Lithuanian Association of Non-formal Education
Lithuanian Association for Non-formal Education (LiNA) was established in 2001 and since then is actively working with the validation and recognition of learning and competences.
At national level LiNA is for years playing an expert role advocating for the recognition of non-formal education within the youth work and education sectors. The association participated in working groups formed by the Ministry of Science and Education in Lithuania (Department of Youth Affairs). In the last 6 years LiNa contributed by developing a national youth workers’ qualification system and a national accreditation system for the providers of non-formal education services.
Since 2012, LiNA is actively involved in strategic partnerships aiming in building web based recognition systems by using the Open Badges technical standard. We were the lead partner in 2 long-term European projects which focused on developing badge-based recognition systems for competence development and validation of achievements for the youth.
The participants of our educational programs reflect their own learning processes and experiences, identify learning outcomes and make references to their working practice in organisations in the youth work sector and beyond.
Role in the Project and Added Value
Our main contribution is the transfer of know- how and good practice in the field of Validation of Learning with Open Badges. Open Badges are an innovative digital recognition tool that empowers learners and organisations to visually manage learning achievements and share them with the world.
During the last 2 years we were supported several organisation in Europe to develop and implement badge-based recognition systems to enhance chances of youth employment and/or support youth entrepreneurial capacity-building. We have also supported the validation of learning gained through volunteering for (a) the National Youth Department of the
Ministry of Education in Lithuania for the national volunteering scheme “Discover Yourself” and (b) The Red Cross in Germany.
Based on our expertise with the Open Badges System, we have agreed to the following responsibilities:
• Train and consult partners in developing badge-based validation and recognition systems for their Job Labs, Entrepreneurship Labs and other workshops for competence
• development of NEETs.
• Train and consult partners in developing tailor-made endorsement schemes for businesses/ employers to better recognise youth competence development and achievements.
• Share the technical expertise and knowledge of the technology of digital Open Badges and good practice examples of using badges for validation and recognition of learning
• Utilise expertise in designing and implementing competence assessment strategies and tools for validation and recognition of competences.
• Supervise the professional graphic design for badge images.
Being a partner in the Grundtvig Learning Partnership (2006-2008) on “Learning-to-Learn”, LiNA contributed and benefited from the research, training and products on the development of learning-to-learn competence in non-formal education programmes. This project was implemented together with members of the UNIQUE Network. The development of learning-to-learn competence is essential for the recognition of non-formal learning. Products: website learning2learn.eu ; Handbook for facilitators on learning to learn; Research report on learning to learn competence development.
LiNA hosted and was a partner in 2 Youth in Action projects “Non-formal learning: practice meets research” (2010 hosted in Lithuania, 2011 hosted in Finland). Both projects were developing research competences of facilitators involved in non-formal learning and youth work. The research was highlighted as the essential learning to collect evidences raising profile of non-formal learning in the current education systems. Products: numerous research designs applicable on the non-formal learning and youth work contexts.
In 2014-2015, the Association of Non-formal Education in Lithuania was the lead partner for the European large-scale project “UNIQUE Learning Badges”. This project enabled our organisation to create the platform that issue Open Badges. Open Badges are a digital recognition tool that empowers learners and organisations to visually manage learning achievements and share them with the world. As a follow-up of this project, we continued developing badge based recognition systems in cooperation with employers in the Erasmus+ KA2 (Strategic Partnerships) project “Trusted badge systems” (2015-2017).
LiNA is partner in the Erasmus+ KA2 project “European Badge Alliance” (2015-2017), led by UNISER and supporting several European organization in building recognition systems for international mobility projects in the fields of School education, VET mobility and European Voluntary Service. In order to build such systems, we share our expertise in designing assessment methodology, types of evidence that needs to be uploaded, adding elements of gamification and principles of non-formal education recognition.
Experience in the project topics: Youth Employment, Careers Advisory, Entrepreneurship Education, Validation of Learning
During the last 2 years we were training and consulting several organisation in other European countries helping them to develop and implement badge-based recognition systems to enhance chances of youth employment and/or support youth entrepreneurial capacity-building.
In Lithuania, we partnered with the National Youth Department helping them to develop and implement the badge-based validation and recognition system for the national volunteering scheme “Discover Yourself”.
National volunteering activities involve young people of 25 years old on average and those young people who are not in education, employment or training: https://www.badgewallet.eu/en/badge-systems/volunteering/
In Germany, we supported 2 organisations. One of them developed badge systems to validate organisational competence development of young people involved in national volunteering scheme at the Red Cross: https://www.badgewallet.eu/en/badge-systems/red-cross/
Another organisation developed a badge-based recognition system to support the development of cultural entrepreneurship skills of young people: https://www.badgewallet.eu/en/badge-systems/entrepreneurship/
In Netherlands, we supported partners who developed the badge-based recognition system which targets young people in the care situation and who develops competences through the participation in the decision management in the youth council structure: https://www.badgewallet.eu/en/badge-systems/participation/
We also played an expert role and supported other organisation in Europe by training and consulting them to design and implement badge-based recognition systems to validate learning and competence development of young people. All recognition systems were aiming at creating better employment opportunities for young people.
Here are examples of badge systems:
Badges to recognise learning and competence mobility in various types of European learning mobility: http://ebawebsite.net/
Other use cases of Badges for validation and recognition of learning and competences: https://issuu.com/nerijuskriauciunas/docs/open_badges_use_cases_ulb_2014
- SEAL CYPRUS
- Craftsmanship & SMEs Association
- Stratis Consulting
- Par – Respostas Sociais Association
- Lithuanian Association of Non-formal Education
- Youth Career and Advising Center
- Lodz Chamber of Industry and Commerce
- Initiative for Teaching Entrepreneurship
- Austrian Federal Economic Chamber