Enriching lives, opening minds

Erasmus+ is the EU Programme in the fields of education, training, youth and sport for the period 2021-2027. Education, training, youth and sport are key areas that support citizens in their personal and professional development. 

Enriching lives, opening minds

High quality, inclusive education and training, as well as informal and non-formal learning, ultimately equip young people and participants of all ages with the qualifications and skills needed for their meaningful participation in democratic society, intercultural understanding and successful transition in the labour market. Building on the success of the programme in the period 2014-2020, Erasmus+ strengthens its efforts to increase the opportunities offered to more participants and to a wider range of organisations, focusing on its qualitative impact and contributing to more inclusive and cohesive, greener and digitally fit societies.

Key Action 1

The Actions supported under this Key Action are expected to bring positive and long-lasting effects on the participants and participating organisations involved, as well as on the policy systems in which such activities are framed.

Key Action 2

The Actions supported under this Key Action are expected to contribute significantly to the priorities of the programme, to bring positive and long-lasting effects on the participating organisations, on the policy systems in which such Actions are framed as well as on the organisations and persons directly or indirectly involved in the organised activities.

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Priorities of the Erasmus+ Programme

The Programme seeks to promote equal opportunities and access, inclusion, diversity and fairness across all its actions. Organisations and the participants with fewer opportunities themselves are at the heart of these objectives and with these in mind, the programme puts mechanisms and resources at their disposal. When designing their projects and activities, organisations should have an inclusive approach, making them accessible to a diverse range of participants. To achieve this, National Agencies are also vital to support projects with a view for these to being as inclusive and diverse as possible. Based on the overall principles and mechanisms at European level, National Agencies will draw up inclusion and diversity plans to best address the needs of participants with fewer opportunities and to support the organisations working with these target groups in their national context. At the same time, the SALTO Resource Centres supporting the implementation of the programme are also key players in promoting and rolling out inclusion and diversity measures, in particular as regards to gather knowledge and to conceive and run capacity-building activities for National Agency staff and programme beneficiaries. Likewise, the European Education and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) plays an equally important role for the programme strands that are managed in direct management. In third countries not associated to the Programme, EU Delegations and – where they exist – the National Erasmus+ Offices (NEOs) and Erasmus+ Focal Points are also key in bringing the programme closer to the target groups addressed by this Strategy. In order to implement these principles, a Framework on inclusion measures as well as an Inclusion and Diversity Strategy covering all programme fields have been developed to support an easier access to funding for a wider range of organisations, and to better reach out to more participants with fewer opportunities. It also sets up the space and mechanisms for those projects, supported through the programme, which intend to work on inclusion and diversity related issues. This Strategy aims to help addressing the barriers different target groups may face in accessing such opportunities within Europe and beyond.
The COVID-19 pandemic shed further light on the importance of digital education for the digital transformation that Europe needs. In particular, it emphasised the increased need to harness the potential of digital technologies for teaching and learning and to develop digital skills for all. In line with the strategic priorities of the Digital Education Action Plan (2021-2027), the Programme aims to support this endeavour to engage learners, educators, youth workers, young people and organisations in the path to digital transformation. The programme will support the first strategic priority of the Action Plan, the development of a high-performing digital education ecosystem, by building capacity and critical understanding in all type of education and training institutions on how to exploit the opportunities offered by digital technologies for teaching and learning at all levels and for all sectors and to develop and implement digital transformation plans of educational institutions. The programme will also support the second strategic priority of the Action Plan, by supporting actions aiming at enhancing digital skills and competence development at all levels of society and for everyone (including young people with fewer opportunities, students, job seekers and workers). The focus will be on fostering both basic and advanced digital skills as well as digital literacy, which has become essential for everyday life and for enabling people to navigate a world full of algorithms and participate fully in civil society and democracy. In line with these two strategic priorities of the Action Plan, a European Digital Education Hub will be established to reinforce cooperation on digital education at the EU level and to contribute to exchange of good practices, co-creation and experimentation. The aim of the Hub will be to support Member States through closer cross-sectoral cooperation by addressing digital education in a lifelong learning perspective. The Hub will connect national authorities, the private sector, experts, researchers, education and training providers and civil society through a more agile development of policy and practice in digital education. The Programme should reach out to a larger target group both within and beyond the Union by a greater use of information, communication and technology tools, combined use of physical mobility and virtual learning and virtual cooperation.
