The RENEWAL project will bring together the representatives and providers of the two less developed adult education regions (Southern Europe and Central Eastern Europe) to give them the opportunity to exchange their experiences, challenges and developments on the Renewed European Agenda for adult learning. More...
What is it for?
The Electronic Platform for Adult Learning in Europe (EPALE) is an upcoming online space to exchange, showcase, and promote methods of good practice in adult education, scheduled to come online in late 2014. Individuals involved in organising and delivering adult education will be able to access an adult learning platform to share the latest developments and learn from each other.
What will it involve?
EPALE will support the following goals:
- make lifelong learning and exchange of experience a reality;
- improve the quality and efficiency of adult learning;
- Promote equality, social cohesion and active citizenship through adult learning.
Anyone involved in providing and organising adult education, including teaching and administrative staff, researchers, policy-makers, media, etc. employed at adult education organisations within the participating countries will be able to take part, among others. Anyone will be able to view ‘open access’ content online. Further information will be provided as the initiative develops.
Find out more
What is the Commission doing?
The Commission is working with 32 countries to implement the European Agenda for Adult Learning . The Agenda highlights the need to increase participation in adult learning of all kinds (formal, non-formal and informal learning) whether to acquire new work skills, for active citizenship, or for personal development and fulfilment. For example, the Commission coordinates a network of national coordinators who promote adult learning in their countries, provide policy advice and support, and gather and disseminate best practices. The Commission also works with a range of European associations, networks, and labour organisations to promote adult learning.
Why is it needed?
More adult learning can help Europe overcome the economic crisis, meet the need for new skills, and keep its ageing workforce productive. Learning is also essential for social inclusion and active citizenship. These days, people cannot just rely on the skills they acquired at school to last them till the end of their working life. The participation of adults in learning varies significantly between EU countries: from 1.4% to 31.6% (2012 figures), and the overall trend is that numbers are stagnating. Participation rates are especially disappointing for low-skilled and older adults. Action at European level will increase knowledge about successful policies, provide support, and enable a better exchange of experiences between countries.
What has been done so far?
To support policy developments:
- EU countries have set a target for adult learning: by 2020, 15% of adults aged 25-64 should be taking part. In 2012, average participation was 9% and only 5 EU countries had reached the target rate;
- The Commission publishes indicators and data on the current situation in member countries, reports on progress in implementing policies and proposes new policy;
- The Commission facilitates exchange of good practice and peer learning on policies in the Education and Training 2020 work programme , working groups, and networks on dedicated themes have been convened for limited periods;
- The Commission has commissioned studies that bring evidence and data to support more effective policies. See more...
This new initiative funded by the European Commission is the latest development in the EU’s long-term commitment to promoting high quality adult learning in Europe.
The new platform is open to teachers, trainers and volunteers, as well as policy-makers, researchers and academics involved in adult learning.
Links: EPALE. See more...
By Chari Leader-Kelley - EvoLLLution. Three promising innovations hold the greatest potential for cutting costs (and student loan debt) for the millions of adults who seek to remain competitive in our challenging and dynamic labor market. All three of these innovations were likely viewed as “fringe elements” only five years ago. But, with the call for greater accountability, transparency and innovation in higher education coming from the folks who hold the purse strings, all three of these innovations are gaining traction. In fact, all of these innovations are possible because of technology and because they leverage experiential, self-directed learning. More...
By Tracy Lorenz. How successful is higher education, today, when it comes to serving working adults?
When you look at the statistics, only 30 percent of working adults in the United States have a degree. However, when you look at the research, it shows that 75 percent want more education. So you think of this as a supply and a demand issue, but only five percent [of working adults] think they can afford it. …
We believe everyone should have access to affordable college degrees that are attainable. While great things are happening in the higher education space today, I think we have a lot more work to do. More...
IDEAL aims to study the impact of distance education on the participation of adult learners in European higher education by analysing: the current offer of distance education in Europe, and who it is designed for and the social profile and needs of current and potential distance education students.
Increasing attainment levels of adult learners in higher education is an important objective of lifelong learning. EU Member States agreed to raise the benchmark for adult participation in lifelong learning to 15% by 2020. However there is still a long way to go. As data from the Labour Force Survey demonstrate, the average rate has fallen since 2005 to only 8.9% in 2011. The IDEAL consortium believes Open and Distance Learning (ODL) can contribute significantly to making higher education more accessible to adults, and ultimately to many. Project Link. More...
Increasing the participation of adult learners in higher education is an important objective in European education policy. At the same time, higher education institutions are diversifying their services to reach out to adult learners. One form of such outreach are distance education programmes.
Against this backdrop, the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL), together with the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), and StudyPortals (SP) has set out to examine the potential of distance education as provided by higher education institutions on adult learning in Europe. The project, which is entitled “Impact of Distance Education on Adult Learning” (IDEAL) is funded by the European Commission’ Lifelong Learning Programme.
Running from October 2013 until September 2014, the project will optimise our knowledge of distance learning services throughout Europe and provide valuable information on the profiles of potential students.
For more information on the project, please visit: www.idealproject.eu
By Vanessa Milne. Since 2008 74,000 people have participated in an Ontario program that funds post-secondary education. After Sambra Marrodan from Aurora was laid off in 2012 she had trouble finding work. She’d been a billing analyst for Rogers Communications for about six years, but the training she had received “was strictly Rogers, their software, their data,” she says, so it wasn’t transferable. More...