Vocational Education and Training (VET) and Adult Learning



Vocational Education and Training (VET) ensures skills development in a wide range of occupational fields, through school-based and work-based learning. It plays a key role in ensuring lower school dropout rates and facilitates the school-to-work transition. In a changing world of work, well-designed VET systems can play a crucial role in developing the right skills for the labour market, not only for youth but also for adults in need of up-skilling or re-skilling. The OECD VET and Adult Learning Team helps countries understand the main strengths and weakness of their VET systems, and identifies opportunities and challenges for future-ready VET systems that are resilient, flexible and inclusive.   

People working with an abstract background with gears. © Viktoria Kurpas/ ‌‌

What's new

Join the webinar during the OECD Youth Week - Developing skills at work: Apprenticeship as an attractive pathway for youth. 24 September 2021, 14:00-15:30 (CEST). Register here. Draft agenda.


Cedefop/OECD symposium on apprenticeships for greener economies and societies


Cedefop/OECD symposium "Apprenticeships for Greener Economies and Societies".

21-22 October 2021(virtual event). 

Register here.

Visit the symposium web page for additional information.



VET country reviews

The way VET is organised and delivered, and its importance in the overall education system, varies substantially between countries. Country-specific VET reviews provide in-depth assessments of the strengths and weakness of countries’VET systems and tailored advice on a wide range of aspects of VET policies. Such reviews have been conducted in over 30 countries, see here for an overview.

Work-based learning and apprenticeships

VET systems differ strongly in how work-based learning is organised. In some programmes, including apprenticeships, VET students spend a large share of their time in the workplace (see Work-based learning and apprenticeships). But even in programmes that are organised pre-dominantly at schools, different types of work-based learning opportunities can be available for students (see Work-based learning in school-based VET). 

Inclusive VET and adult learning

VET provides opportunties for skills development to a diverse group of learners. Inclusive VET systems have potential to facilitate the integration of migrants (see Unlocking the potential of migrants through VET). Adults can also participate in VET programmes to up-skill and re-skill through their working lives (see Adult learning and basic skills).


Key reports

Unlocking the potential of migrants: cross-country analysis cover  ‌Seven Questions about Apprenticeships cover  ‌Skills beyond School Synthesis Report publication cover ‌‌Learning for Jobs publication cover


Further reading

Publications, working papers, blogs and videos



Team leader: 

Follow us on Twitter @OECD_Social








Related Documents