The decision to follow vocational training is made at the end of the 5th year (5e) (third year of general secondary education) based on an opinion of the class council as well as academic results and interests of the student.
3 training options lead to the following qualifications:
· the vocational capacity certificate, normal duration : 3 years ;
· the vocational aptitude diploma, normal duration : 3 years ;
· the technician’s diploma, normal duration : 4 years.
Vocational training can take the form of :
- Régime concomitant (concurrent education) : part of the vocational training takes place in a training organisation (under a vocational training contract), the other part (one to three days a week) takes place in an educational establishment;
- Régime mixte (mixed education), the student attends professional classes in an educational establishment on a full-time basis for one year. After that, the student will be completing the rest of his/her training in the form of concurrent education ;
- Régime à plein temps (full-time education) takes place in an educational establishment with an on-the-job training period of at least 12 weeks (under an internship contract).
Vocational Capacity Certificate (CCP)
It provides students with the basic professional and social skills that are necessary to enter the job market.
It normally covers 3 years and is organised in modules with continuous assessment under a vocational training contract, i.e. an important part takes place in the training organisation while the student spends the rest of the time in school (one to three days a week).
After accomplishing the CCP the student can continue his/her training leading up to a vocational aptitude diploma (DAP) in the same speciality field.
Vocational aptitude diploma (DAP)
It provides access to the job market as a qualified employee under a vocational training contract or an internship contract (minimum 12 weeks of on-the-job training with a normal duration of 3 years).
After accomplishing the DAP the student can take up studies to obtain a technician’s diploma (DT) in the same speciality field, enrol in the higher grades of general secondary education or in the curriculum of a master craftsman's diploma (brevet de maîtrise).
Technician’s diploma (DT)
This curriculum includes very extensive vocational training allowing students to directly enter the job market or enrol in higher technical education in the speciality field of their diploma provided they pass the preparatory modules for higher technical education. The technician’s diploma differs from the CCP and the DAP by a more advanced and diversified skill profile and more extensive general knowledge.
The normal duration is 4 years.
It is mostly organized under an internship contract (minimum 12 weeks in total).
After completing the DT students can continue their training either by enrolling in the higher grades of general secondary education or by following the preparatory modules of higher technical education. These modules can be acquired during the normal time of the studies or after completing the training. This specific qualification is documented by a diploma supplement granting access to higher technical education in the specialty field of the training.
Modules and European credits
Vocational training is structured in form of European credits, that are in turn subdivided into modules.
Students who have passed a module, move on to the next module. Students who fail to pass a module, may follow the same module again during normal school hours without having to repeat the entire year.
Several modules together form a European credit. European credits cover modules preparing for a specific activity in a trade or profession.
Except in case of the re-enrolment in the first year of a training programme, modules that students have successfully passed remain acquired for life. For students re-enrolling in a training programme of which the assessment referential has changed in the meantime, the director of vocational training can decide, upon written request of the student, to grant exemptions.
The structure in European credits and modules is the key element of a life-long learning concept as the validation of acquired modules allows every person who interrupted their studies at some point to resume their training without having to start from the very beginning.
See also Apprenticeship and Assessment.
On-the-job experience in training organisations
Vocational training is designed and organised in a way to promote on-the-job experience.
This can take two different forms:
- On-the-job training : students have the status of apprentice and sign a contract with a training organisation while attending class during a certain number of hours per week.
- Internship : students have the status of trainee ; they spend the major part of the training at school and a minimum of 12 weeks in an internship with a company.
Partnership with professionals
Vocational training is based on a partnership between the school and professionals: the State, the chambers of employers (chambres professionnelles patronales) and the chamber of employees (chambre professionnelle salariale) are closely involved in vocational training.
A committee for vocational training (Comité à la formation professionnelle), provide for by the law on the reform of vocational training, defines the broad orientation, monitors the evolutions and warrants that the objectives of vocational training match the needs of Luxembourg economy.
The framework programmes (professional profile, training profile and master plan) as well as the assessment referential of the various training programmes are prepared by the curricula teams including representatives of the academic and the professional world.
Curricula are prepared by the national training commissions (Commissions nationales de formation) with representatives of each high school involved in the training as well as representatives of the professional world.