the resources that were used for the development of the OER for different reasons. They may have already gone through the sequence of guided steps (i.e. Text path) and would like to return to the materials. By visiting the Resource path, it is also easier for readers to consult main resources again, as going through the steps imply multiple clicks, whereas Resource path provides one with a direct presentation of the resource items.

The list below is divided according to the chapters and includes all EPALE resources that were referred to in the text, and additionally users can find further documents that were not covered in the Text path. By clicking on the chapter titles, users can access the detailed chapter page directly. 


Chapter 1 on Policy Framework


European policy context 

New Skills Agenda for EuropeThis source serves as a general compass to European policy initiatives and programmes in the field of skills, qualification frameworks, VET, etc. The website presents 10 policy actions adopted by the European Commission since 2016. Users can find essential information on the development of skills initiatives of the Commission and access further documents in this field.

Adult Education and Training in Europe: Widening Access to Learning OpportunitiesThe presented studies are based on the European Commission's policy network of experts i.e. Eurydice. This study from 2015 provides a comprehensive overview of policies and data related to the renewed European agenda for adult learning. They imply measeures that address adult learners, in particular those with low basic skills or insufficient qualifications.

Adult Education and Training in Europe: Programmes to raise achievement in basic skillsThe country description presents readers with an inventory of adult basic education and basic skills programmes in the form of 35 system descriptions covering 32 countries. The data used in this publication covered a range of areas related to learning opportunities for adults with low basic skills, or low level or no qualifications. Large-scale programmes intended to support adults in acquiring basic skills were in the centre of enquiry.


Upskilling Pathways 

Council Recommendation on Upskilling PathwaysThe official source of the Recommendation (available in multiple languages).

The Upskilling Pathways Recommendation websiteVisit the European Commission's official website for Upskilling Pathways to access a wide range of updated resources. The webpage contains information on the basic aims, target groups, main steps, funding schemes, policy background and related documents & links of the recommendation. For a detailed presentation download Key ideas of the Upskilling Pathways Recommendation (2017) pdf from here or the website's the Related documents section. For a short well-illustrated information leaflet, click on the link or download it from the website's Related documents section. 

Presentation of Martina Ní CheallaighMartina Ní Cheallaigh, head of unit in charge of VET, Apprenticeships and Adult Learning (European Commission, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion) presents data on low-skilled adults in the European context and describes the 3-step approach inherent to the Upskilling Pathways recommendation. Her presentation additionally provides insights into challenges and enabling conditions for the implementation of the initiatives of Upskilling Pathways.


EPALE tools  

EPALE offers a tool for users to access data on adult learning and continuing vocational education and training (CVET). It provides a central point of reference for monitoring and improving policy and performance in adult learning. The tool can be used for the followings:

  • Map and compare the progress of your country in implementing its adult learning policies
  • Identify areas where further progress could be made in order to improve your national or regional policies
  • Monitor your country's performance in increasing participation in adult learning
  • Find out more about the study which informed this tool and the resources used

Policy Analysis ToolCountry Profiles


Other sources 

OECD Skills StrategyThis website gives access to a range of skills-related resources and programmes by OECD. From the PIAAC to National Skills Strategies, OECD is also playing a considerable part in addressing skills on the policy level. On the link above, users may access country-specific diagnostic and action reports on National Skills Strategies.


Resources by Education and Training 2020 Working Group on Adult Learning (2014-2015)

Policies to increase participation of adults in activities aimed at raising basic skills - Synthesis of country reportsThis source provides a synthesis of reports submitted by members of the ET 2020 Working Group on Adult Learning. The document is based on brief overviews of national and/or regional policies that aimed at involving adults into activities improving basic skills. One of the values of this document is that it collects and presents a number of success factors gathered by actors in basic skills policy that were, as the text says, "leading to better outcomes for learners" (p. 25). 

Report on an in-depth country workshop on effective policies for increasing participation of adults in basic skills provision The report is based on a country workshop organised by the ET 2020 Working Group on Adult Learning in the topic of inclusion of adults in basic skills provision. During the four-day long intensive event experts from 12 countries from Europe discussed how to build policies that effectively increase adult participation in programs aiming at improving basic skills, which is an identified policy challenge of the Working Group. Through the discussion of the policy context, the workshop reviewed the available research evidence in the field. 

