The European Language Portfolio: Support and Development for Language Learners

The European Language Portfolio project supports European integration and mobility by providing users with a tool which not only allows them to record formal learning (classes and examinations taken in school) but also provides a means of recording other ways in which languages may be learnt or developed. The aim is to provide an overall picture of an individual's abilities in a form which is easily recognisable across Europe, and which is especially relevant for anyone applying to work or study in another country.

A strong element of the Portfolio project is support for lifelong learning, and holders of European Language Portfolios are encouraged to return to them at regular intervals in order to update the record of their skills, thereby encouraging both formal and independent learning. The Portfolio is always the property of its owner, who can use it to record their progress and identify new learning goals. As a result, the Portfolio motivates European citizens to develop partial competence in several languages, as any level of ability may be recorded, thereby supporting plurilingualism and pluriculturalism.

The Portfolio comprises three parts:

  • Passport: this has a reporting function, and is most often used for external purposes; up to six languages can be recorded, including mother tongue
  • Language biography: to record language learning experiences
  • Dossier: contains sample materials supporting the other two parts

The EAQUALS-ALTE Portfolio
To reflect the diversity and comparability of examinations provided by ALTE members, an ALTE version of the European Language Portfolio has been created in association with EAQUALS – the European Association for Quality Language Services.

The EAQUALS-ALTE Portfolio is available in both paper and electronic formats, in English, French, German, Italian, Basque, Spanish, and Romanian, with other languages currently in preparation. It enables takers of ALTE member examinations to record their results, and allows users to accurately compare ALTE examinations through different levels of achievement, and through clear links with the Common European Framework. Click here for more information.