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Integrate ‘21st century personal and societal skills’ in teaching

19 May 2022 09:30 - 11:00

Does your course/educational program train students in ‘21st Century personal and societal skills’? Are you interested in integrating these important competencies into specific elements that can be operationalized and scaffolded in the curriculum ? Then we invite you to this workshop.

Various strategy and policy documents on university education – at institutional, national, European and global level stress the importance of  personal and societal competences skills, such as critical thinking, civic engagement, problem solving skills, communication skills etc. In literature these competencies/skills are called horizontal, or transversal, or 21st century skills or, soft skills. Various educational approaches aim, amongst others, to train these competences and skills, such as Community Service Learning (CSL), Problem-based or Challenge-based learning. However, despite the importance of these competencies, there are only few qualification frameworks that offer a description or scaffolding of these competencies.

In this workshop the CSL team of the VU invites Kees Kouwenaar (AURORA & VU Expert on AURORA Competencies Framework) to present the LOUIS tool which aims to break down these “21st century personal and societal competences” into specific elements that can be operationalized and scaffolded in the curriculum. LOUIS stands for Learning Outcomes in University for Impact on Society. LOUIS is based on the VALUE approach developed by the Association of  American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U).

In the workshop, we:

  • Interactively discuss the role of “21st century personal and societal competencies” in university education
  • Introduce the LOUIS approach and tool
  • Invite participants to discover the LOUIS tool for themselves and discuss it in small groups
  • Present International Community Service Learning (ICSL) and other samples of courses that have been using LOUIS
  • Invite participants to use the LOUIS tool to articulate the most relevant learning outcomes for their own course modules (both CSL and non-CSL courses)
  • Interactively discuss the findings of participants about the usability of LOUIS.

At the end of the workshop we aim that participants have an informed opinion on whether and how LOUIS can be a tool to strengthen their education.

For questions please contact or sign-up here. 

About Integrate ‘21st century personal and societal skills’ in teaching

Starting date

  • 19 May 2022


  • 09:30 - 11:00


  • VU Campus
  • WN-C541 (Athena Institute)


  • Amsterdam

Organised by

  • Athena Institute, VU Amsterdam & AURORA Universities Alliance


  • English