COUNCIL OF EUROPE: CEFR Companion Webinar series


During 2021 there will be eight webinars/online workshops. These will take place in the first week of the month, normally on the first Thursday, in the months of February, March, May, June, September, October, November and December. This webinar series is a follow up to the videoconference entitled “The CEFR Companion Volume: A Key Resource for Inclusive Plurilingual Education” held on 16 December 2020. The webinars are intended to help language professionals familiarize themselves with the  concepts elaborated in the Companion Volume and consider ways in which they may be integrated into teaching and learning practices. Some of the webinars will be presentations, whilst others will be workshops.

The first webinar entitled “Action-oriented plurilingual mediation in collaborative tasks” will take place on 4 February 2021 from 16.00 until 18.30 CET. It will be moderated by Brian North. This webinar will remind participants of the implications for classroom practice  of the concept of mediation, as outlined in the CEFR Companion Volume, before presenting for discussion examples of action-oriented tasks in which learners mediate texts and concepts, using different languages. It will be organised in a workshop form where participants will be presented to the concept and then work on “individual crosslinguistic activities” in sub-groups.

The webinar will be limited to 90 participants who will be selected on a first come first served basis. Please register here by 29 January 2021. We will send you an invitation including the link for the webinar and workshop materials after the registration is closed.

Participants will be provided with a Certificate of Attendance after the webinar.

The second webinar entitled ”Digital agency in social practice and language education: the CEFR Companion volume and online interaction” will take place on 4 March 2021 from 16.00 until 18.30 CET. It will be moderated by Bernd Rüschoff. This webinar will focus on the link between real-world contexts and language education, and the contribution that the CEFR Companion Volume and its descriptors make to designing environments in which learners can exercise their agency in situated, social practice. Registration for this webinar will be available after the first webinar.


Twenty years after the publication of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, teaching, assessment, best known worldwide as the CEFR, the Council of Europe proudly announced in April 2020 the publication of the final edition of the CEFR Companion volume (

The CEFR Companion volume is the product of over six years of conceptual reflection and empirical validation in a multi-phase international collaborative project. The Companion Volume:

–      completes and clarifies the CEFR descriptive model by defining and further expanding constructs,

–      extends and completes the CEFR set of descriptors, and

–      broadens the conceptualisation of language education.

In the past 30 years, since the beginning of the development of the CEFR, societies have become more complex, characterised by an escalating movement of people and goods and an increasing number of migrants and refugees. In this changing socio-political landscape, the role of languages needs to be reconsidered. Far from being necessary for transactional communication only, languages are pivotal for mutual understanding, intercultural dialogue, and access to knowledge. Education is faced with new challenges such as valuing and fostering linguistic and cultural diversity in the classroom, promoting inclusiveness, reconsidering the role of the languages of schooling, distance learning and developing “21st century skills”. At the core of these challenges are languages. Everything happens through languages and languages are everywhere.

The CEFR Companion Volume therefore further elaborates a number of innovative concepts that were introduced to language education in the CEFR. These include the action-oriented approach, mediation, plurilingual and pluricultural competence, online interaction and, in general, the way the CEFR and its descriptors can be used to align planning – at the curriculum and class level – teaching, and assessment.