Environment and climate action are key priorities for the EU now and in the future. The European Green Deal Communication is the European new growth strategy and recognises the key role of schools, training institutions and universities to engage with pupils, parents, and the wider community on the changes needed for a successful transition to become climate neutral by 2050. In addition, the Council Recommendation on learning for the green transition emphasizes the need to provide learners of all ages with opportunities to find out about the climate crisis and sustainability in both formal education and non-formal education, and to make learning for the green transition a priority in education and training policies and programmes. Sustainability should become part of the entire spectrum of education and training, including curricula, professional development for educators as well as buildings, infrastructure and operations. The Erasmus+ programme will be a key instrument for building knowledge, skills, and attitudes on climate change and support sustainable development both within the European Union and beyond. The programme will increase the number of mobility opportunities in green forward-looking domains which foster the development of competences, enhance career prospects and engage participants in areas which are strategic for sustainable growth, with special attention to rural development (sustainable farming, management of natural resources, soil protection, bio-agriculture). Moreover, Erasmus+, with mobility at its core, should strive for carbon-neutrality by promoting sustainable transport modes and more environmentally responsible behavior. Environment and the fight against global warming will become a horizontal priority for the selection of projects. Priority will be given to projects aimed at developing competences in various green sectors, including those in the framework of the contribution from education and culture to sustainable development goals, developing green sectorial skills strategies and methodologies, future-oriented curricula, as well as initiatives that support the planned approaches of the participating organisations regarding environmental sustainability. The Programme supports the use of innovative practices to make learners, staff and youth workers true actors of change (e.g. save resources, reduce energy use, waste and carbon footprint, opt for sustainable food and mobility choices, etc.). Priority will also be given to projects that – through education, training, youth and sport activities – enable behavioural changes for individual preferences, cultural values, awareness, and more generally support active engagement for sustainable development. Therefore, organisations and participants involved should strive to incorporate green practices in all projects when designing the activity, which will encourage them to discuss and learn about environmental issues, to reflect about local actions and to come up with alternative greener ways of implementing their activities. Platforms such as European School Education Platform (including eTwinning) and EPALE will continue to produce support materials and facilitate the exchange of effective educational practices and policies for environmental sustainability. Erasmus+ is also a powerful instrument to reach out to and engage with a wide spectrum of players in our society (schools, universities, VET providers, youth and sport organisations, NGOs, local and regional authorities, civil society organisations, etc.) who can become active agents in the transition towards climate neutrality by 2050.
The Erasmus+ Programme addresses the citizens’ limited participation in its democratic processes and their lack of knowledge about the European Union, and tries to help them overcome the difficulties in actively engaging and participating in their communities or in the Union’s political and social life. Strengthening citizens’ understanding of the European Union from an early age is crucial for the Union’s future. In addition to formal education, non-formal learning can enhance the citizens’ understanding of the European Union and foster a sense of belonging to it. The Programme supports active citizenship and ethics in lifelong learning; it fosters the development of social and intercultural competences, critical thinking and media literacy. Priority is given to projects that offer opportunities for people’s participation in democratic life, social and civic engagement through formal or non-formal learning activities. The focus is put on raising awareness of and understanding the European Union context, notably as regards the common EU values, the principles of unity and diversity, as well as their social, cultural and historical heritage. In the field of youth, a Youth Participation Strategy  has been designed to provide a common framework and support the use of the Programme to foster youth participation in democratic life. The Strategy aims to improve the quality of youth participation in the Programme and complements key EU Youth Policy documents, such as the EU Youth Strategy and the EU Youth Goals. The Youth Participation Toolkit accompanies the Strategy and aims to, in practical terms, enhance the participation of young people in each of the actions of the Programme, by sharing know-how, recommendations, tools and practical guidance. The toolkit includes in its modules a special focus on how to cover the new horizontal priorities in the projects.

