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European Developments in Adult Education


Formal non-vocational adult education continuing; further; recurrent; second ... initial & continuing professional development of adult education personnel ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: European Developments in Adult Education

European Developments in Adult Education
  • Adult education as economic social policy and
    social movement
  • Thursday 9th November 2006

  • Scope of NVAE throughout Europe
  • Policy goals for NVAE
  • Frameworks
  • policy
  • legislative
  • administrative
  • financial
  • qualifications
  • quality
  • Who is learning?
  • Organising the learning
  • What are adults learning?

Scope of Adult Education
  • Adult Education as in Non-vocational Adult
    Education (NVAE) the Grundtvig thematic area
  • Formal non-vocational adult education
    continuing further recurrent second-chance
    compensatory palliative adult education as
    economic social policy
  • Non-formal non-vocational adult education
    liberal popular community socio-cultural
    adult education as social policy social
  • No specific references to
  • UCE (university continuing education) or ULL
    (university lifelong learning) although part of
  • Vocational training Leonardo programme areas

Policy Goals throughout Europe
  • Many countries are aiming to
  • increase the quantity quality of adult learning
  • promote an holistic approach across all adult
  • promote an integrated approach between multiple
  • Countries are creating frameworks to support NVAE
    policy, legislative, administrative,
    financial, institutional, informational,
    qualifications quality

Policy framework for NVAE at national levels
  • Lifelong learning as
  • a vision
  • a conceptual framework for thinking about
    education training and
  • a guiding principle for provision and
    participation across all learning contexts
  • Lisbon Agenda and Education Training 2010
    driving developments in all countries
  • In some countries - a range of collateral
    policies, in social welfare training
    employment health . . . .

Legislative Framework
  • No single piece of legislation provides the legal
    framework NVAE weakly regulated in the majority
    of countries
  • Adult education as part of legislation on
    general education higher education
    qualifications system quality assurance
    employment welfare health
  • Positive or negative . . . . BUT a growing
  • Trend towards co-ordination coherence ,
    indeed, integration this is reflected in

Administrative Framework
  • No single ministry has the monopoly of
    responsibility for adult learning in majority of
    countries education, training, employment etc.
  • A wide range of stakeholders in adult learning
    learners ministries regional authorities
    employers social partners providers -gt
    fragmentation, duplication dilution of impact
  • Trends
  • inter-ministerial structures mechanisms
  • national /or regional co-ordinating bodies
  • decentralisation of decision-making
  • Trends
  • Co-ordination at national and/or regional
    ministry level
  • Decentralisation

Financial Framework
  • A number of balances to be addressed
  • funding HRD (human resources development) and/or
    HPD (human potential development)?
  • supply-side and/or demand-side financing?
  • intensive (small number) and/or extensive
    financing (greater number)?
  • role of the different stakeholders?
  • financing as productivity enhancement as
    redistribution an equity mechanism?
  • Trends
  • demand-side funding ILAa grants vouchers
  • stakeholder co-financing
  • public funding in cases of market failure
  • Adult education as strategic investment rather
    than individual consumption

Qualifications Framework
  • National Trends
  • legislation
  • national/regional awarding body
  • national/regional Framework of Qualifications
    with levels - 1 10 or 1 - 8
  • development of specific certification systems -
    literacy languages ICTs
  • recognition of non-formal informal learning
    for mainly vocational purposes . . .
  • European Trend
  • European Qualifications Framework ( 1 8) - to
    act as exchange mechanism/currency converter

Quality Framework
  • European education training systems to be a
    world quality reference
  • by 2010 (European Council, Barcelona 2002)
  • Trends
  • legislation (formal NVAE)
  • information guidance systems
  • accreditation of providers (mostly in formal
  • internal quality assurance approaches (formal
    non-formal NVAE)
  • external monitoring evaluation /or inspection
    (formal NVAE)
  • external assessment of learning outcomes (more in
    formal NVAE)
  • self-evaluation by providers (formal non-formal
  • initial continuing professional development of
    adult education personnel (limited but more in
    formal NVAE )
  • information gathering systems being established
    to enable evidence-based policy-makin

