ACQF Guidelines

10 Guidelines and Training Modules to support countries, regions and AUC implementing the ACQF. Themes of the 10 ACQF Guidelines: learning outcomes approaches, defining NQF levels, referencing between NQFs and ACQF, validation of learning (RPL, credit systems, recognition of qualifications), quality assurance of qualifications, registration and registers of qualifications, monitoring and evaluation of NQFs, communication, innovation and technology in qualifications frameworks. The 10th Guideline will be a companion for all countries in Africa starting their national reflection and roadmaps towards NQFs with a systemic vision.
ACQF Guidelines - concept ACQF Guidelines - concept

The concept introduces the objectives, themes and main orientations of the 10 ACQF Guidelines, which will support the ACQF Policy and Technical document.

ACQF Guideline 1: Learning outcomes in the context of qualifications frameworks and systems

The ACQF is a meta-framework based on learning outcomes and, by its very nature, encourages a learning outcomes orientation in its community of countries. Learning outcomes indicate what a learner should know, understand and do after a process of learning. This guideline on learning outcomes is launched at a time where African policy-makers and stakeholders broadly agree on the usefulness of learning outcomes approaches in recognition of learning on the continent. Learning outcomes approaches contribute to learner-centred education and training and to the lifelong learning objective of the ACQF.

ACQF Guideline 2: Levels and level descriptors in the context of ACQF

Each ACQF level represents learning outcomes related to formal, non-formal and informal learning at that level. The ACQF level descriptors capture how the three domains of knowledge, skills and autonomy and responsibility (A&R) increase in breadth, depth and complexity when moving from lower to higher levels. Level descriptors of the ACQF serve complementary purposes: i) basis for referencing of levels of national qualifications frameworks or systems to the ACQF; ii) orientation towards common minimum benchmarks for outcomes of learning on the continent; iii) orientation for countries / regions in developing their qualifications frameworks or systems.

ACQF Guideline 3: Referencing to ACQF

This guideline defines the objectives, criteria, procedures and main implementation arrangements of referencing of national qualifications frameworks or systems to the African Continental Qualifications Framework (ACQF). This guideline is part of the compendium of ten ACQF Guidelines, developed as the technical foundation supporting the ACQF policy document.

ACQF Guideline 4: Validation and recognition of learning

This guideline is one of the ten ACQF guidelines. It focuses on the validation and recognition of learning through credit accumulation and transfer system (CATS), recognition of prior learning (RPL)/ validation of acquired experience (VAE) and the recognition of qualifications.

ACQF Guideline 5: Quality Assurance in the context of qualifications and ACQF

Transparency and trust in qualifications is key in a context of widespread international learner and labour mobility, and rapid transformation of types of qualifications and credentials for different needs and contexts of lifelong learning. Quality assurance – as part of a range of measures by governments and institutions – increases transparency and should underpin trust in the relevance and quality of learning outcomes (that is, learners’ knowledge, skills, autonomy, and responsibility, as certified by qualifications). Such trust in learning outcomes is, in turn, based on trust in the quality of the institutions and providers of education and training at all levels and in all subsectors.

ACQF Guideline 7: Monitoring and evaluation in the context of national qualifications frameworks and ACQF

This M&E Guideline is fundamental for development, implementation and review of NQFs and RQFs including the ACQF. The M&E Guideline is intended as a pragmatic conceptual reference and methodological guidance for NQF and Regional Qualifications Frameworks (RQF) implementers helping them develop and establish functional M&E systems. The Guideline is accessible in English, French and Portuguese.

ACQF Guideline 8: Communication and outreach in the context of qualifications frameworks and ACQF

This guideline on communication and outreach in the context of NQFs / ACQF emphasises the need for qualifications frameworks and systems (national, regional) to engage with stakeholders and end-users to fulfill their promise towards individuals, economic actors and society. The main target users of the communication guideline are: a) Members or stakeholders of steering groups/ implementation groups for the ACQF; b) National Referencing Committees/ National Coordination Points and policy advisers involved in education and training; c) NQF/ NQS authorities, implementers and practitioners of NQFs and NQSs; d) Education and training institutions and individuals interested in the ACQF and its benefits- learners, teachers, trainers, career counsellors, persons involved in supporting mobility for lifelong learning.

ACQF Guideline 9: Innovation and technology in the context of national qualifications frameworks and ACQF

The key message of this document is that innovations and technology have a range of applications related to national and regional qualifications frameworks, credentials, and the recognition of learning, which can be leveraged to enhance government service delivery to constituents. Key principles of ethical collection, processing, use and sharing of data and information must be considered at all stages of innovation. This Guideline is available in English, French and Portuguese.