Erasmus+ Priorities in the field of higher education

The programme will aim to strengthen the strategic and structured cooperation between higher education institutions through: a) support for developing and testing various types of cooperation models, including virtual and blended cooperation and the use of different digital tools and online platforms; b) improving mobility by implementing automatic mutual recognition of qualifications and learning outcomes, and by embedding mobility in curricula; c) support for higher education institutions to implement the Bologna principles, including promoting fundamental academic values and the standards and guidelines for quality assurance, and tools to enhance mobility for all; d) support for higher education institutions, in strong cooperation with the representatives of Member States to pilot innovative cooperation and actions; e) support for implementing Erasmus Without Paper, deploying the European Student Identifier and the European Student Card.

To tackle societal challenges and promote innovation and entrepreneurship through support for: a) the development of learning outcomes oriented and student- centred curricula that better meet the learning needs of students and reduce skills mismatches, and promote entrepreneurship, while also being relevant for the labour market and for the wider society, for example by inviting staff from enterprises and the world of work or by codesigning curricula with the industry, including SMEs; b) the development, testing and implementation of flexible learning pathways and modular course design (part-time, online or blended) and appropriate forms of assessment, including the development of online assessment; c) promoting the lifelong learning dimension of higher education, including by exploring the possibilities for take-up, validation and recognition of short learning courses leading to micro-credentials; d) implementation of trans-disciplinary approaches and innovative pedagogies such as inverted learning, collaborative online international learning, research-based learning and blended intensive programmes, which support the acquisition of transferable forward-looking skills and entrepreneurship through a challenge-based approach.

This priority supports the development and implementation of fit-for-purpose STEM higher education curricula, following a STEAM approach; promoting participation of women in STEM fields of study and especially in engineering, ICT and advanced digital skills; development of guidance and mentoring programmes for students, especially girls and women, to pursue STEM and ICT fields of study and occupations; fostering gender sensitive education and training practices in STEM education; eliminating gender stereotypes in STEM.

Through a) developing and implementing strategies and quality culture to reward and incentivise excellence in teaching, including online teaching, enhanced quality of study experience and teaching for learners with fewer opportunities, student-centred learning and teaching in higher education, as well as through support for flexible and attractive academic careers, valuing teaching, research, entrepreneurship, management and leadership activities; b) training of academics in new and innovative pedagogies, including teaching in online or blended environments, trans- disciplinary approaches, new curriculum design, delivery and assessment methods linking education with research and innovation where relevant, c) developing new practices in instructional design, based on educational research and creativity.

Through support for a) digital transformation of higher education institutions(including interoperability) and the digitalisation of student mobility linked to the European Student Card initiative, b) the development of digital skills of students and staff, and c) graduate tracking databases. With regard to the green transition, the programme will support a) whole-institutional approaches, b) transdisciplinary approaches coupled with a strong disciplinary background and life-long learning, including through micro-credentials, c) curricula development in line with the required green skills, d) supporting transnational partnerships between students, academics, universities, employers, communities and other stakeholders on climate challenges to create true higher education climate frontrunners.

The programme will foster inclusive approaches for mobility and cooperation activities such as a) support to the education of refugee students and staff, and support to the institutions and staff of host countries in dealing with this endeavour, b) increased access, participation and completion rates of people with fewer opportunities, including underrepresented groups, also through developing voluntary quantitative targets; c) active support to incoming mobile participants throughout the process of finding accommodation, including through collaboration with the relevant stakeholders for the provision of appropriate and affordable housing; d) support to mental health of students and academics; e) foster gender balance in higher education institutions, across fields of study and in leadership positions; f) fostering civic engagement through the promotion of informal learning and extra-curricular activities and recognition of voluntary and community work in students’ academic results.

The programme will provide support for innovation and entrepreneurship in higher education, including for example through a) support for the set-up and functioning of living labs and incubators within higher education institutions, in close cooperation with the entrepreneurial sector and other relevant actors, to support innovative learning and teaching and help student entrepreneurs to develop their ideas into businesses, b) support for learning and teaching partnerships with commercial and non-commercial organisations in the private sector that foster students’ exposure to innovation and entrepreneurship.

