The European quality benchmark for online, open and flexible education




A broad term covering both academic and subject requirements and the processes for organising and managing the teaching and learning.



Advice and commentary given by a teacher on examinations, coursework, or classroom activity. Can be oral or written and helps learners to understand their progress.



Provision of study in such a way as to allow students to choose their own time, pace and place of learning. It also describes how programmes of study may allow students to choose courses or topics of particular interest to them.


Formative assessment

Assessment aimed primarily at determining a person's strengths and weaknesses with the objective of improving them. Formative assessment demands feedback to the student in some form and may, but will not always, contribute to summative assessment.


General educational objectives

Educational objectives of a programme of study which are not subject- or field-specific but of a more general nature and which usually characterise the level of study involved. At degree level, for example, these will include developing powers of independent judgement and critical reflection.



Methods of teaching and learning that include techniques in which learners communicate with each other and with the tutor. Interaction may be synchronous (e.g. Telephone) or asynchronous (e.g. E-mail). It is also used to refer to the way in which learning materials themselves are structured to require the active participation of learners in moving from one stage to another.


Key skills

Those essential skills which people need in order to be effective members of a modern society and a flexible, adaptable and competitive workforce. Examples of key skills are communication and group working, literacy, numeracy, use of information technology and knowing how to learn.


Learning outcomes

Statements indicating what a learner should have acquired in respect of both knowledge and skills at the end of a given course or programme.



A person who acts as an adviser to a learner. The term is especially used in work-place learning environments to cover professional advice. The activity is called mentoring.



A separate and coherent block of learning, usually over a term or semester. Part of a modular programme of studies where the programme is divided into a range of similar sized segments.



The theory and process of teaching.



Using the ideas or writings of another as if they were one's own, (i.e. Without acknowledging the true author).



A sequenced set of courses or modules representing a student’s total study requirement and usually leading to an award on successful completion.



A broad term to include students, teachers, educational managers, employers, etc, any of whom will have a legitimate interest in aspects of the learning provision.


Summative assessment

Assessment generally taking place at the end of a course or programme and leading to the attribution of a grade or a mark to the student. The results of summative assessment determine whether a student progresses to the next stage of the programme or, on completion, gains an award.



A teacher who provides instruction, academic advice or counsel to one or more students.


Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)

A set of computerised systems or tools which allow controlled access by students to course materials and the facilities needed to support learning. Typically, a VLE is accessed via the web and will contain tools for course/programme registration; content management including access to external resources; student-student and student-tutor discussion; tracking student activity; secure submission of assignments; assessment; access to course/programme information; access to student support systems; etc.


Virtual Mobility

The use of information and communications technology as an alternative to physical mobility.


Vocational courses

Courses of study related to professional practice and labour market needs.