Key Features of WBL in Bosnia and Herzegovina
The Framework Law on Vocational Education and Training in Bosnia and Herzegovina stresses the significance of harmonization of education with the market needs. In spite of this, access to WBL and practical training of students in companies is not yet harmonized throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina. In accordance with the theoretic basis, one can conclude that elements of WBL in the initial VET are present in the following forms:
- Learning about work– learning about the real world realized through visits to companies.
- Gaining experience– applying knowledge and skills gained in school in real working environment: ferial practice/ practical continuity.
- Work–based learning-gaining knowledge and skills on the job, alternate learning in school and company.
Apprenticeship as a specific form of alternate learning in school and commerce (apprentice employed in the company) is not represented in its full form in initial VET in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Practical lessons are being carried out in several ways in Bosnia and Herzegovina – in some places mostly in school workshops, for some occupations only in the companies, and for the majority of occupations a combination (in school and in the company). Schools which have their own workshops partly have practical lessons in their workshops (usually in lower grades) and subsequently in the higher grades, they send their students for practical lessons to companies. The number of classes which takes place in companies varies from school to school and makes 20 % of the practical lessons in total in general. Examples of exceptional cooperation between schools and companies with regards to practical lessons and ferial practice is still rare.
In Bosnia and Herzegovina, according to law, VET schools sign contracts with companies for organizing practical lessons. The documentation is made in the schools, noting that the content and form has not often been uniform.