Study on the nationwide implementation of “PraeLab“

The dual system of vocational training in Germany is internationally known to be successful. One reason is the comparatively good prospects of young adults with vocational training in the labor market. However, lately problems of the German education system are discussed. This includes, among other things, many young people finishing their education prematurely without a degree. Apprenticeship termination can result in negative consequences for the trainees themselves, for the training companies, for the social and educational system, and ultimately for the entire national economy. The current vocational training report of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research shows a contract resolution rate of 25.8 % for 2016, which has risen by 0.9 %compared to the previous year.

With PraeLab, the Federal Employment Agency (BA) has been pursuing a preventive approach to apprenticeship terminations in the dual system of vocational training for several years. Trainees who are potentially at risk of termination are to be identified at an early stage with the help of a web-based competency reflection tool and supported by a counseling service in order to avert the threat of dropping out of training.

In 2016, an extended trial of PraeLab started at a total of 14 employment agencies. In four of these agencies, an evaluation took place, which was already the responsibility of the IAW. Subsequently, in April 2017 the BA resolved on the nationwide facultative roll out starting 2018.

In the course of this roll out, the BA again commissioned the IAW with the scientific monitoring and evaluation. The aim of the evaluation is to gain insights into the implementation and effects of the PraeLab process, to identify the need for improvement and to derive recommendations for action from it. The focus is on the following questions:

  • Is PraeLab a suitable tool to identify apprentices who are at risk of dropping out at an early stage and to motivate them to seek counseling? Can the target group actually be reached and for what reasons is this possible/not possible?
  • Which role does networking among relevant actors play within the entire PraeLab process?

The evaluation combines qualitative and quantitative research methods. With an implementation analysis, the specific aspects of execution and realisation of PraeLab are to be recorded and described in detail. Therefore guided expert interviews and problem-centered interviews are combined. In order to obtain reliable background information as well, an evaluation of quantitative framework data is carried out. The overall aim oft the impact analysis is to provide information about the achievement of goals within PraeLab.

Commissioned by:

Project team:

Contact Person:
Andrea Kirchmann ( +49 7071 9896 33 // E-Mail )


2018 - 2019