Valutare gli studenti per valutare il sistema: una esperienza della Provincia di Varese - The article presents the main results of a system level evaluation of learning outcomes concerning compulsory Vocational Training (VT) 3-years courses final formal examinations. This evaluation, carried out by the Education and Vocational Training Department of an italian Province (Varese), specifically deals with the use of single student learning standardized outcomes as a crucial component - if properly designed, managed and processed - of the evaluation of a local institutional VT system as a whole. This is quite a challenging task in Italy due both to the territorial differences existing in VT policies and institutional responsibilities and to the weakness of system evaluation culture, models and experiences in VT specifically and in education in general. The evaluation, conducted with the supervision of the two authors, will be presented and briefly discussed mainly by a methodological perspective. It will focus on the way in which learning contexts, training contents and trainees characteristics have been included into the evaluative analysis as factors potentially able: a) to explain, at a system level, the learning outcomes of the students; b) to offer the local stakeholders a comprehensive set of information and evidences to be used for the improvement of VT policies, programmes and single interventions.
Key words: educational and vocational training, learning outcomes assessment, system evaluation, comparison, explication
Parole chiave: istruzione e formazione professionale, valutazione di sistema, valutazione degli apprendimenti, comparazione, spiegazione