The Danish VET system is governed by target and quality performance management. Statistics play a central role in the monitoring of system performance. The legislation stipulates that the colleges must have a quality assurance system in place, and the ongoing monitoring is supported by development and research.

The Ministry of Education is responsible for inspection and quality assurance and has fully detailed its approach in the Danish Approach to Quality in line with the EQAVET principles. An important aspect of the quality assurance is output monitoring of VET providers, including output targets and indicators. Although the Ministry has the overall responsibility, other actors play important roles, namely the social partners, in particular trade committees and local training committees, but also the trainees themselves, as well as enterprises through employer associations.

An important part of the monitoring of the VET providers is organized through the “Action plan for increased implementation” (Handleplan for øget gennemførelse). This is a performance and management tool that every provider is required to use in their quality and strategy work.

There are four main sections to the action plan:

1. Clear targets according to the four clear objectives in the 2015 VET reform. For example, more students must choose VET directly from compulsory school (25 pct. in 2020), more students must complete VET (60% by 2020), VET must challenge all students so they may reach their fullest potential, and trust and well-being in VET must be strengthened.
2. Plan for matching apprenticeship contracts to student demands.
3. A plan for a common pedagogical and didactic foundation and differentiated teaching.
4. Plan for a specific theme of the year (there is no specific theme for 2018).

The Ministry of Education is also responsible for setting up different initiatives to monitor, evaluate and research different aspects of the VET systems. The Danish research community within VET is dispersed. Since 2012, it has been possible for the university college sector to carry out research, where research funding has been allocated to strengthen the research base and the educational programs at the university colleges. The Danish National Centre for the Development of Vocational Education and Training (NCE) at the Metropolitan University College is developing a knowledge center for VET and since 2013 has initiated research projects.

Besides the universities (notably Roskilde University and Aarhus University) and NCE, there are also a number of other institutions conducting studies of VET. One of them is VIVE – The Danish Centre of Applied Social Science (Det Nationale Forsknings- og Analysecenter for Velfærd). This organization has been commissioned by the Ministry of Education to monitor the implementation of the 2014 VET reform (www.vive.dk). Another institution is EVA – the Danish Evaluation Institute (Danmarks Evalueringsinstitut) – which conducts systematic evaluations of the education system, including VET. In addition, the Ministry of Education has a large statistical database, which plays a central role in the planning and monitoring of VET.

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