Aims of Session
• To establish our own
understanding and definition of
• To clarify our understanding of
• To establish links to the Australian
• To identify the role of the library in
• To begin the process of creating a
statement from AISWA Libraries
Inc. regarding Transversal
What are the drivers for Transversal Competencies
and where have they come from?
Key Competencies for Lifelong learning -
a European Reference FrameworkKey competences are those which all individuals need for personal
fulfilment and development, active citizenship, social inclusion and
The Reference Framework sets out eight key competences:
• Communication in the mother tongue;
• Communication in foreign languages;
• Mathematical competence and basic competences in science and
• Digital competence;
• Learning to learn;
• Social and civic competences;
• Sense of initiative and entrepreneurship; and
• Cultural awareness and expression.
DECISION (EU) 2018/646 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE
COUNCIL of 18 April 2018
on a common framework for the provision of better services for skills and qualifications
(Europass) and repealing Decision No 2241/2004/EC
For the purposes of this Decision, skills are understood in a broad sense covering
what a person knows, understands and can do. Skills refer to different types of
learning outcomes, including knowledge and competences as well as ability to apply
knowledge and to use knowhow in order to complete tasks and solve problems. In
addition to the acknowledged importance of professional skills, there is an
acknowledgement that transversal or soft skills, such as critical thinking, team
work, problem solving and creativity, digital or language skills, are increasingly
important and are essential prerequisites for personal and professional fulfilment
and can be applied in different fields. Individuals could benefit from tools and
guidance on assessing and describing those and other skills.
Decision No 2241/2004/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council
established a framework to address the challenges relating to job seeking, engaging
in learning and career management. The aim of that Decision was to achieve better
transparency of qualifications and competences through a portfolio of
documents known as ‘Europass’, which individuals can use on a voluntary basis.
That Decision also established national bodies, known as National Europass
Centres, in order to implement the Europass framework.
21st century skills
CompetenciesCompetences are defined as a combination of knowledge, skills and
attitudes appropriate to the context.
Competency denotes something the learner must master. It therefore
does not reflect what the teacher must do.
A competency does not refer to an activity carried out by the learner
in the course of learning: A competency denotes a quality acquired by
the learner, a potential for reflection and action that he or she keeps
A competency is more than just knowledge and
skills. It involves the ability to meet complex
demands, by drawing on and mobilising
psychological resources (including skills and
attitudes) in a particular context. For example, the
ability to communicate effectively is a competency
that may draw in an individual’s knowledge of
language, practical IT skills and attitudes towards
those with whom he is communicating.
“The Definition and Selection of key Competencies” Executive Summary 2005
Competency development is an evolving process
competenciescompetency = potential to act + educational/technical content: this
involves cognitive, gestural and technical know-how (in technical or
professional training), such as recognising a triangle, comparing two modes of
germination, fitting a door frame, etc.
competency = potential to act + context: what are involved here are generic
competencies- the competency of being open, assertive and creative, of
seeking information, of paying attention to detail, of having scientific rigour, etc.
competency = potential to act + educational/technical content + situation:
these are situational competencies, which are only meaningful if
characterised by a family of situations to be handled, this family of situations
being delimited by a set of contents supposedly acquired by the learner and
that he or she must reinvest in situations.
Ways of thinking
Creativity and innovation
Critical thinking, problem
Learning to learn,
Ways of working
Tools for working
Living in the world
Citizenship local and global
Life and career
Personal and social
Everyone requires Transversal
Competencies to successfully adapt to
change and to lead meaningful and
They are talents and abilities that can be
transferred from one life situation to
another and from one occupation to
TCs are not specific to one particular
career path but are generic across all
They also support independent functioning
and coping with practical problems or
choices as a worker or citizen, learning
from personal experiences in diverse
formal and informal settings.
UNESCO identifies 5 domains for TCs:
1.Critical and innovative thinking
5.Media and information literacy
Zest For Living
• locate and access information through ICT,
media, libraries and archives
• express and communicate ideas through ICT
• Use media and ICT to participate in democratic
• analyse and evaluate media content
ACARA Curriculum Activity Report
Assessment of transversal competencies
ACARA represents Australia in the Network on Education
Quality Monitoring the Asia Pacific project. The UNESCO
comparative study explores approaches and practices
adopted in assessing transversal competencies or
general capabilities in the Asia-Pacific region. The
Australian report has been developed and submitted. It
involves national level information and school case
studies. Each participating country’s report will be
synthesised to form the regional report.
Assessment of Transversal Skills 2020 (ATS2020) is an innovative
policy experimentation project co-funded by the European Commission.
The ATS2020 project is comprised of 17 partners from 11 EU countries.
ATS2020 provides a comprehensive learning model for the
enhancement of student indispensable transversal skills within curricula
and offers new approaches and innovative tools to teachers for the
development and assessment of these skills.
Challenges for Integrating Transversal
Competencies into the Curriculum
Competencies in the
• The ‘United Nations’ Approach - focus on “life skills’ and “living
together in society”
• The “Interdisciplinarity” / cross- cutting capacities approach - the
development of generic competencies (e.g. learning to learn)
• The Standards Approach - focuses on the introduction and
assessment of minimum ‘know-how’ and competencies at each level
- with employability as an end-point (e.g Australian Qualifications
• Interaction of Achievements and Terminal Competencies Approach -
also known as ‘basic competencies approach” or “integration
pedagogy” - provides cognitive, gestural and emotional capability,
enabling him or her to act in complex situations as a responsible
Questions for Decision
Makers1. Link with the learner’s exit profile
What type of learner exit profile is sought? A general profile (knowledge,
know-how, culture, etc.)? A set of standards with an eye to employability? A
potential for handling complex situations of everyday and professional life?
2. The assessable character of competencies
Do we want to be able to assess these competencies, or do they just serve
as a guide lending colour to the learning processes? Are competencies a
goal to be reached by each learner or do they represent a framework
describing the spirit in which the learning processes should take place?
3. Link between competencies and programme content
Do we consider that competencies must encompass educational content, or
rather that they should develop alongside this content?
4. Importance of the socio-emotional/emotional dimension
How far is the system actually ready to introduce the socio-emotional
dimension in the curriculum, or even in the emotional dimension?
Assessment of know-how
Since the introduction of teaching by objectives in education, the types of
know-how are assessed at school in accordance with systematic
procedures, whether through questionnaires, exercises or practice.
Assessing generic competencies
The assessment of generic competencies in teaching is today the
subject of very few instrumented devices. They are still often assessed
through a subjective appreciation given by the teacher.
Assessing situational competencies
Apart from technical and professional training, where these assessments
are common practice, there is not, in the world of primary or secondary
general education, any deep-rooted tradition of assessing situational
competencies. In recent years, however, particularly in a number of
French- speaking countries, they are beginning to be assessed by
means of complex situations presented to the learner — situations of
producing a complex written submission, solving a problem, etc.
Furthermore, such complex situations are increasingly making their
appearance on international standardised tests.
ActionsDevelop a position paper from AISWA Libraries Inc.
• Our own definition of Transversal Competencies
• What we believe are the most important
competencies (with a focus on Information
• A statement about how the library program can
support the development of Transversal
• Proposed strategies of how this could be done
• Curated list of support resources