This action will aim at supporting Ukraine in reshaping and re-building its higher education system, through cooperation with higher education institutions in Europe, on, among others, quality and relevance of teaching and learning accessible to a wide range of learners; innovative pedagogical approaches; student-centred, challenge-based and interdisciplinary approaches; digital and green skills; lifelong learning practices; system of qualifications; effective management practices; protection of academic values; cooperation with the innovation ecosystem; development and implementation of joint educational activities and programmes.

Erasmus+ Priorities in the field of vocational education and training

This includes supporting the development of VET programmes that offer a balanced mix of vocational skills and create work-based learning opportunities well aligned to all economic cycles, evolving jobs and working methods and key competences. This priority also fosters the development of VET curricula, programme offers and qualifications which are regularly updated, building on skills intelligence. Projects will support VET providers in the adaptation of their training offer to changing skills needs, green and digital transitions and economic cycles.

This priority supports initiatives that develop flexible and learner-centred VET programmes, and that contribute to closing existing gaps in the access to training for working age adults to successfully manage labour market transitions. Projects under this priority also contribute to the development of continuing vocational training programmes designed to be adaptable to labour market, as well as programmes that facilitate the transfer, recognition and accumulation of learning outcomes leading to national qualifications.

This priority supports projects which core aim is to substantially change the way in which VET is practiced, making it more relevant to the current and future needs of the economy and society. These changes can be organizational (planning, financing, human resource management, monitoring and communication). They can also address teaching and learning processes through the development and implementation of new and more relevant teaching and learning approaches. These changes can relate to the VET providers ecosystem and the way they engage with partners, for example through technology diffusion and applied research, advocacy, networking and internationalization activities. They can also target the development and provision of VET products and services (e.g. skills development, applied research, and consultancy) to external actors such as students, companies and governments.

Priority will be given to projects that contribute to increasing the attractiveness of VET at different levels. Examples of these can be projects that work towards greater permeability between diverse educational levels, that foster open and participative learning environments, support the professional development of VET teachers and trainers, or facilitate recognition of learning outcomes and the use of Europass and other digital services. This priority also support projects that develop long-term partnerships for establishing or reinforcing international, national, regional and sectoral skills competitions. The impact of these activities can be optimised by working closely together with businesses, VET providers, chambers of commerce and other relevant stakeholders along the different phases of the project cycle.

This priority focuses on measuring and improving quality of VET by developing national quality assurance systems, for both initial and continuing VET, in all learning environments and all learning formats, delivered by both public and private providers. In particular, this includes setting-up and testing graduate tracking arrangements in line with the Council Recommendation on tracking graduates, and the Recommendation on the European Quality Assurance Reference Framework for Vocational Education and Training (EQAVET)149, as well as exploring EU vocational core profiles, and micro-credentials.

This priority aims at putting in place support mechanisms and contractual frameworks to promote quality mobility of VET staff and learners. Particularly important aspects include automatic mutual recognition of qualifications and learning outcomes, as well as developing student support services for learner mobility. Such services can include informing, motivating, preparing and facilitating the social integration of the VET learners in the host country, as well as enhancing their intercultural awareness and active citizenship.

This priority supports projects aiming to implement, share and promote inclusive pedagogical approaches and work-based learning practices, including apprenticeships, targeting VET learners and staff fleeing the war in Ukraine. Projects under this priority should build on high quality standards and substantial experience in the integration of newcomers in learning and training environments. They can focus on language training, integration of learners into VET, including into work-based learning and apprenticeship schemes (with support, as possible, from Ukrainian teacher and trainers fleeing the war), processes of recognition of skills and qualifications, with Ukrainian institutions, practices supporting psycho-social well-being of learners and staff fleeing war, etc.

Erasmus+ Priorities in the field of adult education

Priority will be given to projects that empower and enable adults to participate in training in order to reduce skills gaps and labour market shortages as well as promote and facilitate the participation of adults in learning. In particular, projects that build on individual learning accounts and enabling frameworks (including validation and guidance opportunities and effective motivation strategies).

This priority provides support for creation and development of flexible learning offers adapted to the learning needs of adults, for example by developing digital and blended learning opportunities. Priority is also given to projects working on validation of skills certified by micro-credentials or acquired through informal and non-formal learning.

