This document and the accompanying sample tracer study are designed for those involved in VET either at a system or institutional level. It is intended to support those who are seeking to improve their understanding of the efficacy of training courses by conducting tracer studies.

The best way to improve VET systems and support the objectives they contribute to is to understand the effectiveness of current training and the specific gaps, challenges and opportunities, and then, take action based on this evidence. Too often, however, this evidential base is inconsistent and inadequate.

Where resources are limited and systems have high degrees of informality, information on the effectiveness of training – including on what happens with graduates after the training – is often not available. A comprehensive tracking of learners is needed to see if the training led to the envisaged success. Therefore, it presents a need for more agile tools to accurately provide an evidential base upon which value judgements and decisions can be made.

A tracer study is one mechanism that can be used to this effect. It is simply a survey of learners after they have finished their training. Tracer studies can be used to better understand the effectiveness of training, both for employers and learners. This guide and the accompanying template will assist those policy makers and training institutions seeking to use tracer studies as an effective evidence-gathering mechanism, and ultimately help to improve their decision making.

This document and the accompanying sample tracer study are within the framework of the EU-funded VET Toolbox programme.

Find the tool below.

External links