Who was learning in 2005 (LFS)? Trends
  • EU25 average 10.8 participation by adults aged
    25 64 4-week reference period
  • Range in EU25 from 1.8 to 34.7
  • Range in 32 countries (EU25, EEA, BG RO, TR
    HR from 1.1 to 34.7 NO at 19.5
  • Substantial cross-national differences in volume
    of education training . . . . BUT
  • Remarkable cross-national similarities in
    distribution of education training Mathew
    effect Cf Grundtvig target groups

Organising the Learning - Trends
  • Paradigm shifts, for example
  • education -gt learning
  • formal only -gt formal, non-formal, informal
  • front-loading -gt lifelong
  • inputs -gt outcomes
  • provider-centred/teacher-centred -gt
    learner-centred (supply side - gt demand side)
  • a more symmetrical pedagogy teacher as lead
  • Structuring the learning flexibility
  • Sequencing -gt modular unitised
  • Personalising -gt tailor-made ILPs (individual
    learning plans)
  • Scheduling gt anytime-anyplace

What are adults learning in NVAE?
  • Some combination of the following
  • Communication in the mother tongue
  • Communication in foreign languages very limited
  • Mathematical competence and basic competences in
    science technology (the latter is limited)
  • Digital competence
  • Learning to learn
  • Interpersonal, intercultural and social
    competences and civic competence
  • Entrepreneurship (personal community-related?)
  • Cultural expression
  • Key Competences for Lifelong Learning A
    European Reference Framework (November
  • 2005 Recommendation of the European Parliament
    and of the Council )

Spectrum of Developments
  • From To
  • policies in place
  • legislation in place
  • co-ordination of stakeholders
  • stakeholder co-financing
  • qualifications framework
  • quality frameworks
  • participation above European
  • average
  • good information on adult
  • learning -gt evidence-based
  • policy-making
  • limited policy-making
  • little or no legislation
  • fragmentation
  • limited or no public financing
  • fragmented qualifications
  • limited focus on quality
  • participation below European
  • average
  • limited information on adult
  • learning activities so little
  • evidence for policy-making

Why adult learning?
  • economic EU Lisbon Agenda, OECD, G7, National
    Development Plans summed up by
  • Learning Pays
  • Learning a Living
  • You earn what you learn
  • social political - EU, UNESCO, Council of
    Europe, liberal adult education movements
  • personal, social political -, community
    educators - Freire, Mezirow, Rogers

Adult education as economic or social policy or
social movement?
  • Human resources/employability paradigm (HRD) -
    the role of adult learning is to
  • enhance individual employability
  • promote adaptability in the labour market
  • underpin economic competitiveness growth
  • The main practical policy is to
  • ensure supply uptake of lifelong learning
  • ensure relevance of learning content to labour
    market requirements
  • determine balance between education and
    vocational employment specific training

Social Cohesion Paradigm
  • Human potential/social cohesion paradigm (HPD)-
    is concerned not only with threats to the economy
    but also with threats to society social
  • The main practical policy is to
  • ensure supply uptake of adult learning
  • support non-formal adult education for personal
    development and social cohesion

Equality Paradigm
  • Equality paradigm - is concerned with redressing
    inequalities in access, participation, outcomes
    conditions in terms of levels types of
    qualifications obtained. Inequalities associated
    with gender -- social class -- ethnicity --
    disability. Relationship between educational
    levels social economic position causes
  • Major policy concern is to
  • ensure that adult learning does not generate
    perpetuate systematic inequalities in access,
    participation outcomes
  • address Mathew effect through financing
    targeting etc
  • support non-formal adult education for personal
    development and social cohesion

Adult Education in Norway
Majority of the trends outlined above are
visible in NVAE in Norway majority of the
elements of an effective adult education system
Grubb, N. (2004) IN OECD-KRIVET (2004) Adult
Learning Policies and Practices, Proceedings of
a Joint OECD-KRIVET International Conference,
Seoul OECD-KRIVET (Korea Research Institute for
Vocational Education and Training).
Responses of the Grundtvig Action past and
  • Target groups priority adults
  • Themes - adult education formal and non-formal
    as social economy policy as social movement
  • overcoming barriers to participation
  • financing adult education
  • basic skills development
  • teaching methodologies
  • assessment qualifications recognition of
    non-formal/informal learning
  • management of adult education
  • quality of adult education including initial
    continuing professional development of AE staff