Nairobi: Making National Qualifications Frameworks (NQF) operational in a changing world (part I)

Capacity Development and networking programme 2023: programme of 3 workshops - in Nairobi, Accra, Maputo. The training program of the project ACQF-II in 2023 contributes to enhance knowledge and understanding on the development and operationalization of NQFs: moving from initial ideas to policies, and from policies to action. Refer to the Agenda for all details. Start-end: 09.00 - 17.00 East Africa time.

Nairobi Training Workshop

09-11 October 2023, from 09.00 to 17.00 (East Africa time)

For your information and preparation:

Theme of the training programme 2023: “Making National Qualifications Frameworks (NQF) operational in a changing world.”

The number of countries in Africa with NQFs at stage of development and consultation, and at stage of implementation has been growing in the last years – approx. 33 countries can be included in this group. On the other side, many countries are at initial stage of reflection regarding their future NQF. Among countries with longstanding NQF implementation experience, the majority are reviewing and improving important aspects and instruments of the NQF, enabling their responsiveness to changing needs and learning. NQFs are not set in stone, they adapt.

NQFs are evolving, widening their scope, and engaging with digitalization. Learning in all contexts (including non-formal and informal) matters more than ever, as the transformation of work, technologies and greening of the economy requires faster re- and up-skilling, flexible acquisition of credentials for lifelong learning and work, and transparent qualifications based on quality and trusted provision at all levels of the NQF. Responsive and effective NQFs contribute to the SDG-4 and 8, and to the wider objectives of skills revolution, social inclusion, and improved employability for all categories of the population.

The project ACQF-II (2023-end 2026) is structured to deliver on three key outcomes:

  1. Output 1: Capacity development, networking, and mutual learning.
  2. Output 2: Support to countries and regions: NQF development and implementation.
  3. Output 3: Governance and implementation capacity: Governance set-up. ACQF Qualifications and Credentials Platform. Referencing NQF-ACQF. Common profiles of qualifications

In 2023 the project ACQF-II organises two training workshops (Nairobi and Accra) and the annual conference (Maputo). These events will be multilingual and streamed. The relevant national NQF authorities are committed and motivated to co-host these events.

  • Nairobi, 09-11 October
  • Accra, 7-8 November
  • Maputo, 5-6 December

Participants include institutions responsible for the coordination and management of NQFs, Regional Economic Communities (IGAD and SADC), organisations responsible for quality assurance in education and training (CAMES, IUCEA, GQAA), All-Africa Students Union, UNESCO, and experts. Countries represented: Angola, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Djibouti, Eswatini, Mozambique, Democratic Republic of Congo, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, and South Sudan. Also participating are the two co-chairs of the ACQF Advisory Group (Cameroon and SADC) and countries with globally recognised NQF experience (South Africa – SAQA) and Kenya (KNQA).

The three events share a common thematic agenda, based on the following main themes:

  1. NQF in a changing world: Development, implementation, monitoring and review / adaptation. NQF instruments and processes, quality assurance.
  2. Registration of qualifications in NQF / register – benchmarking.
  3. Qualifications are changing. Adaptation to green and digital transformation, digitalization, new types of credentials.
  4. Validation and recognition of learning outcomes and skills / competences from different contexts of learning. Skills and competences of labour migrants and refugees.
  5. Micro-credentials: new opportunities for flexible pathways, lifelong learning, employability, and career development. A global movement.
  6. Shaping comparability of qualifications and credentials to facilitate portability, recognition of qualifications, and mutual trust.
  7. Governance of skills and qualifications ecosystems: governance models, linked policies, information and analysis, stakeholders’ participation, and comparisons between NQFs-RQFs and ACQF. Complementarities between Addis Recognition Convention, ACQF, NQFs.
  • When Oct 09, 2023 06:00 AM to Oct 11, 2023 02:00 PM (UTC / UTC0)
  • Where Nairobi (Kenya)
  • Contact Name
  • Add event to calendar iCal