Support for the work on policy guidance on basic skills for adults - Report of findingsThis study provides the Commission with input to inform policy discussions on adult basic skills. Equally, it can serve to provide Member States and stakeholders with policy guidance and good practice examples in order to increase policy effectiveness, with a focus on enhancing such learning opportunities for adults who lack basic skills and those who left initial education prematurely. 

Improving policy and provision for adult learning in EuropeThe report puts forward the Working Group's main messages and summarises its work. Some elements of these messages concern the followings:

  • Adult learning's effect on lives and economies
  • The need for raising adults' basic skills
  • Promoting adult participation in basic skills provision, etc. 


Chapter 2 on Basic Skills and Intergated Policy


EBSN's thematic scope on basic skillsEBSN (European Basic Skills Network) provides a thematic scope on its website (and through its materials) to basic skills. To learn more about the scope, please visit the link above.

Developing SkillsOn details regarding European Commission's perspectives on skills (basic skills, transversal skills, etc.) visit its website on developing skills. Additionally, users can find further information and resources on competence frameworks, related events and documents. 

Life Skills Approach in Europe (summary of the LSE analysis)The LSE project aims to improve basic skills provision in Europe by explaining, further developing and upscaling the life skills approach. The project final beneficiaries are people from a disadvantaged background, refugees and people resistant to 'foreigners' and intercultural exchange. For background information, see the news article about the project's website and documentations. Follow the link for the final report of the project. 

NALA's (National Adult Literacy Agency, Ireland) approach to basic skillsWhen defining "literacy", some European actors prefer to use the term to involve all relevant basic skills. This is the case of Ireland. Please visit the link to the National Adult Literacy Agency to find more details on how NALA defines literacy. 

Epale Blog post of David Mallows on literacy issueDavid Mallows has 30 years of experience in adult education as a teacher, teacher trainer, manager and researcher. He was previously Director of Research at the National Research and Development Centre for adult literacy and numeracy (NRDC) at the UCL Institute of Education, London and currently represents the European Basic Skills Network in EPALE as thematic coordinator for Life Skills. 

Presentation on policy coherenceLacking basic skills is a multilateral challenge. It can be addressed from different perspectives like social inclusion, education, labour market, health or local versus national or European perspectives. Creation of accordance in between approaches and synergies of measures is really a coordination stunt. But what does coherence in between policies mean and why is it important and why is it important in basic skills provision? How can policy coherence be created and what are the hindering factors? All these questions were in the centre of the inspiring keynote speech of David Mallows at the EBSN's Annual Collaborative Workshop 3-5 June, 2015 held in The Hague, The Netherlands.

For a video interview, please follow the link: Interview with David Mallows on policy coherence.In the interview, further references were made to other presentations at the workshop in The Hague. Users can access those presentations at this link: Presentations from EBSN Annual Collaborative Workshop 2015 on EBSN's website. 


Chapter 3 on EBSN's Berlin Declaration


The website of EBSN (European Basic Skills Network)EBSN's vision is to make sure that all inhabitants of Europe have the level of basic skills they need to have access to lifelong learning, and to ensure their employability and be active citizens. Visit the Network's website for project reports, policy briefs, related events and special interest groups in the field of basic skills.

EBSN Berlin DeclarationDuring the Eropean Basic Skills Network’s annual conference in Berlin in 2018, EBSN members and other participants agreed on a conference declaration summing up the network’s recommendations on how European policy-makers should work for the development of coherent, cohesive and adequately financed national policies to implement the Upskilling Pathways initiative.

Interview with Satya BrinkSatya Brink is a policy researcher who, as the director of research on lifelong learning in the Canadian Government, conducted much research on adult learning with her team. She was also the co-chair of the OECD Governing Board for PIAAC, also known as the Survey of Adult skills. She now works as an international consultant. We were interested in what opportunities and strategies she sees for supporting basic skills policies nationally and internationally. This interview was conducted by Graciela Sbertoli, Secretary General of the European Basic Skills Network.

OECD's Adult Skills in Focus 7The 7th issue of OECD's Adult Skills in Focus series concentrates on the question: How much will the literacy level of the working-age population change from now to 2022?


