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Accreditation of Formal, Non-formal and Informal Theological Education

Recognition of Formal, Non-Formal, and Informal Learning

This document is part of a set of guidelines that relate to accreditation. It provides Guidelines for the Recognition of Formal, non-Formal, and Informal Learning, which include principles, criteria, and procedures for academic policies that recognize different kinds of learning.

A module of studies normally consists of a number of predefined and structured learning activities – the so-called curriculum. Such a curriculum is characterised by clearly defined learning outcomes, proper coherence and integration as well as appropriate progression and process. However, It is a common understanding in education today that significant and relevant learning occurs outside (prior to and alongside) the formalized module of studies. As more students enter formal education with considerable prior experience, and stakeholders more urgently ask for skills and competencies which often are not covered by traditional curricula but acquired ‘in practice’, the entire realm of informal and non-formal learning comes into focus.

This is where the recognition of non-formal and informal learning comes into play. With these guidelines, the ECTE seeks to equip institutions as they engage with this realm.

We offer these updated guidelines as a tool in helping our stakeholders to progress toward greater fitness for service for God’s greater glory in Europe.

ECTE Review Committee
Dr. Steffen Schulte, Chairman
Dr. Marvin Oxenham, General Secretary
Carmen Crouse, Accreditation Director

To read the full document, click here.