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Validation of non-formal and informal learning
(Validation des acquis de l'expérience - VAE)

Validation of non-formal and informal learning (VAE) is a process which enables professional and non-professional experience to be recognised  with a view to obtaining all or part of a:


What is it about?

VAE is an additional means of access to diplomas by recognising knowledge acquired by formal, non-formal and informal learning. It brings out the best in individuals and facilitates lifelong learning.

VAE is for anyone, regardless of age, level of study or professional status.

The only prerequisite is a minimum of 3 years or 5000 hours (continuous or not) of paid, unpaid or voluntary work which is directly related to the requested certification.


Certificates, diplomas and qualifications obtained through VAE are equivalent to certificates, diplomas and qualifications obtained through other testing methods and give the same entitlements.

Process to follow

The applicant must put together a portfolio and submit it to a Validation Committee or a qualified panel. The portfolio should provide details of the knowledge, competencies and skills which are directly related to the certificate in question, and provide concrete examples of tasks carried out.

The Committee or panel issues a decision based on the portfolio provided by the applicant, following an interview with the latter and, where required, a placement into a professional situation (whether real-life or simulated) if such a process is required by the authority which issues the certification.

The decision of the Validation Committee or panel can lead to the following scenarios for the applicant:

  • No validation,
  • Partial validation,
  • Full validation.

In the event of partial validation, the applicant has three years to gain the missing skills through training or additional experience.

Further information on the Validation of non-formal and informal learning process according to the diploma in question:


Last update - 03.05.2021
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