Long Title: Lifelong Learning Transfer: Strategy Development & Competence Management
Fernfachhochschule Schweiz
affiliation: SUPSI
Universität Zürich
Université de Genève
Hochschule Luzern
Universitäre Fernstudien Schweiz (unfunded partner)
SWITCH - Teleinformatikdienste für Lehre und Forschung
ETH Zürich
Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz
Domain: ELS
Status: finished
Start Date: 04.01.2011
End Date: 31.07.2012
Project Leader: C. Eggs

The break with education for students once they have completed their course is to be a thing of the past. Learning thus takes on a new dimension which is supported by e-Learning and e-Collaboration. To make such a vision real the project team will develop guidelines for lifelong learning strategy development and check the feasibility of a competence profiler application.

(see also Skill Profiler)


Component Description
LLL-transfer LLL-transfer checklists (online tool)
LLL-transfer forge space All documents and further information about the project
State of the Art Report Lifelong Learning in Strategies of Swiss Higher Education Institutions
Feasibility Report Feasibility Report: Competency Management (Profiler). Based on this report the proposal for a "Skill Profiler" project was submitted.

The project followed two main goals: First, the elaboration of a study about the implementation of Lifelong Learning in order to produce guidelines and checklists for the implementation of Lifelong Learning in HEI's strategies.
Secondly, the feasibility study for an application (of a so called Skill Profiler) which contains the analysis and integration of important stakeholders and the description of the workflow, the process of entering/generating, processing, validating and comparing data describing the competences as well as the technical feasibility.
The project and its results have been presented at the ePic Conference 2011 in London, at the eduhub days 2011, at the Career Service Annual meeting as well as at informal meetings (e.g. with representatives from Uni-emploie of University of Geneva and FH Schweiz).

The LLL-transfer tool is hosted by FFHS. All Swiss universities can use the checklists and guidelines for free.

Initial Situation

Lifelong learning (LLL) is a concept denoting all the learning activities that a person engages in over the course of their life in order to improve their knowledge, their qualifications and their competences.
LLL has become a catchphrase over the past few years on both the Swiss and the European education landscape, now that people have realised that learning must extend "from the cradle to the grave". This awareness has led to many universities introducing (generally isolated individual) measures to implement this concept. A large number of universities still equate this concept with "continuing education", ignoring alumni structures, portfolios and general professional advancement as key aspects of LLL. Hence there is neither a joint, comprehensive understanding of the significance of LLL at present, nor specific measures upheld by a majority of the universities.
At national and European level, endeavours have recently been undertaken to fill the strategic gap and draw up guidelines for formulating a strategy (EUA, 2008).
Switzerland does not have the appropriate reports, action plans or technical solutions for the compilation of LLL strategies, even if a national committee of experts was set up, which is drawing up a proposal for the incorporation of LLL in the new Federal Law on the Advancement of Universities and Coordination in Swiss Higher Education, and Switzerland is participating from 2011 on in the EU framework programme for lifelong learning (LLP) as a full member.
The Bologna Reform is changing the contents of (lifelong) university degrees and promoting the development of interdisciplinary competences that have featured less prominently in degrees to date. The significance of transferable competences and soft skills is increasing to a major extent, yet there is a lack of practicable instruments for making these competences visible even though several initiatives are devoted to the mapping of competences within Switzerland.


The main aim of the project is to create guidelines for anchoring lifelong learning in university strategy and work out a feasibility study for a competence profiling application as a first step in view of a more sophisticated competence management.
At institutional level LLL-transfer will provide the Swiss universities with LLL Strategy Guidelines, containing guides and checklists for anchoring lifelong learning in their strategy. A joint understanding of lifelong learning is to be promoted, and the universities will be supported in their compilation of suitable measures for implementing the strategy.
For individual LLL management the feasibility of an application ("skill profiler") will be clarified, permitting students to engage in selective competence management during and after their studies and thus enabling them to better steer their acquisition of knowledge and skills over the long term, in the sense of lifelong learning. As starting point for a profiling application we choose the necessary adjustment/mapping of student's soft skills with the competences required on the job market.


Responsibles for strategy development at the Swiss universities will be provided with orientation aids in the form of working papers, guidelines and checklists (LLL Strategy Guidelines) for the development and implementation of a lifelong learning strategy.
Career services, continuing education offices, alumni organisations and student (specialist) advisory services will benefit from the measures at organisational level (LLL strategy implementation) and from the feasibility study, since they offer services for students and may profit by an application for optimising the consultation and development measures.
Students benefit from the implementation of an LLL strategy at the universities (such as from a broader range of continuing education courses at the universities, or from improved opportunities to compare courses or offerings in the field of lifelong learning). If on a further stage an application will be developed, they may also profit by an improved competence management (as comparision of skills with requirement profiles or course offers).


A state-of-the-art analysis will lead on to a best-practice report on the incorporation of lifelong learning in university strategies, as well as to a catalogue of measures containing guides and checklists. These, in turn, will give rise to the LLL Strategy Guidelines and provide the universities with an instrument for embedding lifelong learning in their strategy. To spread the material workshops with stakeholders and webinars for interested parties will be offered.

The feasibility study for a competence management application will include the following steps:

  • analysis of existing applications,
  • requirement analysis (users, stakeholders, technically),
  • desciption of use cases,
  • analysis and integration of important stakeholders,
  • choice of a competence (soft skill) subset,
  • description of the workflow,
  • modelling of process (entering/generating, processing, validating and comparision of data describing the competences)
  • design of general software infrastructure, data models, user interfaces and interfaces with other software applications,
  • description of financial and time preconditions.

If the results justify the development of an application, the feasibility study will be integrated in a new project proposal.