This priority aims to support local learning environments, to promote social inclusion, civic engagement and democracy, and to attract and offer everyone in the community lifelong and life-wide learning opportunities, also by exploiting digital technologies and including measures for outreach and the engagement of learners. Projects could, for example, encourage local learning centres, libraries, museums, prisons, civil society and the wider community (NGOs, local authorities, health, culture etc.) to work together to motivate and enable adults of all ages to learn the life skills and key competences necessary to be resilient and adaptable in the face of change and uncertainty.

This priority aims at promoting new adult education opportunities, particularly for adults with a low level of skills, knowledge and competences. Creation of new upskilling pathways should allow adult learners to enhance their key competences and to progress towards higher qualifications. Complementary work covered under this priority includes developing guidance as a service to ensure that adults have access to relevant learning throughout life, improving skills identification and screening, designing tailored learning offers, and developing effective outreach, guidance and motivation strategies.

Priority is given particularly to projects that develop staff competences that lead to overall improvements in provision, in line with the green and digital transitions. In particular, priority will be given to projects that support educators, including leadership teams, to teach and act for sustainability and to develop the digital competences of educators, e.g. through the Digital Opportunity Traineeships (DOTs) and improve teaching methods and tools through effective use of innovative solutions and digital technologies. Priority will be given to projects that target the development of skills to recognise and respond to individual learning needs e.g. designing tailored paths or plans adapted to learner background and circumstances, the assessment of prior knowledge and skills of adult learners, better and more innovative teaching methods, as well as strengthening the supporting role the adult education staff has in motivating, guiding and advising learners in challenging learning situations.

Priority is given to projects that create and promote inter-generational learning, including learning opportunities and exchanges of experiences of all age groups, including seniors, with a view to building better understanding of the European Union and its values, and strengthening European identity.

This priority supports the development of better quality assurance mechanisms for adult learning policies and provision. In particular, this includes development and transfer of monitoring methodologies to measure effectiveness of adult education provision and to track the progress of adult learners.

This priority supports projects aiming to implement, share and promote inclusive pedagogical approaches and work-based practices targeting adult learners and staff fleeing the war in Ukraine. Projects under this priority should build on high quality standards and substantial experience in the integration of newcomers in learning and training environments. They can aim at providing language facilities, applying and expanding research, exchanging with Ukrainian institutions, exploring good practices supporting psycho-social well-being of learners and staff fleeing war, etc.

Erasmus+ Priorities in the field of youth

The priority aims to foster active citizenship among young people, notably through volunteering and acts of solidarity, and thereby strengthen young people’s sense of initiative, particularly in the social field, and support their communities. Projects under this priority could also promote entrepreneurship, creative learning and social entrepreneurship among youth. Intercultural dialogue, knowledge and recognition of diversity and promotion of tolerance are key to this priority.

The priority aims to promote the recognition and validation of youth work and informal and non-formal learning on all levels, and support quality development and innovation in youth work, in line with the priorities enshrined in the European Youth Work Agenda and the Bonn Declaration of December 2020. This includes capacity-building of youth workers in their online and offline practices, as well as support to the development and sharing of methods to reach marginalised young people, prevent racism and intolerance among youth, and the risks, opportunities and implications of digitalisation

The priority aims to strengthen young people’s key competences and basic skills. The youth sector plays an important role in easing the transition of young people from youth to adulthood, including supporting their integration into the labour market. Activities focusing on the inclusion and employability of young people with fewer opportunities (including NEETs), with particular emphasis on young people at risk of marginalisation and those with a migrant background, are at the core of this priority.

This priority addresses the need for stronger links between policy, research and practice in the youth field to provide improved evidence of needs and facilitate policy making. Activities to promote better knowledge about the situation of young people and youth policies in Europe and beyond will be of importance to this priority.

This priority supports projects aiming to implement, share and promote inclusive approaches and practices targeting young people and youth workers fleeing the war in Ukraine and youth work providers of receiving countries actively involved in such activities. Activities should adhere to the principles of youth work, including non-formal and intercultural learning, and should contribute to promoting and understanding of human rights and democracy and to increase the capacity of participating organisations. They can aim at providing language facilities, applying and expanding research, enhancing synergies and complementarities with organisations active in the field of youth in Ukraine, exploring good practices supporting psycho-social well-being of young refugees and refugee youth workers from Ukraine, and fostering capacity-building of youth work organisations – in Ukraine and in receiving countries – etc.

