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Erasmus+ is the European Union's programme in the fields of education, training, youth and sport for the period 2021-2027.

The 2021-2027 programme places a strong focus on social inclusion, the green and digital transitions, and promoting young people’s participation in democratic life.

The main aim of Erasmus+ is to provide financial support:

  • for mobility and activities carried out by learners (pupils, students, young people and adult learners),

  • for mobility and cooperation activities among workers in education, training, youth and sport who act as examples to be followed in contact with learners (young people and adults).

Individuals are not allowed to submit a personal Erasmus+ application, except in the case of applications submitted on behalf of a group of young people active in youth work, which are possible. For an institutional procedure, they must associate their organisation to the Erasmus+ project, and it is then the organisation that runs the project and obtains the funding.

01 Key Actions

The Erasmus+ programme focuses on three Key Actions.

Key Action 1 - Learning mobility of individuals

Mobility opportunities in the sectors of school education, vocational education and training, higher education, adult education and youth are priority activities in the Erasmus+ programme.

People of any age whatever their level of training are given the opportunity to take an active part in the labour market and in society and to contribute to social inclusion and the development of a European identity.

The people concerned are:

  • pupils in school education interested in individual or group mobility in another country

  • apprentices, vocational training learners and the recently qualified, for placements in undertakings or professional institutions in Europe and internationally, study periods, or participation in skills competitions

  • undergraduates, PhD students and recent graduates, for study periods or placements in Europe and internationally, and blended intensive programmes1

  • adult learners wishing to take advantage of opportunities for personal development or improve their basic skills through individual or group mobility

  • young people wishing to take part in "youth exchanges" and "youth participation activities"

  • people working in the fields of education, training and youth, for teaching or training missions and staff training activities, and members of the staff of higher education institutions interested in taking part in blended intensive programmes.
    Trainee teachers and social education workers may carry out their work placement in another country.
    Experts may also be invited by organisations active in the education and training sectors (except the higher education sector) in order to further develop the teaching and learning methods implemented by the organisations.

1 Blended intensive programmes combine a shorter physical mobility activity with a virtual element. The physical mobility period must last between 5 and 30 days and must be associated with a virtual element facilitating collaborative online learning based on exchange and teamwork. A blended mobility activity for study purposes must make it possible to obtain at least 3 ECTS credits.

Key Action 2 - Cooperation among organisations and institutions

Partnerships in favour of cooperation meet the need for innovative practices, cooperation and the pooling of experience at the European level. They are open to all types of organisations active in the fields of education, vocational training, social and educational work and other socio-economic sectors.

There are two types of partnership, defined by their aims and the composition of the partnership:

  • cooperation partnerships
    • are aimed at developing initiatives in one or more of the fields of education, training and youth
    • may last between 12 and 36 months
    • must involve at least 3 partners in 3 different countries
    • may receive a European grant of between 100.000 and 400.000 euros per project
  • small-scale partnerships
    • are aimed at developing initiatives in one or more of the fields of education, training, and youth, excluding the higher education sector
    • may last for 6 to 24 months
    • must involve at least two partners in two different countries
    • may receive a European grant of either 30.000 or 60.000 euros
Key Action 3 - Support to policy development and cooperation

Key Action 3 is managed directly by the European Commission.

It supports:

  • the "European Youth Together" action, which targets youth organisations at grass-root level which want to establish cross-border partnerships and link their activities to EU youth policies

  • drawing up new policies

  • European tools to facilitate the quality, transparency and recognition of skills and qualifications

  • dialogue on policies and cooperation with the parties concerned and international organisations

  • measures contributing to high-quality, inclusive implementation of the programme

  • cooperation with other instruments of the European Union (EU) and other EU policies

  • activities providing information and raising awareness.

Key Action 3 also supports Jean Monnet Actions in "teaching and research" in the higher education sector and "teacher training" and "Jean Monnet networks" in the other sectors of education and training. All these actions promote the circulation of knowledge about the European Union's approach to integration.

02 Example

Mobility of individuals for learning purposes (Key Action 1 - Vocational Education and Training)

Nathalie, who is 19 years old, is a student preparing for her technician's diploma at the Lycée Technique Agricole (LTA), an agricultural secondary school. The training syllabus in the "Agriculture" section includes compulsory work experience in another country with a view to supplementing the initial vocational training dispensed at the secondary school.
Nathalie is interested in an initial vocational experience in the equestrian sector, and would like to spend two months at an equestrian centre in Ireland. She contacts the placement office at her school to find out about the organisational aspects of a placement, and the possibilities for obtaining a grant. As part of the LTA's Erasmus+ mobility project, Nathalie will be able to receive an Erasmus+ grant of nearly 3,500 euros to help cover the cost of her placement abroad.

Last update - 09.07.2021
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