Vocational Cooperative Learning Triangles

Using Cooperative Learning
to promote Employer

Vocol Triangles is an Erasmus+ KA2 project to bring together the worlds of work, vocational education and learners using cooperative learning techniques. The partners come from six European countries: Sweden, Spain, Germany, Scotland, Check Republic and Iceland.

Vocational education and training (VET) learners must develop relevant transferable skills required for the workplace. To ensure these skills are transferred, VET teachers need stronger links with employers so their learners can interact meaningfully with them. This problem (or opportunity) is clearly recognised in business.

1st European Business Forum on Vocational Training (2012) states promoting collaboration between business & VET is pivotal to ensure proper alignment between what businesses need & what institutions teach their future employees. Cooperation around work-based learning of VET students is beneficial to all the 3 actors: the learner, the company & the VET organisation (the learning triangle). Most companies regard technical skills as the basics –the must haves – but having staff with suitable technical skills alone does not make a company stand out. What makes the difference is the level of transversal skills. Employers stress that these transversal skills enable skilled employees to fully utilise their technical expertise, put it into practice & contribute to company growth, learning & innovation.

The consortium will therefore transfer & implement an innovative student-centred pedagogy, Cooperative Learning (COL) to develop transversal skills.

We will identify innovation-friendly employers to work with trained VET staff, to create tasks (real workplace tasks framed as learning outcomes) for transversal skills development. Employers, learners & staff will work on tasks together as peers in Vocational Cooperative Learning (VoCOL) Triangles promoting engagement by bringing together the worlds of work & VET.

One part of the project was that InterCultural Iceland would give a one week training course for 20 vocational teachers from all participating countries. These teachers would then later give a shorter workshop for other teachers in their home countries. You can find a short text about the training course here and a short film from the course here
The course website can be found here