Life Long Learning is a beautiful concept, which is supported by 8 key competences. These competences help you by learning and developing constantly. They are necessary for personal fulfillment and development, social inclusion, active citizenship and employment. Besides this, they are essential in a knowledge society and guarantee more flexibility in the labor force. For innovation, productivity and competitiveness, the competences are a major factor and they contribute to the motivation and satisfaction of workers. This altogether results in a higher quality of work. What do the 8 Key competences mean for youth? They create a good basis to proceed the learning process . For adults, they create a process of developing and constant updating of skills. There is no difference between people with high or low skills, people with disabilities or not, unemployed or employed; the Key Competences can be developed and used by everybody.
We would like to share these competences with you because we are an organization that is involved in several educational/cultural programmes like the “Youth in Action programme” and the Leonardo Da Vinci- “Life Long Learning programme”. In our opinion it is very important that youth, but also adults, keep on developing and learning during their whole lives. These competences can help you in that and during this developing process, you can keep an overview of your skills and knowledge by using the
“Youthpass”; the tool we wrote about last time. The 8 Key Competences are:
- Communication in the mother tongue, which is the ability to express and interpreted concepts, thoughts, feelings, facts and opinions in both oral and written form and to interact linguistically in an appropriate and creative way in a full range of societal and cultural contexts.
- Communication in foreign languages, which involves, in addition to the main skill dimensions of communication in the mother tongue, mediation and intercultural understanding.
- Mathematical competence and basic competences in science and technology. Mathematical competence is the ability to develop and apply mathematical thinking in order to solve a range of problems in everyday situations, with the emphasis being placed on process, activity and knowledge.
- Digital competence involves the confident and critical use of information society technology (IST) and thus basic skills in information and communication technology (ICT).
- Learning to learn is related to learning, the ability to pursue and organize one’s own learning, either individually or in groups, in accordance with one’s own needs, and awareness of methods and opportunities.
- Social and civic competences. Social competence refers to personal, interpersonal and intercultural competence and all forms of behaviour that equip individuals to participate in an effective and constructive way in social and working life. Civic competence, and particularly knowledge of social and political concepts and structures (democracy, justice, equality, citizenship and civil rights), equips individuals to engage in active and democratic participation;
- Sense of initiative and entrepreneurship is the ability to turn ideas into action. It involves creativity, innovation and risk-taking, as well as the ability to plan and manage projects in order to achieve objectives.
- Cultural awareness and expression, which involves appreciation of the importance of the creative expression of ideas, experiences and emotions in a range of media (music, performing arts, literature and the visual arts).
These key competences are all interdependent, and the emphasis in each case lies on critical thinking, creativity, initiative, problem solving, risk assessment, decision taking and constructive management of feelings.