In this article we analyse practices of various forms of learning in different countries and their key roles for individuals regarding their potential on the labour market, in further education or any other interests of individuals and society. In addition, we analyse validation processes for non-formal and informal learning, as well as quality assurance practices in those countries.

Based on our analysis, we discuss the challenges of the inclusion of ‘non-formal education qualifications’ into national qualifications frameworks, emphasising the quality assurance principles for qualifications that are part of national qualification frameworks, and propose the theoretical base for inclusion of such qualifications into national qualifications frameworks. Some of the key quality assurance challenges discussed are related to the design of qualifications, the application of learning outcomes, valid and reliable assessment according to the agreed and transparent learning outcomes-based standards, and the process of certifications of those ‘non-formal education qualifications’.