What is the NQF?

Darstellung NQRThe National Qualifications Framework (NQF) is an instrument for describing qualifications. They are described by allocating them to one of eight qualification levels, ranging from basic (Level 1) to specialist (Level 8). Each level is characterised by descriptors: These are generally formulated characteristics that refer to the learning outcomes associated with a level. Learning outcomes are expressed as knowledge, skills and competence (i.e. the degree of autonomy and responsibility).

With the entry into force of the NQF Act on 15 March 2016, the NQF was established in Austria. The NQF Act, which implements the EU recommendation on the European Qualifications Framework (EQF), provides the legal basis for the allocation of qualifications in Austria. All allocated qualifications are published in the NQF register.


How are qualifications allocated?

VerfahrenThe allocation of a qualification to the NQF is voluntary on the basis of an allocation request. This must be sent to the NQF Coordination Point (NCP) and is reviewed by the NQF bodies defined in the NQF Act. Both legally regulated qualifications (i.e. formal qualifications) and non-formal qualifications that have no legal basis can be allocated.

The requirements for allocation are the same for formal and non-formal qualifications. The allocation procedure is also basically identical, only the submitting body differs: In the case of formal qualifications, the responsible ministry submits the allocation request; in the case of non-formal qualifications, this task is performed by the NQF service unit, which becomes active on the initiative of the qualification provider.