This catalogue of free digital learning initiatives has been finalized as of January 2019. The project’s team will continue to receive requests for new initiatives, however the catalogue will be updated once a year until the end of December 2019. The catalogue is open and freely accessible to all interested parties. Submit an initiative that fits the purpose of the project to be considered for the catalogue.

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  • Language learning
  • Support Personnel
The Erasmus+ Online Linguistic Support (OLS) offers online language courses to higher education students, vocational education and training learners, as well as young volunteers taking part in the Erasmus+ programme. The European Commission extended this service to the benefit of 100.000 refugees over 3 years, on a voluntary basis and free of charge for them. OLS language courses offer a variety of modules covering different language skills, including professional contents and interactive activities such as MOOCs and tutoring sessions.
In the participating countries, access to OLS is granted to refugees who wish to improve their knowledge in one of the languages available by a participating Erasmus+ beneficiary institution or organisation. OLS licences are also available for operators for instruction and support purposes. Operators can be identified within the Erasmus+ beneficiary institution/organisation (Erasmus+ beneficiaries involved can therefore receive OLS licences for instruction purposes) or NGOs/other organisations dealing directly with refugees.
OLS can be accessed online by anyone with an internet connection. It is compatible with mobile devices and all major browsers.
Title Erasmus+ Online Linguistic Support for Refugees
Date launched July 2016
Duration 3 years
Type of Resource Online Language Courses / Online Training Course / Online Platform / Online Linguistic Support
Purpose Language Learning
Online or Blended Online
Learning objectives

In the light of the current migration crisis, the OLS for Refugees initiative aims to support the efforts of EU Member States to integrate refugees into Europe’s education and training systems and contribute to their skills development.

With the OLS for Refugees, refugees can assess their language level and access online language courses, MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) and tutoring sessions in the language of their choice, for a maximum of 13 months. OLS is currently available in Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, French, German, Greek, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish and Swedish.

Target group
  • Refugees
OLS is now available to refugees based on the definition found in Art. 2 of Directive 2011/95/EU. This includes:
  • individuals having already obtained refugee status after asylum application
  • individuals having received a positive asylum decision with refugee status
  • individuals having received a positive asylum decision with temporary/subsidiary protection or humanitarian protection
  • asylum applicants,without age limits.
  • Participating Erasmus+ beneficiaries or NGOs/other organisations dealing directly with refugees can also receive OLS licences to guide and support refugees in their use of OLS.
Evaluation results/ monitoring plan The OLS for Refugees initiative is implemented via a service framework contract. Monitoring is ensured by the Commission (both DG EAC and the Audiovisual, Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA)).
Recognition or certification of learning Refugees need to take a first language assessment to find out what their current language level is, before they receive access to the course. After taking the assessment, they can download a summary of results which is in line with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)..
At the end of the language course, they receive a record of participation indicating the number of hours spent on the course. Finally, refugees can take a second optional language assessment in order to measure their progress in the language, following which they can download a new summary of results reflecting their new language level.
Financing and sustainability model The OLS for Refugees initiative is financed by the European Commission in the framework of the Erasmus+ programme and is running for three years, starting from July 2016.
Leading Organization European Commission (DG Education and Culture)
Contact Person National agencies: