Top tips for preparing an Erasmus + application

Top tips for preparing an Erasmus + application as identified during the EfVET 23rd Annual Conference in Porto

António Nunes National Agency Portugal

Rosaleen Courtney & Marny Thompson

Successful KA2 Applications

Getting organised

Call for proposals, priorities & deadlines

Programme Guide

Key Action Guide for Applicants

Expert evaluator guide

Application form

PIC & mandates

Round 1 Award criteria

                                                              Maximum score

Balance of project                                                                        30

Quality of project design and implementation                           20

Quality of project team and cooperation arrangements              20

Impact and dissemination                                                     30

Total                                                                                          100

Relevance of Project

Contribute to  priorities ET2020

Use EU tools

Justify need in each partner country

Clear measurable objectives

Show innovation

Priorities – tackle youth unemployment, VET more attractive, emphasis on WBL, recognition non formal & informal, partnership business & HE

EU tools – ECVET, EQF, EQARF, Europass, QA systems

Research all partner countries to justify the need- clear rationale and research on what already exists e.g. resources

Develop skills – digital, employability, entrepreneurial, linguistic

ET2020 four strategic objectives for the framework:

making lifelong learning and mobility a reality – progress is needed in the implementation of lifelong learning strategies, the development of national qualifications frameworks linked to the European Qualifications Framework and more flexible learning pathways. Mobility should be expanded and the European Quality Charter for Mobility should be applied;

Improving the quality and efficiency of education and training – all citizens need to be able to acquire key competencies and all levels of education and training need to be made more attractive and efficient;

Promoting equity, social cohesion and active citizenship – education and training should enable all citizens to acquire and develop skills and competencies needed for their employability and foster further learning, active citizenship and intercultural dialogue. Educational disadvantage should be addressed through high quality inclusive and early education;

Enhancing creativity and innovation, including entrepreneurship, at all levels of education and training – the acquisition of transversal competences by all citizens should be promoted and the functioning of the knowledge triangle (education-research-innovation) should be ensured.

Partnerships between enterprises and educational institutions as well as broader learning communities with civil society and other stakeholders should be promoted.

Compile a clear plan for implementation

Link budgets to convincing explanations

Ascertain tangible outcomes and qualitative & quantitative indicators for activities

Use National Agency

Quality & relevant partnership

Appropriate distribution of tasks

Clear plan for communication

Develop a quality & relevant partnership

Draft an appropriate distribution of tasks

Devise a clear plan for communication

Allow plenty of time!

Define clear target groups

Measures for evaluation

Explain long term impact of the results of the project

Include Value of EfVET for impact across Europe

Make sure you answer the questions!

Engage one person to write so it flows…….but input from all partners

Compose longer sections in Word first so that you do not exceed the word count on the form

Write for the evaluator, who may not know much about the

Links with financial – value for money

Start the financial calculations in Excel

Clear rows for each partner, staff type & intellectual output

Ensure costs are eligible – see guidelines

Remember management, administration, financial management & dissemination in monthly allowance

Set up a good system at the start

Work with partners to create a convincing application

Keep checking award criteria!


Different levels

Involve companies

Be realistic and practical; do not promise what you cannot do

Allow enough time to plan and write

Clear development objectives

Use National Agency

Information clarity: timetables, budgets

Clarity also from EU and National Agency

KA2 – internal timetable gives good structure for writer and partners

KA1 – internal strategic European plan

Honest in weaknesses of project – can be a good development point (can also help with measuring impact)

Topic precise and in line with commission requirements

Partnership different actors connected with the topic

Find the best writer in the partnership

Each partner has a financial controller allocated

Make schedule and tick all boxes to cover all participants

Add new partners

KA1 – formalised validation of work placement based upon learning outcomes

KA2 – ensure relevance to annual EU VET priorities

Good project manager should be identified

Look hard at the Intellectual Outputs required in KA2 proposed partnerships

Include expert on quality

Start dissemination as early as possible; use internal departments as well as local/regional outlets.

Always invite a colleague who has had no involvement in the drafting of the application, to read the application form to ascertain that the project description is completely clear. (Remember that the evaluator will also come to the project description without previous knowledge of the project proposal.

Geoff Scaplehorn

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