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October 7, 2008

As I told you in class, now you can have a European Language Passport and an Electronic Portfolio to register your language experience. I find it extremely interesting and thoroughly recommend you to fill in the passport and download the portfolio.


The Europass Language Passport

What is it?

The Europass Language Passport allows you to describe your language skills, skills that are vital for learning and working in Europe.

The Europass Language Passport was developed by the Council of Europe as part of the European Language Portfolio which consists of three documents: the Language Passport, the Language Biography and the Dossier.

Using the Europass Language Passport

You have three options:

Create your Europass Language Passport now

using online instructions and examples. You will then receive the completed Language Passport electronically (download or e-mail).

Download the Europass Language Passport documents

(blank template, instructions, examples and Europass cover page). You will then use these documents on your computer.

Update your Europass Language Passport (XML or PDF+XML)

If you already have a Europass Language Passport in XML or PDF+XML format, you can upload it and update your data.
Your personal data will be automatically inserted in the system.



What is a European Language Portfolio?

It is a document in which those who are learning or have learned a language – whether at school or outside school – can record and reflect on their language learning and cultural experiences.

The portfolio contains a language passport which its owner regularly updates. A grid is provided where his/her language competences can be described according to common criteria accepted throughout Europe and which can serve as a complement to customary certificates. The document also contains a detailed language biography describing the owner’s experiences in each language and which is designed to guide the learner in planning and assessing progress. Finally, there is a dossier where examples of personal work can be kept to illustrate one’s language competences.

3 Parts of a Portfolio

Aims and functions of a European Language Portfolio

The European Language Portfolio project has two main aims:

a) to motivate learners by acknowledging their efforts to extend and diversify their language skills at all levels;

b) to provide a record of the linguistic and cultural skills they have acquired (to be consulted, for example, when they are moving to a higher learning level or seeking employment at home or abroad).

Points a) and b) refer to the two basic functions of the European Language Portfolio:

a) The pedagogic function

· Enhance the motivation of the learners

to improve their ability to communicative in different languages
to learn additional languages
to seek new intercultural experiences

· Incite and help learners to

reflect their objectives, ways of learning and success in language learning
plan their learning
learn autonomously

· Encourage learners to enhance their plurilingual and intercultural experience, for example through

contacts and visits
use of the media

b) The documentation and reporting function

The European Language Portfolio aims to document its holder’s plurilingual language proficiency and experiences in other languages in a comprehensive, informative, transparent and reliable way. The instruments contained in the ELP help learners to take stock of the levels of competence they have reached in their learning of one or several foreign languages in order to enable them to inform others in a detailed and internationally comparable manner.

There are many occasions to present a Language Portfolio which is up to date, for example a transfer to another school, change to a higher educational sector, the beginning of a language course, a meeting with a career advisor, or an application for a new post. In these cases the ELP is addressed to persons who have a role in decisions which are important for the owner of the Language Portfolio. A learner may also be interested in having such documentation for him-/herself.

All competence is valued, regardless whether gained inside or outside of formal education.

– The European Language Portfolio is the property of the learner.
– It is linked to the Common European Framework of reference for Languages.
– A set of common principles ad guidelines have been agreed for all Portfolios.

As far as I know, there is no validated Spanish model for adults (there are for younger students, though). HOwever, I think is is a very good idea for you to use the electronic portfolio by ALTE (Association of Language Testers in Europe). You have to register to download it.

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