Standards for Competence Portfolios

The EPC Standards for Portfolio Work are to be used accordingly for European Competence Portfolios. In addition, the following standards apply:

  1. Competence assessment is voluntary and individual.
  2. The student’s activities on which the assessment is to be based are taken from any portfolio documentation the student chooses. The choice should be representative of the student’s achievements and he or she is to give reasons for the choice.
  3. The students are free to explore and use individual sets of competences and competence criteria. The students should state their understanding of the set of competences they chose and possibly explain the reasons for their choice. It may be useful to refer to the “European Key Competences for Life Long Learning” (cf. footnote [6]) or other competence evaluation grids:
  4. The student’s competence assessments follow five basic steps:
    • Step 1: Selection: The students choose those actions, tasks or activities from their portfolio that they consider relevant and fruitful for a competence assessment.
    • Step 2: Description: The students describe carefully and in detail all that is necessary to create a vivid picture of the particular activity contained in the portfolio.
    • Step 3: Assessment: The students analyse the described activity by listing all essential steps and activities that needed to be carried out in order to perform the particular activity. These activities are analysed with respect to clues, indications and proof of formerly acquired knowledge, skills and attitudes.
    • Step 4: Conclusion: The students conclude which competences were derived from the particular activity chosen and described in step 3.
    • Step 5: Evaluation: The students judge to what degree the competences were developed, employing individually defined or standardised competence evaluation grids, and explain the conclusions drawn and the judgements made.
  5. The tutor’s evaluation (or that of a third person) must be based on the student’s assessment only, applying only previously agreed criteria, which are to be stated explicitly in the portfolio.
  6. The European Competence Portfolio is written and edited by the student, who also decides whether another evaluator’s feedback is included.

Standards for portfolio based Competence Certificates

The competence certificates must comply with the above standards for competence portfolios and the standards for portfolio certificates. They must be signed by the student and the tutor and signed and stamped by a school representative. The tutor may only sign the certificate if he or she concludes that the student’s assessment gives a reasonable picture of the student’s competences. The signature and stamp of the school representative is conditional upon conformity with the EPC standards.

“The portfolio-jungle is an exciting place for learner and teacher survival training – and a perfect place to play hide and seek as well.”

(T. Koch)