International consultant to develop an accreditation model for public and private Vocational Education and Training providers in Albania

Location : Home based with two missions with ten days in total to Tirana, ALBANIA
Application Deadline :28-Sep-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Expected Duration of Assignment :50 working days during the period 10th of November 2019 – 31st March 2020


Albania is a middle-income country that over the past two and half decades has made a significant stride in establishing a consolidated market economy. Due to strong growth performance (annual growth rate at 6%), Albania grew from the poorest nation in Europe in the early 1990s to the status of middle-income country in 2008. Despite the growth trend, the structure of the country’s economy is dominated by small enterprises (95%), which even if substantially contributing in terms of both economic growth and employment have limited potential for job creation. With a narrow export and production base, and limited innovation capacities, the competitiveness of Albania’s economy is weak. The Albanian Government has committed to transforming the economy from an import-dependent, consumption-based, and informal economy, to one that is based on sustainable job-creation and increased productivity. As such, it has largely recognized the need to systematically address employment by re-orienting the vocational education and training system towards labour market needs and modernizing and extending the outreach of employment services.

The Skills Development for Employment (SD4E) programme of UNDP Albania will continue to support the Government of Albania in the national Vocational Education and Training (VET) and Employment reform through a comprehensive approach of institutional capacity building on a macro/policy level, enabling key actors (MFE, NES/NAES and NAVETQ) to deliver coordinated and demand-driven services. Responding to national priorities and the objectives of the National Employment and Skills Strategy, this Swiss funded intervention has the ambition to make a systemic contribution where the Albanian VET system and Employment Service supply the labour market with a skilled workforce that contributes to sustainable and inclusive economic development of the country.

To achieve the programme purpose and finally the programme goal, the programme focuses in 3 strategic fields that will aim to improve the governance and quality of service provision in VET and employment promotion in Albania:

  1. Outcome 1: The institutional capacity of key actors in VET and Employment (Ministry, NAVETQ, NAES) is strengthened
  2. Outcome 2: The employment service portfolio is based on a balanced demand-and supply-side oriented approach
  3. Outcome 3: A standardized Quality Assurance (QA) framework is in place that improves the image of VET and fosters linkages between school and world of work.

Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of the assignment

Quality assurance can play a major role in modernizing Vocational Education and Training (VET) system and improving its performance and attractiveness, achieving better value for money. VET system needs to increase its responsiveness to the changing demands of the labour market and improve its outcome effectiveness in order to improve the match between education and training demand and supply. Following the recommendation of the European Parliament and the Council of Europe on the establishment of an European Quality Assurance Reference Framework for VET, “quality assurance framework should give strong emphasis to monitoring and improving quality by combining internal and external evaluation”[1]. This includes processes of quality assurance, i.e. licensing, self-assessment (internal evaluation), accreditation and inspection (external evaluation).

The Law on Vocational Education and Training and the Law on the Albanian Qualifications Framework create the basis for developing an accreditation model for the Albanian VET system. In this legislative framework, accreditation is an external quality evaluation process that determines if a provider (higher education and VET provider) as well as programs/vocational qualifications meet the standards defined by the respective laws[2]. The accreditation process presumes the existence of an internal quality assurance system, such as the self-assessment.

In its previous phase, the Skills Development for Employment Programme of UNDP implemented several preparatory actions that resulted in the “Guideline on Self-Assessment of VET providers”. Following a Minister’s instruction that adopted the Guideline and stipulated the steps of the self-assessment process, the implementation started in 2018 and the first round of self-assessment of all public VET providers will conclude in May 2019 with each institution delivering a self-assessment report on all five quality areas. Based on this, the National Agency for Vocational Education, Training and Qualifications (NAVETQ) will design the accreditation model for VET providers.

UNDP Albania will assist NAVETQ to develop the model, including standards/criteria and guidelines for the accreditation of vocational education and training providers. The assignment will aim at developing a model of accreditation, including type (institutional and/or programme accreditation), scope, modalities and procedures, based on EU recommendations, in line with the general quality assurance framework of VET and the AQF and other key characteristics of the education and training environment in the country.

The results of this assignment will be integrated in the respective regulation on accreditation standards/criteria and procedures, as well as in the working procedures of the responsible unit at NAVETQ and of public and private VET providers in Albania.

Under the overall guidance of the Programme Specialist, and in collaboration with  the SD4E Programme Coordinator and the team, the international consultant will perform the following tasks:

1. Outline of the work plan, including the methodology, instruments for data collection and analysis;

2. Review of the current quality assurance arrangements compared to quality assurance systems of at least two EU countries and one or two countries of South Eastern Europe with reference to:

  • The European Quality Assurance Framework for VET;
  • National legislative framework that stipulates arrangements for quality assurance education, higher education, VET and the AQF;
  • Findings / recommendations from reviews carried out by ETF (Torino Process, VET teachers’ survey etc.);
  • Results from the comprehensive VET review (conducted by UNDP);

3. Provide at least two proposals for the accreditation model of VET providers (public and private) and VET programs vocational qualifications in Albania;

4. Upon endorsement by the national institutions, elaborate the accreditation model to be established and develop detailed standards, criteria and accreditation procedures;

5. Develop guidelines and tools for the implementation of the accreditation;

6. Develop a capacity building plan for NAVETQ and the VET providers for the implementation of the accreditation process.


