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The levels of qualifications in the NQF

Here you can find descriptions of the levels in the qualification framework.

The Norwegian qualifications framework (NQF) has seven levels. All levels are defined as a qualification written as learning outcomes in the categories of knowledge, skills and general competences.

Its core is the seven reference levels of qualifications, from those obtained at the end of lower secondary education, (level 2) to the highest (level 8, ph.d. or equivalent). The three highest levels correspond to higher education levels as also defined within the European Higher Education Area. Norway has non qualifications at level 1.

Levels and learning outcome descriptors

The NQF levels are formulated on the basis of what a person know, can do and is capable of doing as a result of a learning process. The outcomes of the completed learning process are described in the categories “knowledge”, “skills” and “general competences”.

The categories describing learning outcomes include:

Knowledge: Understanding of theories, facts, principles, procedures in subject areas and/or occupations.

Skills: Ability to utilise knowledge to solve problems or tasks (cognitive, practical, creative and communication skills).

General competence: Ability to utilise knowledge and skills in an independent manner in different situations.

Level 1 is not part of the NQF, and is therefore not included in this overview.
 

Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • has a basic knowledge of important facts and concepts in and across subjects
  • has knowledge of fundamental political, social, cultural and environmental conditions
  • has a basic knowledge about the use of sources, about how information can be obtained, documented, assessed and applied
  • has a basic understanding of learning how to learn
  • is familiar with different educational choices and occupations

The candidate…

  • can express him/herself verbally and in writing, read, is numerate and can use digital tools in the school work context
  • can present topics in Norwegian/Sami and at least one foreign language
  • can use experience, creativity and exploratory work methods to acquire new knowledge
  • can use practical-aesthetical work methods in several subject areas
  • can reflect on his/her own participation in different media

The candidate…

  • can make use of his/her knowledge and experience to participate in a democratic and inclusive society
  • can cooperate with others in both the work/school and social context
  • can discuss and assess others and his/her own school work under supervision
  • can make independent choices, state the reasons for them and act on the basis of them
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Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • has knowledge of  important facts and concepts in his/her own subject/subject area
  • has knowledge of  work methods, procedures and tools in one or more limited subjects/subject areas
  • is aware of relevant regulations and quality requirements
  • has an understanding of his/her own educational and work opportunities 

The candidate…

  • can communicate and express him/herself in his/her own subject/subject area
  • can use relevant technology to solve subject-specific tasks
  • can receive and follow instructions and carry out specific tasks within the subject area
  • can be creative when carrying out tasks
  • can search for and use information from different sources to further his/her development in relation to future work and/or education

The candidate…

  • can cooperate with others in the performance of work and utilise relevant skills and knowledge
  • can initiate and carry out limited tasks
  • can seek and accept guidance in relation to concrete tasks and own vocational development
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Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • has knowledge of  relevant concepts, models and principles in the subject area
  • has knowledge of, and has an overview of materials, equipment and work methods, and can give reasons for his/her choices
  • has the experience-based knowledge required to practise in the vocational field
  • has insight into the importance and historical development of the trade/occupation in a societal perspective
  • has knowledge of  relevant regulations, standards, agreements and quality requirements
  • has knowledge of  different learning strategies and can utilise them in his/her own learning
  • has an understanding of his/her own educational and work opportunities

The candidate…

  • can systematise, present and report on planned and completed work
  • can carry out calculations and assess consequences
  • can solve vocational challenges in a critical and creative manner, alone or in cooperation with others
  • can use relevant concepts, principles, materials and equipment in his/her work
  • can communicate in at least one foreign language
  • can assess and choose work methods for solving subject-specific tasks
  • can be creative when planning and performing work
  • can carry out work in accordance with the applicable regulations, standards, agreements and quality requirements
  • can analyse and assess different types of sources of relevance to his/her own work

The candidate…

  • can use his/her own vocational competence in new and complex contexts
  • can work independently and take responsibility for ensuring that work is carried out with the required craftsmanship and in accordance with legislation, regulations and established ethical standards in the trade/field in question
  • can cooperate and communicate with colleagues, customers and/or users when carrying out his/her work
  • can guide others in their work
  • can document and assess others’ work and own work in connection with planning, organising, work performance and results
  • can reflect on his/her own vocational competence as the basis for future choices
  • can initiate tasks and activities that promote his/her own learning and development
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Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • has knowledge of  important facts, concepts, theories, principles and methods in different subjects
  • has the experience-based knowledge required to practise different subjects
  • has insight into how academic issues relate to society as a whole
  • has knowledge of  different learning strategies and can apply them in his/her own learning
  • has an understanding of his/her own educational and work opportunities

The candidate…

  • can express him/herself verbally and in writing in different academic contexts
  • can read, is numerate and can use digital tools and media to solve academic challenges in a critical and creative manner, alone or in cooperation with others
  • can use academic terminology in communication and cooperation
  • can communicate in at least two foreign languages
  • can apply relevant methods, principles and strategies to solve subject-specific tasks
  • can explore, analyse, formulate and discuss different issues
  • can analyse and assess different types of sources

The candidate…

  • can use his/her own academic competence in new and complex contexts
  • can plan and organise work, independently and in cooperation with others
  • can use his/her academic knowledge and skills to develop knowledge together with others
  • can guide others to a certain extent in academic situations
  • can assess the quality of and take responsibility for the results of his/her own and joint work 
  • can reflect on his/her own academic competence as the basis for future choices
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Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • has knowledge of  concepts, processes and tools that are used in a specialised field of work
  • has insight into relevant regulations, standards, agreements and quality requirements
  • has a knowledge of the industry and is familiar with the field of work
  • can update his/her vocational knowledge
  • understands the importance of his/her own trade/discipline in a societal and value-creation perspective