Support of people with fewer opportunities

The list of potential barriers, spelt out below, is not exhaustive and is meant to provide a reference in taking action with a view to increasing accessibility and outreach to people with fewer opportunities. These barriers can hinder their participation both as a stand-alone factor and in combination among them:

This includes physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments which, in interaction with various barriers, may hinder someone’s full and effective participation in society on the same footing as others.

Barriers may result from health issues including severe illnesses, chronic diseases, or any  other physical or mental health-related situation that prevents from participating in the programme.

Individuals struggling to perform in education and training systems for various reasons, early school-leavers, NEETs (people not in education, employment or training) and low-skilled adults may face barriers. Although other factors may play a role, these educational difficulties, while they may also be linked to personal circumstances, mostly result from an educational system which creates structural limitations and/or does not fully take into account the individual’s particular needs. Individuals can also face barriers to participation when the structure of curricula makes it difficult to undertake a learning or training mobility abroad as part of their studies.

While cultural differences may be perceived as barriers by people from any backgrounds, they can particularly affect people with fewer opportunities. Such differences may represent significant barriers to learning in general, all the more for people with a migrant or refugee background – especially newly-arrived migrants -, people belonging to a national or ethnic minority, sign language users, people with linguistic adaptation and cultural inclusion difficulties, etc. Being exposed to foreign languages and cultural differences when taking part in any kind of programme activities may put off individuals and somehow limit the benefits from their participation. And such cultural differences may even prevent potential participants from applying for support through the programme, thereby representing an entry barrier altogether.

Social adjustment difficulties such as limited social competences, anti-social or high-risk behaviours, (former) offenders, (former) drug or alcohol abusers, or social marginalisation may represent a barrier. Other social barriers can stem from family circumstances, for instance being the first in the family to access higher education or being a parent (especially a single parent), a caregiver, a breadwinner or an orphan, or having lived or currently living in institutional care.

Economic disadvantage like a low standard of living, low income, learners who need to work to support themselves, dependence on the social welfare system, in long-term unemployment, precarious situations or poverty, being homeless, in debt or with financial problems, etc., may represent a barrier. Other difficulties may derive from the limited transferability of services (in particular support to people with fewer opportunities) that needs to be “mobile” together with the participants when going to a far place or, all the more, abroad.  

Barriers can occur as a result of discriminations linked to gender, age, ethnicity, religion, beliefs, sexual orientation, disability, or intersectional factors (a combination of two or several of the mentioned discrimination barriers).

  • Living in remote or rural areas, on small islands or in peripheral/outermost regions, in urban suburbs, in less serviced areas (limited public transport, poor facilities) or less developed areas in third countries, etc., may constitute a barrier.

Glossary of Terms

All forms of non-vocational adult education, whether of a formal, non-formal or informal nature (for continuous vocational training see “VET”).

Any adult who, having completed or being no longer involved in initial education or training, returns to some forms of non-vocational continuing learning (formal, non-formal or informal). For the purpose of the  Erasmus+ projects, educational staff (teachers, trainers, educators, academic and youth staff, etc.)  in any of the Erasmus+ sector cannot be considered as adult learners in Adult Education. Staff members formally linked to their working educational organization (school, vocational education and training, school education, higher education and adult education organization, etc.) may participate in activities for staff in a relevant  sector of the Erasmus+ programme.

In youth mobility projects, a group leader is an adult of at least 18 years old who joins the young people participating in a Youth Exchange or DiscoverEU Inclusion Action in order to ensure their effective learning (Youthpass), protection and safety.

Group of at least four young people which does not have legal personality under the applicable national law, provided that their representatives have the legal capacity to undertake legal obligations on their behalf. These groups of young people can be applicants and partners in some Actions of Erasmus+. For the purpose of simplification, they are assimilated to legal persons (organisations, institutions, etc.) in this Guide and fit within the notion of Erasmus+ participating organisations for the Key Action 1 actions in which they can take part. The group must be composed of at least four young persons and their age should be according with the overall age of the young people in the programme (13-30). In exceptional cases and if all young people are minors, the group could be represented by an adult. This would allow a group of young people (where all are minors) with a help of a youth worker/coach to submit an application.