  • An outline of the working methodology, work plan and instruments for data collection and analysis
  • Review of existing arrangements for quality assurance in the Albanian VET in comparison to the quality assurance framework applied in two EU countries (EQAVET members) and up to two South Eastern European (SEE) countries
  • Proposal(s) for the accreditation model in the Albanian Vocational Education and Training, including public and private providers
  • Detailed accreditation procedures, standards/criteria for the accreditation of VET providers/programmes
  • Guidelines/instruments for the implementation of the accreditation of VET providers (public and private)
  • Capacity building plan for NAVETQ and providers for the purposes of carrying accreditation of VET providers/Programmes



Number of working days

The contractor is expected to deliver a detailed plan within two weeks of the contracting and discussions with UNDP; Agree on the specific objectives and on the methodology to be used

Within  two weeks from the signature of the contract


2 w/d

Review of QA arrangements for VET in Albania, at least 2 EU countries and one country in SEE with a special focus on accreditation processes and procedures


5 w/d

Conduct a 1st field mission to gather information from the Ministry, NAVETQ and public/private VET providers to review the current and the proposed arrangements for Quality Assurance in the Albanian VET system and organize a workshop with NAVETQ and other relevant stakeholders to agree on the core elements of the quality assurance and accreditation model in Albania.


5 w/d

Based on the review and the workshop discussions, prepare a report on the functions to be covered by each institution (Ministry, NAVETQ, National Agency for Employment and Skills, and other) in the quality assurance framework in Albania, and the key elements of the accreditation model


3 w/d

Design and propose a coherent model, including standards and criteria, for the accreditation of public and private VET providers in Albania



5 w/d

Conduct the 2nd field visit in Tirana, Albania to discuss and agree on the accreditation model, as well as on the general standards/criteria for the accreditation.


5 w/d

Elaborate standards and criteria for the accreditation of VET providers and develop guidelines and instruments for the implementation of the accreditation procedures and processes


15 w/d

Design a capacity building plan for NAVETQ and VET providers to prepare for the roll-out of the accreditation and design and deliver a training package for accreditation teams


10 w/d

Total no of days                                                                                                       50 w/d

[1] Official Journal of the European Union:  RECOMMENDATION OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 18 June 2009 on the establishment of a European Quality Assurance Reference Framework for Vocational Education and Training, C155/2, § (11).

[2] Law No. 15/2017 and Law No. 23/2018

[3] The final  dates will be agreed mutually


Core Competencies:

  • Demonstrating/safeguarding ethics and integrity;
  • Demonstrate corporate knowledge and sound judgement;
  • Self-development, initiative-taking;
  • Act as a team player and facilitate team work;
  • Facilitating and encouraging open communication in the team, communicating effectively;
  • Creating synergies through self-control;
  • Managing conflict;
  • Learning and sharing knowledge and encourage the learning of others;
  • Informed and transparent decision-making.

Functional Competencies:

  • Knowledge and expertise in VET polies and quality assurance frameworks;
  • Strong communication skills (written, spoken, composing, presentation);
  • Substantive knowledge of business administration and management;
  • Political and cultural sensitivity and commitment to UNDP’s development objectives in the country.

Required Skills and Experience

Academic Qualifications

  • Post-graduate degree in education, economics or other relevant field is required;

Work Experience

  • Minimum 15 years of professional experience in EU education and training and youth policies
  • Significant experience in EU countries and/or EU accession countries in designing responsive VET quality assurance frameworks with a focus on accreditation of education and training providers;
  • Knowledge of the Albanian VET system / regional context would be highly desirable


  • Full working knowledge of English is essential.


Evaluation Procedure

UNDP applies a fair and transparent selection process that would consider both the technical qualification of Individual Consultants as well as their financial proposals. The contract will be awarded to the candidate whose offer:

  • Is deemed technically responsive / compliant / acceptable (only technically responsive applications / candidates will be considered for the financial evaluation)
  • And has obtained the highest combined technical and financial scores.

Technical Criteria - 70% of total evaluation – max points: 70

Criteria A: Post-graduate degree in education, economics or other relevant field – max 10 points

Criteria B:  Minimum 15 years of professional experience in EU education, training and youth policies – max 20 points

Criteria C: Possess significant experience in supporting EU countries and/or EU accession countries to design responsive VET quality assurance frameworks with a focus on accreditation of education and training providers – max 10 points

Criteria D:  Full working knowledge of English is essential - max 10 points

Criteria E: Technical proposal – max 20 points

Financial Criteria - 30% of total evaluation – max 30 points


Application Procedure

The application should contain:

  • Cover letter explaining why you are the most suitable candidate for the advertised position. Please paste the letter into the "Resume and Motivation" section of the electronic application.
  • Letter to UNDP Confirming Interest and Availability-please fill in the attached form...
  • Latest personal CV, including past experience from similar projects or completed and signed UN Personal History Form (P11) for Service Contracts (SC) and Individual Contracts (IC) – Blank form Download here.
  • Financial Proposal - specifying a total lump sum amount in USD for completion of the tasks specified in this announcement. The financial proposal should indicate an all-inclusive fixed total contract price and all other travel related costs (such as flight ticket, per diem, etc), supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template attached to the Letter of Confirmation of Interest template.  If an applicant is employed by an organization/company/institution, and he/she expects his/her employer to charge a management fee in the process of releasing him/her to UNDP under Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA), the applicant must indicate at this point, and ensure that all such costs are duly incorporated in the financial proposal submitted to UNDP. 
  • Copy of Diplomas and copy of Passport.

How to Submit the Application:

To submit your application online, please follow the steps below:

  • Merge your CV or P11, Financial Proposal Letter to UNDP Confirming Interest and Availability and cover letter into a single file. The system does not allow for more than one attachment to be uploaded;
  • Click on the Job Title (job vacancy announcement);
  • Click “Apply Now” button, fill in necessary information on the first page, and then click “Submit Application;”
  • Upload your application/single file as indicated above with the merged documents (underlined above);
  • You will receive an automatic response to your email confirming receipt of your application by the system.

Due to a large number of applications we receive, we are able to inform only the successful candidates about the outcome or status of the selection process

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.

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