In order to move the commitments in the Belém Framework for Action forward, the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning, on behalf of UNESCO, took the initiative to develop with Member States the UNESCO Guidelines on the Recognition, Validation and Accreditation (RVA) of the Outcomes of Non-formal and Informal Learning (UIL, 2012). The UNESCO Guidelines were developed through a participatory process involving consultation with 42 Member States to reflect their experience and diverse needs, followed by professional advice from an Expert Group comprising representatives of each of the regions and of leading international agencies. It also reflected insights from studies on RVA policy and practice. The UNESCO Guidelines were launched and made accessible to all Member States in 2012.
The present document, entitled Synthesis Report on Recognition, Validation and Accreditation of Non-Formal and Informal Learning in UNESCO Member States, was the principal source (knowledge base document) for the UNESCO Guidelines. It set out to promote and strengthen mutual learning and to facilitate collaboration between Member States where interest is growing in the development of recognition practices and flexible mechanisms of transition between levels and systems of education. The report comparatively analyses a series of case studies in order to promote and share knowledge, ideas and experiences in different contexts, and to advocate for the importance of recognising the value of non-formal and informal learning.