The European Qualifications Framework in brief

The European Qualifications Framework (EQF) for lifelong learning was formally adopted by the European Commission in 2008 as an overarching qualifications framework which links different countries’ qualifications frameworks together. Acting as a translation device to make qualifications easier to understand across different countries and systems in Europe, its main aim is to help people moving from one country to another for work, or to continue their education or training.

The EQF is made up of 8 levels. Each country’s national qualifications framework (NQF) levels are linked to EQF levels and this allows the EQF to “translate” how qualifications within the different education systems in the member states relate to each other. It applies to all types of qualifications from those achieved at school, to academic, professional or vocational qualifications awarded at the highest levels. This means that employers and education/training providers have additional information to assist them to understand qualifications from other countries.