A professional or a volunteer involved in non-formal learning who supports young people in their personal socio-educational, and professional development.

The European tool to improve the recognition of the learning outcomes of young people and youth workers from their participation in projects supported by the Erasmus+ Programme. Youthpass consists of: a) certificates that can be obtained by participants in several Actions of the Programme; and b) a defined process which supports young people, youth workers and youth organisations to reflect about the learning outcomes from an Erasmus+ project in the field of youth and non-formal learning. Youthpass is also part of a broader European Commission strategy which aims to enhance the recognition of non-formal and informal learning and of youth work in Europe and beyond.

Without prejudice to national terminology, apprenticeships are understood as formal vocational education and training schemes that:
1) combine learning in education or training institutions with substantial work-based learning in companies and other workplaces,
2) lead to nationally recognised qualifications,
3) are based on an agreement defining the rights and obligations of the apprentice, the employer and, where appropriate, the vocational education and training institution, and
4) include payment or other compensation to the apprentice for the work-based component.

Vocational education and training is to be understood as the education and training which aims to equip young people and adults with knowledge, skills and competences required in particular occupations or more broadly on the labour market. It may be provided in formal and in non-formal settings, at all levels of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF), including tertiary level, if applicable. For the purpose of Erasmus+, projects focusing on initial or continuing vocational education and training are eligible under VET actions.

A person enrolled in an initial or continuous vocational education and training programme or a person who has recently graduated or obtained a qualification from such a programme.

Acquisition of knowledge and skills through carrying out – and reflecting on – tasks in a vocational context, either at the workplace (such as alternance training) or in a vocational education and training institution.

A person who accompanies participants (learners, staff, young people or youth workers) in a mobility activity in order to ensure their safety, provide support and assistance, as well as assist with the participant’s effective learning during the mobility experience. In individual activities, an accompanying person may accompany participants with fewer opportunities or minors and youngsters with little experience outside their own country. In case of group activities in the field of education and training, qualified education staff must accompany the group to facilitate the learning process.

These are partners from the public or private sector that contribute to the implementation of specific project tasks/activities or support the promotion and sustainability of the project, but that for contractual management aspects are not considered to be beneficiaries, and do not receive any funding from the Programme as part of the project (they do not have the right to charge costs or claim contributions.).

When a project is approved for an Erasmus+ grant, the applicant organisation becomes a beneficiary by signing a contract with the National or Executive Agency that has selected the project. If the application was made on behalf of other participating organisations, the partners may become co-beneficiaries of the grant.

Combination of physical mobility and a virtual component, facilitating collaborative online learning exchange/teamwork.

Call for proposals

The principle under which part of the costs of a project supported by the EU must be born by the beneficiary, or covered through external contributions other than the EU grant.

Two or more participating organisations teaming up to prepare, implement and follow up a project or an activity within a project. A consortium may be national (i.e. involving organisations established in the same country) or international (involving participating organisations from different countries).

Involves the confident, critical and responsible use of, and engagement with, digital technologies for learning, at work, and for participation in society. It includes information and data literacy, communication and collaboration, media literacy, digital content creation (including programming), safety (including digital well-being and competences related to cybersecurity), intellectual property related questions, problem solving and critical thinking.

An unforeseeable exceptional situation or event beyond the participant’s control and not attributable to error or negligence on his/her part.

Fundamental skills to the transition to a low-carbon economy, which can be general such as sustainable agriculture, soil protection, energy use and waste reduction, or more technical such as knowledge on renewable energy.

Travel that uses low-emissions means of transport for the main part of the travel, such as bus, train or car-pooling.

Learning resulting from daily activities and experiences which is not organised or structured in terms of objectives, time or learning support; it may be unintentional from the learner’s perspective.

A stay at a partner organisation in another country with the aim of receiving training by following practitioners in their daily work in the receiving organisation, exchanging good practices, acquiring skills and knowledge and/or building long-term partnerships through participative observation.

