There is a variety of character progression System in Crowfall, the most basic ones are:
Passive skill training (account wide): This is the most basic form of character advancement and allows to specialize an account in professions, races, classes.
Active leveling: killing mobs and sacrificing items generates XP. Each level the Vessel gains additional stat points to distribute. The benefits per level are pretty small and its intended to max a character out within a week.
Races, Classes, Advantages/Disadvantages, and Disciplines in Crowffal allow for extensive customization and millions of unique builds.
Advantages/Disadvantages - When creating a vessel you'll be able to pick a set of advantages and disadvantages (to balance it out) to customize your character.
Races & Classes
Crowfall offers the ability for players to select one of 12 Races: Human, Half-Elf, Nethari, Fey, Wood-Elf, High-Elf, Stoneborn, Half-Giant, Elken, Minotaur, Centaur and Guinecean and 11 Classes: Knight, Confessor, Templar, Ranger, Assassin, Druid, Frostweaver, Champion, Myrmidon, Cleric and Duelist.
Here is a chart that shows the Race/Class combinations that will be available at launch