BWP 2/2018

Partners and strategies of cooperation

BWP 2/2018

The vocational education and training landscape is undergoing change in the wake of demographic and technological developments. Discernible signs of this shift include fewer trainees whose prior learning is, however, increasingly heterogeneous in nature, more demanding training contents, and matching problems on the training market that are beginning to perpetuate themselves. What are the impacts of all this on collaboration between the cooperation partners involved in vocational education and training? Where are new ways of working together coming into being, and how are existing cooperation arrangements being developed further in order to ensure high-quality training? The articles included in the present issue highlight the reasons behind various types of cooperation and reveal areas of potential for learners and learning venues.


Vocational education and training in figures

Christian Gerhards

Almost all companies believe that more support is required for the training of refugees

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Company-based training makes an essential contribution to the integration of young refugees. Numerous measures are in place to provide support prior to and during training. However, how suitable are these measures from the point of view of the companies? The 2017 BIBB Training Panel surveyed companies providing training on this issue. Respondents included both companies who are already training refugees and those who have not yet been able to gain any experience in this area.

Special Focus

Nicolette Seiterle

Strengthening the integration of foreign young people into vocational education and training

Making use of the areas of potential offered by consortia of companies providing training

Foreign youngsters or young people who are perceived as being foreign are confronted with various disadvantages when undergoing traditional vocational education and training delivered by a single company. They find it more difficult to access a training place and are more likely to dissolve their training contract prematurely. Because of the specific organisational features they are able to display, consortia of companies providing training are able to facilitate integration into vocational education and training for this group of young persons in particular. This article presents the results of a study which investigates the areas of potential offered by consortia of companies providing training in Switzerland.
Uwe Faßhauer

Challenges for regionally coordinated vocational school development

  Federal state laws require local government school providers to submit school development planning programmes. Because vocational education and training in Germany typically features a large number of stakeholders and interweaving systems controlled by central and federal state regulations and trends, development planning for vocational schools operates at the edge of governability. The present article begins by describing the general problem situations inherent in such development planning and outlines possible options for regional coordination in the vocational schools sector. It showcases a case study in Hessen which is endeavouring to achieve regional cooperation and uses the problem of specialist classes within the dual system as a basis for stating some of the challenges facing targeted regional vocational school development.  
Christiane Kaune, Klaus Wollenweber

Improving training opportunities via cooperation between general and vocational schools in Hameln

  Since the 2009/10 school year, general and vocational schools in the local government district of Hameln-Pyrmont have had a cooperation model in place which imparts broad basic vocational training to pupils in Years 9 and 10 alongside their general school leaving qualification. The aims are to support young people in career choice decisions and to improve training opportunities. Although the programme initially started out as a school pilot, it became part of regular educational provision after only three years and has continued to develop since that time. The article describes the motivations behind such a development and the design concept of the model. Progression and transition figures provide evidence of the effectiveness of this particular model. Close cooperation between school senior management teams and regular specialist networking between teaching staff have also been instrumental in its success.  
Andreas Blöß

Further development of cooperation arrangements in the light of digitalisation

Academy of Audiology at the centre of a national network

The audiology sector provides a prime example of successful cooperation in initial and continuing vocational education and training in the craft trades. Linking vocational education and training and academic education is facilitating further conceptual developments and the expansion of specialist competencies. The present article uses practical examples to show how existing cooperation arrangements are being more rigorously pursued at a local level in the wake of digitalisation and looks at the potential prospects for international networking.
Manfred Hoppe, Kersten Siepmann

Wilo-Brain – a federal network for training in craft trade occupations in sanitary, heating and air conditioning systems

The increasing complexity of heating systems is requiring skilled workers in craft trade occupations relating to sanitary, heating and air conditioning engineering to participate in ongoing training. The continuing training provision offered by a manufacturer of heating pumps has developed into a network that has become an integral part of initial and continuing training in this craft trades sector in VET institutions. The present article describes the establishment, development and particular characteristics of this network.
Maren Gag

Reinforcing cooperation and networking

Experiences from the context of occupational integration of refugees

Against the background of many years of networking in the field of integration of refugees in Hamburg, this article illustrates specific approaches towards and examples of cooperation practice, and reflects upon the chances and limitations of these. The diversity of the stakeholders involved and the various levels at which they operate are both highly significant. The article provides a summary of conclusions and presents issues which are of relevance to the further development of cooperation concepts and programmatic control mechanisms in order to improve the effectiveness of networking structures within the field of vocational education and training and on the labour market.
Anne Görgen-Engels, Yvonne Salewski

