European Lifelong Guidance Policy Network Database, ELGPN Database



Lifelong guidance


A range of activities that enables citizens of any age and at any point in their lives to identify their capacities, competences and interests, to make educational, training and occupational decisions and to manage their individual life paths in learning, work and other settings in which these capacities and competences are learned and/or used.


This is an approach to guidance which does not see it as a one-off or single point in time activity. It argues for guidance to be delivered proactively and not just at transition points and refers to guidance activity undertaken throughout life (i.e. at any lifestage) and that takes a lifelong perspective (i.e. from early in school and throughout both working and non-working life).
Life-wide guidance is a dimension of lifelong guidance just as life-wide learning is a dimension of lifelong learning. Life-wide guidance can be formal, non-formal or informal and can take place across the full range of life activities (personal, social or professional), across all sectors (education, initial training, employment and continuing training) and at any stage.


Council of the European Union, (2008). Council Resolution on better integrating lifelong guidance into lifelong learning strategies. Available from Internet:

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ELGPN Glossary, guidance, lifelong