The candidate…

  • can apply vocational knowledge to practical and theoretical problems
  • masters relevant vocational tools, materials, techniques and styles
  • can find information and material that is relevant to a vocational problem
  • can study a situation and identify subject-related issues and what measures need to be implemented

The candidate…

  • understands the ethical principles that apply in the trade/ field of work
  • has developed an ethical attitude in relation to the practising of his/her discipline
  • can carry out work based on the needs of selected target groups
  • can build relations with his/her peers, also across discipline boundaries, and with external target groups
  • can develop work methods, products and/or services of relevance to practising the discipline
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Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • has knowledge of  concepts, theories, models processes and tools that are used in a specialised field of work
  • can assess his/her own work in relation to the applicable norms and requirements
  • is familiar with the history, traditions, distinctive nature and place in society of the trade/discipline
  • has insight into his/her own opportunities for development

The candidate…

  • can explain his/her vocational choices
  • can reflect over his/her own vocational practice and adjust it under supervision
  • can find and refer to information and vocational material and assess its relevance to a vocational issue

The candidate…

  • can plan and carry out vocational tasks and projects alone or as part of a group and in accordance with ethical requirements and principles
  • can exchange points of view with others with a background in the trade/discipline and participate in discussions about the development of good practice
  • can contribute to organisational development
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A candidate who has completed his or her qualification should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:

Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • has knowledge of  important topics, theories, problems, processes, tools and methods in the subject area
  • is familiar with research and development work in the field
  • can update his/her knowledge in the subject area
  • is familiar with the subject area’s history, traditions, distinctive nature and place in society

The candidate…

  • can apply academic knowledge to practical and theoretical problems and explain his/her choices
  • can reflect on his/her own academic practice and adjust it under supervision
  • can find, assess and refer to information and academic material and relate it to an issue
  • masters relevant academic tools, techniques and styles

The candidate…

  • has insight into relevant ethical issues relating to the field/ profession
  • can plan and carry out tasks and projects alone or as part of a group and in accordance with ethical requirements and principles
  • can present important academic material such as theories, problems and solutions, both in writing and orally, as well as using other relevant forms of communication
  • can exchange opinions with others with a background in the field and participate in discussions concerning the development of good practice
  • is familiar with new ideas and innovation processes
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A candidate who has completed his or her qualification should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:

Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • has broad knowledge of important topics, theories, issues, processes, tools and methods within the academic field
  • is familiar with research and development work in the field
  • can update his/her knowledge in the field
  • has knowledge of the history, traditions, distinctive character and place in society of the academic field

The candidate…

  • can apply academic knowledge and relevant results of research and development work to practical and theoretical problems and make well-founded choices
  • can reflect upon his/her own academic practice and adjust it under supervision
  • can find, evaluate and refer to information and scholarly subject matter and present it in a manner that sheds light on the problem
  • masters relevant scholarly tools, techniques and forms of communication

The candidate…

  • has insight into relevant academic and professional ethical issues
  • can plan and carry out varied assignments and projects over time, alone or as part of a group, and in accordance with ethical requirements and principles
  • can communicate important academic subject matters such astheories, problems and solutions, both in writing and orally, as well as through other relevant forms of communication
  • can exchange opinions and experiences with others with a background in the field, thereby contributing to the development of good practice
  • is familiar with new thinking and innovation processes
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A candidate who has completed his or her qualification should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:

Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • has advanced knowledge  within the academic field and specialized insight in a limited area
  • has thorough knowledge of the scholarly or artistic theories and methods in the field
  • can apply knowledge to new areas within the academic field
  • can analyze academic problems on the basis of the history, traditions, distinctive character and place in society of the academic field

The candidate…

  • can analyze and deal critically with various sources of information and use them to structure and formulate scholarly arguments
  • can analyze existing theories, methods and interpretations in the field and work independently on practical and theoretical problems
  • can use relevant methods for research and scholarly and /or artistic development work in an independent manner
  • can carry out an independent, limited research or development project under supervision and in accordance with applicable norms for research ethics

The candidate…

  • can analyze relevant academic, professional and research ethical problems
  • can apply his/her knowledge and skills in new areas in order to carry out advanced assignments and projects
  • can communicate extensive independent work and masters language and terminology of the academic field
  • can communicate about academic issues, analyses and conclusions in the field, both with specialists and the general public
  • can contribute to new thinking and innovation processes
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A candidate who has completed his or her qualification should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:

Knowledge Skills General competence

The candidate…

  • is in the forefront of knowledge within his/her academic field and masters the field´s philosophy of science and/or artistic issues and methods
  • can evaluate the expediency and application of different methods and processes in research and scholarly and/or artistic development projects
  • can contribute to the development of new knowledge, new theories, methods, interpretations and forms of documentation in the field

The candidate…

  • can formulate problems, plan and carry out research and scholarly and/or artistic development work
  • can carry out research and scholarly and/or artistic research work of a high international standard
  • can handle complex academic issues and challenge established knowledge and practice in the field

The candidate…

  • can identify new relevant ethical issues and carry out his/her research with scholarly integrity
  • can manage complex interdisciplinary assignments and projects
  • can communicate research and development work through recognized Norwegian and international channels
  • can participate in debates in the field in international forums
  • can assess the need for, initiate and practice innovation
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