Cooperation means building bridges

Tasks taken on by the offices of the Coordinating Agency for Training and Migration (KAUSA) in the development of a regional action plan

The KAUSA service agencies are drawing up regional action plans in order to help establish support structures for the topic of “training and migration”. The approach they adopt is dependent upon the respective regional facts and circumstances. The present article uses the KAUSA Agency for the Hanover region as an example in order to illustrate how company-oriented strategic networking can be initiated to drive forward joint planning processes.
Robert F. Schmidt, Dirk Jacob, Ulrich Thalhofer

Systems Engineering – a dual course of higher education study undertaken on a part-time basis with digital support

The drawback of many dual study models is that students spend only comparatively short consecutive periods of between four weeks and three months at the company. The content link between theoretical study and practice or training at the company is also not always facilitated in the best possible way. A Bachelor degree course in Systems Engineering has been designed in order to compensate for these disadvantages. The programme is organised along the lines of a part-time model and features digital teaching methods and company-related projects. This article presents the study model and shows how due consideration is accorded to the interests of the cooperation partners involved during the development and implementation process.
Rebecca Haag, Harald Schoelen

A triple approach

A three-way study programme for the acquisition of young trainees in the craft trades sector

The continuing trend towards academisation and a shortage of highly-qualified skilled workers and managerial staff are creating major challenges for the craft trades sector. In order to cover requirements, the craft trades need to put attractive provision in place that will enable them to secure the services of more young trainees who have obtained a specialist upper secondary school leaving certificate. This article presents a three-way study programme which serves as an example to show how cooperation between the craft trades sector and institutes of higher education can succeed in such an aim.
Marthe Geiben, Eszter Csépe-Bannert

Introduction of dual training in Slovakia

Initial steps towards closer cooperation between schools and companies

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In 2015, Slovakia passed a new vocational education and training act which also encompasses the introduction of dual training. Its provisions also include stipulations governing new opportunities for cooperation between the state and trade and industry at a national level and between schools and business both regionally and locally. This article presents these regulations and describes initial experiences with implementation by taking the development of training programmes for shoe makers as an example.

Other Themes

Regina Dionisius, Amelie Illiger

Foreign young people continue to suffer disadvantage in the training system

More and more foreign entrants are progressing into the training system. What education and training opportunities do they take advantage of, and how do these differ from those embraced by German youngsters? The present article investigates this issue by evaluating data from the “Integrated Training Reporting System” (iABE).
Agnes Bauer, Christian Sichau, Katrin Hille

Vocational orientation at Science Centres

Potential offered by the RIASEC Model for the employment-oriented identification of occupationally-related skills

Science Centres provide an opportunity to explore the world and its phenomena via interactive exhibits. They also offer a fun and interactive way for visitors to learn something about their own abilities. At the “experimenta” Science Centre in Heilbronn, the search for talent is currently being further developed on the basis of the RIASEC model. This is a system which is deployed in the field of vocational guidance, and the aim is to make greater use of it to explore occupationally-related skills. This article outlines the basic principles of the model and illustrates how it is being implemented within the context of the exhibition. It concludes by reflecting upon the areas of potential afforded by this provision within the scope of vocational orientation processes.


Barbara Lorig

Changes to examination regulations as a result of the interaction between company impetuses and (sub)statutory stipulations

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The examination system occupies a key position in vocational education and training reforms because it exerts direct effects on learning processes and structures. At the same time, large numbers of stakeholders in pursuit of different vested interests are involved in the further development of the system. Against the background of the interaction between impetuses from practice and from the regulatory policy or legislative framework, this article illustrates the changes that have taken place over recent decades with regard to examination structure, examination instruments and guiding principles. A forecast is presented which reflects upon these developments and their impacts on examination practice.
Hans Kaiser, Maren Keup-Gottschalck, Gerd Labusch

System error – consequences of automated examination evaluation

Digitalised examination evaluation promises to deliver efficiency and objectivity. What happens, however, if automated examinations are accompanied by system errors? Who is responsible for these? The article goes on to demonstrate the effects of automation on examination results. These are then subjected to critical scrutiny against the background of the guiding principle of employability skills in the dual system.