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Project EUROPROF - New forms of education of professionals in vocational education and training
Overview "The aim of the project was to conduct transnational research leading to the identification of new occupational profiles for vocational education and training (VET) professional, for trainers, planners and managers of VET in Europe, and to the establishment of new curricula and education and training programmes for those professionals... A central theme of the EUROPROF project is that one way to implement more fully a transformation in the role of VET professionals is through seeking to generate a 'community of practice' among VET researcher and developers, practitioners and policy makers." (Brown, 1997c, p. 1, 2).

Two issues concerned the project design and methodology: 

# "Traditionally international projects in vocational education and training have tended to work with a comparative methodology, through an examination of the different national systems for VET. Rather than following this approach EUROPROF adopted a more collaborative or co-operative research style, through both building trasnational teams to focus on common research questions, and through a process of mutual learning based on national research. The aim is not to transfer features from one national system to another, but rather to use the analysis of different national systems as a springboard for the development of new ideas and innovations... 

# The second methodological issue relates to the question of different national cultures and traditions... A European qualification implies a degree of conformity in terms of recognition, curriculum, organisation and pedagogy. At the same time it is necessary to respect and capitalise on different traditions of education in the different countries and on the different regional and national economic needs such education programmes will address..." (Attwell, 1997, p. 4)

The project was constructed around cornerstones for development. The partners produced a curriculum framework outlining the structure and content of a new masters (MA) Degree qualification (Attwell, 1997, p. 9). (Brown, 1997c, p. 2)

Insight The joint cornerstone statements served as a basis for developing common meaning and common points of orientation for curriculum development that may take place in different circumstances (Kämäräinen, 2001). 

"Since the EUROPROF project didn't understand itself primarily as a comparative research project but as a collaborative research project, the project didn't have similar criteria for reflecting cross-cultural learning as [INTEQUAL/ DUOQUAL and POST-16 STRATEGIES/ SPES-NET]. Thus, for the EUROPROF project the task to promote cross-cultural learning didn't manifest itself as a reflection on possible lessons to learn from other countries' policy developments or from curricular schemes. Instead, the focus on cross-cultural learning was directed towards working with shared ideas and innovation models on a common platform. However, in this respect the EUROPROF project had difficulties to reflect the actual possibility of different national partners to promote the ideas that were analysed in the EUROPROF project. Thus, the project had difficulties in developing a differentiated strategy that would take into account the different preconditions for implementation." (Kämäräinen, 2001)

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