The Australian Government Department of Education has a network of international offices globally, including in Brazil.
In Brazil, the primary role of the Department involves working on Governmental Affairs, institutional partnerships and bilateral partnerships. Since 2015 the Department has had a Memorandum of Understanding and has maintained a close working relationship with the Ministry of Education in Brazil.
The Initial Challenge
Brazil has used the Australian educational model (from high school to VET to higher education) as a benchmark for its own policy changes. In the VET sector, 3 key goals have been established.
Internationalization of education
The aim is to benchmark global education standards with countries such as the US, Germany, Spain, Portugal and Australia.
Inclusion of flexible learning pathways
The second challenge is focussed on tertiary education with the inclusion of flexible pathways, for the VET sector and academic training.
Brazil has recently launched a national program named Verticaliza which aims to address the lack of a national agreed competency. The aim of this program is to verticalize training itineraries – allowing VET providers to shape their training courses and establish links across levels and sectors.
This has allowed institutions to design flexible itineraries and gain a better understanding of packages, as well as establishing an understanding of how to use credits and certificates in relation to RPL, work experience, and formal and informal learning environments.
Standardise Competency & RPL
The 3rd goal involves the Federal Government of Brazil implementing best practice strategies that have been executed by benchmark countries. One of the main changes within the legislation has been to authorise institutes to standardise the competency and recognition of prior learning - based on industrial trends, gaps and future prospective.
Projects developed have so far been launched for 11 institutions. The work will be replicated for another 5 groups of 11 institutions. The aim is to have at least 60 VET providers in Brazil with the capability to implement innovative pedagogical projects in their institutions from 2023/24.
Challenges along the way
The initial challenge was to understand the scope of changes the Ministry of Education in Brazil wanted to implement, and how Australian benchmarks could respond/ add value to this process.
Participants of the program received course content (developed by eWorks) in English. The Department of Education in Brazil developed a student guidebook in Portuguese for students’ to consult and use as a reference.
Each institution who took part in the national training strategy appointed 4 participants for the initiative, which included 2 x course coordinators and 2 x experts in a specific field.
When the training came to completion, the participants were required to submit their strategies to their VET providers and the Ministry of Education. The plan was to pilot each program and assess whether it meets certain Australian educational benchmarks. The remaining 5 groups are to submit their strategies in 2023.
The Ministry of Education will then review, approve, and/or provide feedback on how this initiative will shape the Brazilian legislation and fit within the legal scheme.
The pilot is expected to take 2 years to implement (between 2023 and 2024). The program will assist post-secondary training by connecting students to a technological diploma. This is the equivalent of a Certificate in Australia connecting to a VET Diploma.
Students in the program will also benefit from recognition of prior learning - taking their work experience into consideration also.
The eWorks team were fully responsive to the requirements - collaborating with the Department to ensure all was understood in terms of design and the structure of contents.
Benefits of Implementing Bespoke Content for the Department of Education Brazil
Unlike an off-the-shelf solution, eWorks was able to provide specialised high-quality content that is highly relevant to users.
The interactive course content had a positive impact on the learners who found the content highly engaging.
The bespoke content developed by eWorks has been extremely cost effective for the Department of Education, Brazil.
Tried and Tested
The deliverables that eWorks presented for the Vertializa program highlighted the strengths of the Australian educational system.
“eWorks were referred to us and we selected them based on their expertise in content creation. The eWorks team come from a variety of backgrounds with vast experience that enables them to offer creative concepts and ideas. The team acted very professionally, and our stakeholders were more than satisfied with how the projects were managed. We were very impressed with the standard of content delivered by eWorks, and we deem them superior to others we have worked with. We absolutely recommend eWorks to others. From the beginning, their team of experts were open to new ideas, came up with creative solutions, and delivered projects on time while meeting our expectations. They held regular meetings and their strong communication helped us to develop a powerful partnership. ”