German Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning (DQR)
The DQR represents the implementation at a national level of the Recommendation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the Establishment of a European Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning (EQF) of April 2008.
The DQR is an instrument for the alignment of qualifications in the German educational system. Its aims are to facilitate orientation in the German educational system and to assist with the comparability of German qualifications in Europe. In order to make it more transparent which competences are acquired in the German educational system, the DQR defines eight levels which can be aligned to the eight levels of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF). The EQF serves as a translation instrument which helps to make national qualifications more comprehensible across Europe.
The development of the DQR took place under the lead management of the Federal Government and the federal states as part of a process which extended over several years and featured continuous involvement on the part of the social partners, trade and industry organisations and further experts from academic research and practice. From the summer of 2013 onwards, the signing of the Joint Resolution on the German Qualifications Framework created a basis for the gradual alignment of qualifications to a DQR reference level and for the indication of such a level on qualifications certificates. A three-year course of vocational education and training is, for example, aligned to level 4, whereas a Bachelor, Masters or technician qualification is localised at level 6.
Alignment of educational and training courses takes place on an on-going basis. General educational courses are not currently aligned. At the beginning of 2012, the Federal Government, the federal states, the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs, the trade unions and the employers’ organisations decided to draw up joint educational standards and to explore the issue of alignment once more once such standards had been submitted and agreed.
The aim is for the next stage to involve integration into the DQR of learning outcomes from the non-formal sector. A group of experts is preparing proposals which will serve as the foundation for the further process in this regard.
This Internet site provides information on the objectives and structure of the DQR, on the benefits it offers for learners, workers, companies and educational establishments, on the qualification which have been aligned and on the further stages planned.