Moving physically to a country other than the country of residence, possibly combined with a period of virtual participation, in order to undertake study, training or non-formal or informal learning. It may take the form of traineeships, apprenticeships, youth exchanges, teaching or participation in a professional development activity, and may include preparatory activities, such as training in the host language, as well as sending, receiving and follow-up activities.

Statements of what a participant knows, understands and is able to do on completion of a learning process, which are defined in terms of knowledge, skills and competence.

Any participating organisation that has not received support in a given type of action supported by this Programme or its predecessor programme more than twice in the last seven years. This category includes the category of “first-time applicants”, as defined above.

Learning in all its forms, whether formal, non-formal or informal, taking place at all stages in life and resulting in an improvement or update in knowledge, skills, competences and attitudes or participation in society from a personal, civic, cultural, social or employment-related perspective, including the provision of counselling and guidance services; it includes early childhood education and care, general education, vocational education and training, higher education, adult education, youth work and other learning settings outside formal education and training and it typically promotes cross-sectoral cooperation and flexible learning pathways.

An agreement between the sending and receiving organisation and the participating individuals, defining the aims and content of the mobility period in order to ensure its relevance and quality. It can also be used as a basis for recognition of the period abroad by the receiving organisation.

Stands for “Massive Open Online Course,” a type of course that is completely delivered online, is open to be accessed by anyone without cost, entry qualifications or other restrictions;participant numbers are often high. These courses can have in-person components, e.g. encouraging local participant meetings, and formal assessment, but tend to use peer review, self-assessment and automated grading. There are many variations of MOOCs, focused on specific sectors, target groups (e.g. vocational focus, teachers, etc.) or teaching methods. MOOCs funded under Erasmus+ have to be open to all and both the participation and a certificate or badge of completion are free of charge for participants. The open access requirement for educational resources applies also to MOOCs and other complete courses.

A body in charge of managing the implementation of the Programme at national level in a Member State or in a third country associated to the Programme. One or more National Agencies may exist in each country.

Any organisation or institution that has not previously received support in a given type of action supported by this Programme or its predecessor programme either as a coordinator or a partner.

Learning which takes place through planned learning activities where some form of learning support is present, but which is not part of the formal education and training system.

The Organisation ID (OID) uniquely identifies your organisation among all organisations participating in the Erasmus+ and European Solidarity Corps actions managed by National Agencies. You can use your organisation’s OID when applying for an accreditation or grant under the Erasmus+ and European Solidarity Corps actions managed by National Agencies.

Educational materials of any kind (e.g. textbooks, worksheets, lesson plans, instructional videos, entire online courses, educational games) which can be freely used, adapted and shared. OERs have either been released under an open licence or are in the public domain (i.e. copyright protection has expired). Cost-free materials that cannot be adapted and shared by the public are not OERs.

A way for copyright holders (creators or other rightsholders) to grant the general public the legal permission to freely use their work. Under the Erasmus+ Open Access Requirement, any such open license must permit at least use, adaptation and distribution. The open license should be indicated on the work itself or wherever the work is distributed. Educational materials with an open license are called Open Educational Resources (OERs).

Individual who is fully involved in a project and who may receive European Union funding intended to cover the costs of participation (notably travel and subsistence).

An organisation or informal group of young people involved in a Erasmus+ project, as either coordinator or partner.

A partner organisations is an organisation formally involved in the project (co-beneficiaries) but not taking the role of coordinator.

An agreement between a group of institutions or organisations to carry out joint activities and projects.

People with fewer opportunities means people who, for economic, social, cultural, geographical or health reasons, a migrant background, or for reasons such as disability and educational difficulties or for any other reasons, including those that can give rise to discrimination under article 21 of the Charter of Fundamental rights of the European Union, face obstacles that prevent them from having effective access to opportunities under the programme.

A reciprocal learning activity, which is mutually beneficial and involves the sharing of knowledge, ideas and experience between the participants. Peer learning practices enable to interact with other participants, their peers, and participate in activities where they can learn from each other and meet educational, professional and/or personal development goals.

Visits to the country of the receiving organisation prior to the start of mobility activities to prepare and ensure high quality of those activities. Examples include tasks to facilitate administrative arrangements and build trust and understanding between organisations involved.

In the context of the Erasmus+ Programme, individuals aged between 13 and 30.