The Law of Unintended Consequences, Serendipity or just farsightedness? Call it what you like; but it seems the TRECVET project has arrived  at a most fortunate time. In the current financial and technological situation employers and employees alike are having to make major re-assessments. It would appear that the single skilled will be at a great disadvantage in the post crisis workplace.

In todays world the old adage  'Jack of all trades, master of none' takes on a much more positive connotation.

The following extract comes from "Future Work Skills: 2020." by  the Apollo Research Institute and Institute for the Future. It would seem that current events have greatly trimmed back this time-line making the solution to the problems of skill readjustment much more urgent.

Extract begins.

Future skills

In addition to describing the trends that will shape your workplace, researchers linked the trends to particular skills that could prepare you for 2020. These 10 proficiencies and abilities include:

  1. Sense-making – ability to determine the deeper meaning or significance of what is being expressed.
  2. Social intelligence – connecting to others in a deep and direct way, to sense and stimulate reactions and desired interactions.
  3. Novel and adaptive thinking – proficiency at thinking and coming up with solutions and responses beyond that which is rote or rule based.
  4. Cross-cultural competency – operating in different cultural settings.
  5. Computational thinking – ability to translate vast amounts of data into abstract concepts, and to understand data-based reasoning.
  6. New media literacy – ability to critically assess and develop content that uses new media forms, and to leverage these media for persuasive communication.
  7. Transdisciplinarity – literacy in and ability to understand concepts across multiple disciplines.
  8. Design mindset – ability to represent and develop tasks and work processes for desired outcomes.
  9. Cognitive load management – ability to discriminate and filter information for importance, and to understand how to maximize cognitive functioning using a variety of tools and techniques.
  10. Virtual collaboration – ability to work productively, drive engagement and demonstrate presence as a member of a virtual team.

Extract ends

Source Reference

Where TRECVET comes in.

The future work place will be inhabited by the multi-skilled protagonist. It may even be the case that demonstrable skills will become as important as formal qualifications. Whatever the case, employers and employees will need a means to identify, record, communicate and demonstrate  skill sets as requirements or as assets.

And this is why TRECVET will be of such importance.

The TRECVET Philosophy.

The TRECVET project compares qualifications, skills and knowledge in Vocational Education and Training (VET). It is based upon the premise that knowledge and skill can be broken down into Fundamental Elements (FEs).

For the purposes of the TRECVET project an FE is defined as follows:

  1. An FE is the smallest subdivision of examinable knowledge or skill that in itself constitutes a complete logical and coherent learning block.
  2. FEs can contain knowledge only (Theory) or be a combination of knowledge and skill (Practical).
  3. An FE is autonomous and does not contain or depend  on other FEs for its existence.
  4. An FE is a post school component and is assumed to be above the level of a sixteen year old school leaver.

Although TRECVET is being developed using the case study of three similar tri-national marine qualifications, it was always intended in the long term to be scalable into a crossover skill comparator to incorporate all VET sectors.

How it works.

"The whole is greater than the sum of its parts."  Aristotle

Consider FEs as if they were chemical elements, by themselves they may seem insignificant; but when combined in the correct combinations the result can be extraordinary!

In its final phase TRECVET will provide a credible solution for revealing formal, informal and non formal skills that are hidden within our most valuable resource.


This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.
This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.
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