Chapter 4 on New Policy: Planning and Implementation


Case study: Italy

Interview with Claudio VitaliExpert of the Italian National Institute for Public Policy Analysis, Claudio Vitali talks about the importance of effective stakeholder cooperation in policy-making. 


Case study: Norway

Towards and effective skills strategy for NorwayThe Norwegian Ministry for Education and Research created a document to summarise and present the experiences of developing a national strategy for skills in Norway. The document relates to the European New Skills Agenda. 

Norwegian Strategy for Skills Policy 2017-2021The new strategy of Norway ensures that individuals and businesses have the skills that give Norway a competitive business sector, an efficient and sound public sector, and an inclusive labour market.


Case study: England (and Wales)

The Citizens' CurriculumThis website gives a detailed introduction and a variety of resources to the approach that is called Citizens' Curriculum developed by the Learning and Work Institute in the UK. This approach provides an innovative and a holistic tool to make sure that everyone has the English, maths, digital, civic, health and financial capabilities they need.

Learning and Work InstituteThe Institute is an independent policy and research organisation dedicated to lifelong learning, full employment and inclusion.

Presentation by Alex Stevenson on the Citizens' CurriculumAlex Stevenson is the head of Head of English, Maths and ESOL, National Learning and Work Institute, England and Wales. In his presentation, he gives an overview on the background and concept of Citizens' Curriculum and the results of the piloting phase and three different fields of application of the approach. The presentation also includes links to further content and resources.

Phase 2 Project Report on Citizens' CurriculumThis report was made by Alex Stevenson, Charlotte Robey and Sarah Downes in October 2016. The document reports on 13 pilots that were to establish the added value of the Citizens' Curriculum. The reason why this report on phase two is presented here, is that it involved pilots in contexts not included within the scope of the first piloting phase i.e. English and maths provision for unemployed adults and in the workplace. 


Case study: Germany

National Decade for Literacy and Basic SkillsThis document is a general agreement based on the National Strategy for Literacy and Basic Skills of Adults in Germany (2012-2016) launched by the German Federal and State Governments. The source gives details on the National Decade for Literacy and Basic Skills initiative in terms of the involved partners, the objectives and recommendations for action. 

Blog post by Timm Helten on Alpha-DekadeThis English EPALE blog entry by Timm Helten presents the Alpha-Dekade initiative in the context of a study by the University of Hamburg on functional illiteracy in Germany and gives further details on how the National Decade for Literacy and Basic Skills addresses this issue. 


Case study: Ireland

Irish campaign to improve literacy and numeracy skills The EPALE news article informs readers about a public information campaign that aims at helping people to overcome issues in reading, writing, maths or technology. The campaign was launched in 7 September, 2018 by the Irish National Adult Literacy Agency (NALA) and it was named Take the first step.

Website of Take the first step campaignFor further details and a variety of multimedia content, please visit NALA's website. For a more targetted website, click here

National Adult Literacy and Numeracy Awareness CampaignThis a summary and evaluation report that was published in 6 June 2017 by SOLAS, the Further Education and Training Authority of Ireland and NALA. The campaign happened in September 2016. Read this material for further examples on how awareness raising campaigns are organised with a special attention to evaluation tools (campaign evaluation, responders survey, stakeholders' survey).  





The Capacity Building Series of EBSN provides free open educational resources (OERs) and massive online courses (MOOCs) through EPALE, to help the implementation of the European Commission recommendations on Upskilling pathways in EU Member States. EPALE is funded by the Erasmus+ programme, as part the European Commission’s ongoing commitment to improving the quality of adult learning provision in Europe. The project is implemented with the support of the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA).




Continue here:

Back to the main page

Login (1)
Themes addressed

Users have already commented on this article

Login or Sign up to join the conversation.

Want another language?

This document is also available in other languages. Please select one below.
Switch Language

Want to write a blog post ?

Don't hesitate to do so! Click the link below and start posting a new article!

Latest Discussions

Want to talk about Trainee programmes bringing graduating students to Balkan countries such as Montenegro, Albania, Kosovo and North Macedonia, instead of migrating from them?

Erasmus + Balkan exchange projects?

Want to talk about Trainee programmes bringing graduating students to Balkan countries such as Montenegro, Albania, Kosovo and North Macedonia, instead of migrating from them?