Draft agenda Training Workshop 1 – Nairobi (09-11 October 2023)

“Making NQFs operational in a changing world – part 1”

Multilingual workshop (EN-FR-PT)

Day 1, 09 October: National Qualifications Frameworks: essential components

Chair: Director General of KNQA 

Time: East Africa


Session 1: Opening session - Ministry, KNQA, AUC, EU Delegation (Kenya), ACQF-II coordination

  • Opening and welcome remarks
  • Introduction of the participants
  • Agenda, expectations. Wider context of ACQF-II training programme


Session 2:  National Qualifications Framework - from needs and objectives to development, approval, and implementation.

  • Presentation, Q&A.
  • 2 countries sharing experiences - path, challenges, and new perspectives: Kenya, Somalia, Democratic Republic of Congo
  • Comparison, main conclusions.

11.15-11.45: Coffee break


Session 3: Monitoring and evaluation of NQFs. Reviewing the NQF.

  • Q&A.
  • Case study: Seychelles – review of the NQF

13.15-14.15: Lunch break


Session 4: Registration of qualifications in the NQF. Criteria, methods, challenges. Benchmarking.

  • Q&A
  • 2 countries share their policy, methods, and instruments: Kenya, South Africa.
  • Comparison - in groups. Conclusions.

16.45-17.00: poll - rapid assessment of day 1.

Day 2, 10 October: Skills, competences, and qualifications matter – all learning counts

Time: East Africa


Session 5: Validation of learning outcomes: focus on RPL. What's new?

  • Presentation, Q&A
  • Cases: Kenya, Zambia. New European Guidelines on Validation of non-formal and informal learning.
  • Comparison: important similarities, distinctive orientations and common ground for possible approximation of approaches and methods.

11.30-12.00: coffee break


Session 6: Qualifications are changing. What's new?

  • Q&A.
  • Micro-credentials – overview. Discussion - inputs supporting further ACQF work on this topic.
  • Addressing emerging skills, focus on digital and green skills.

13.15-14.00: lunch break


Session 7: NQF Governance. Visit to headquarters of Kenya National Qualifications Authority

  • Introduction to KNQA
  • Mission, functions, activities. Strategy.
  • Register / database of qualifications
  • Main achievements and perspectives going forward.

17.15: Return to hotel

Day 3, 11 Oct: ACQF - a catalyst to support operational NQFs and relevant policies.

Time: East Africa


(Includes coffee break: 10.30-11.00)

Session 8: Quality assurance of qualifications and qualifications frameworks: a round of African experiences and instruments

  • Global Quality Assurance Association
  • Quality Assurance at regional level: IUCEA
  • Quality Assurance of Higher education Qualifications: Ghana, GTEC
  • Quality Assurance of Higher education Qualifications: Senegal, ANAQ-Sup
  • Quality Assurance of TVET qualifications: Cabo Verde, UC-SNQ

Comparison - in groups. Discussion

10.30-11.00: coffee break


Session 9: ACQF - a catalyst to support development and expansion of the NQF, RPL, Credit systems, and information-sharing on qualifications and qualifications frameworks.

  • Linkages between NQFs and recognition of foreign qualifications. Way forward in cooperation with the Addis Recognition Convention.
  • Tools to develop and expand RPL: Campaign, policy, guidelines, Handbook for practitioners, training workshop.
  • Digitalisation: ACQF Qualifications Platform

13.00-14.00: lunch break


Continuation and conclusion of session 9

  • Transparency and information-sharing: inventory of NQFs, RPL and micro-credentials
  • ACQF Technical Notes: overview of planned work. Your recommendations and needs.
  • ACQF communication and advocacy. Role of focal points.


Session 10: Assessment of participants’ learning outcomes. Case studies: NQF development. RPL. Registration of qualifications. Participants’ evaluation of the workshop.


Final conclusions, next steps. Closure.