Vocational Education and Training (VET): The German System (Study Visits Included)

Table of Contents

Description

The highly skilled labor force is a fundamental strength of German industry, and a major reason for foreign companies to establish businesses there. The basis for this skilled labor force is provided by an extensive apprenticeship and training system that is second to none in the world.

Have you ever heard about dual education, or Duale Ausbildung, in German?

Known as ‘dual studies’ or referred to as the ‘dual education/apprenticeship system’, the German VET system is a highly regulated and well-regarded system, in which young people learn through a mix of ‘on-the-job’ training, as well as in the classroom.

Usually, learners spend 70% of their time in the workplace and 30% at college, therefore balancing theory with practical work. Dual educational training typically lasts around two to three years, after which time students will have often gained an industry-recognized qualification that is awarded by a Chamber of Commerce or guild.

By visiting some of the best VET institutions in the Berlin area and the businesses they work with, participants will get a significant insight into the German dual system of vocational education. In addition, thanks to the sharing of best practices, they will compare this system with other participants’ VET systems as well, allowing them to plan successful learning experiences integrating both innovative ideas and vocational elements.

The on-the-job experience of the German dual system provides a sense of accomplishment and additional motivation for the apprentice, who learns by doing effective work.

The system is standardized throughout Germany so that a young person completing a placement in one state can ensure that its qualification will be recognized in another. There are currently 330 occupations in Germany that require formal training, and with its standardized training and qualifications, this system allows many students to get the correct training before they embark on their chosen careers.

Concept by: Francesco Molinari

Please note: As schools usually close in May and open up again in September, we may not able to offer site visits to VET schools during the summer.

Learning outcomes

The course will help the participants to:

  • Understand how the German dual (VET) system works;
  • Get a clearer perception concerning the practical activities through school and business visits;
  • Implement the vocational and training system abroad and how to adapt it to the different educational environments;
  • Make the most of EU-funded opportunities for VET teachers/learners;
  • Enhance the collaboration between companies and educational institutions in order to foster educational skills.

Tentative schedule

Day 1- Course introduction and intro to the German Dual system

Course introduction

  • Introduction to the course, the school, and the external week activities;
  • Icebreaker activities;
  • Getting to know each other, presentation of participants’ schools.

Intro to The German Dual System of Vocational Training

  • Description of the fundamentals of the education system in Germany;
  • Understanding the vocational education and training in Germany.

Day 2 – School visits*

  • VET School/institution visits;
  • Meeting with an Anzubi.

Day 3 – Comparison of participants’ VET systems

  • Analyzing different needs of initial and continuing VET;
  • Understanding how the industrial districts work with schools and regional institutions in Germany;
  • Sharing of best practices: similar programs in other countries;
  • Discuss pros and cons.

Day 4 – Enterprise visits

  • Visit of the enterprise hosting VET learners.

Day 5 – European Union’s opportunities for VET schools

  • Which are the opportunity offered by the European Union for VET school/institutions?
  • Is there any common area in participants’ interests?
  • Workshop drafting cooperation projects.

Day 6 – Course closure and cultural activities

  • Course evaluation round-up of acquired competencies, feedback, and discussion;
  • Awarding of the course Certificate of Attendance;
  • Excursion and other external cultural activities.

*Please note: As schools usually close in May and open up again in September, we may not able to offer site visits to schools during summer.

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