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Lifelong Learning, eLearning and Access to learning EDEN Conference Helsinki, June 20-23 2005 Maruja Gutierrez Diaz Lifelong Learning: Innovation and transversal policies DG Education and Culture e-learning and access to learning About access Some thought-provoking views
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Lifelong Learning, eLearning and Access to learningEDEN Conference Helsinki, June 20-23 2005 Maruja Gutierrez Diaz Lifelong Learning: Innovation and transversal policies DG Education and Culture
e-learning and access to learning • About access • Some thought-provoking views • eLearning facts, myths and perspectives • The roles of governments
Is this access to learning? Share of the population aged 18-24 with only lower secondaryeducation and not in education or training (2004) E&T 2010 progress report 2004, DG EAC
Is this access to lifelong learning?Percentage of population aged 25-64 participating in education and training in 4 weeks prior to the survey (2004) E&T 2010 progress report 2004, DG EAC
Is this access to e-learning ? Ratio of pupils to computers in schools attended by pupils aged 15, 2000 and 2003 PISA, DG EAC 2005
How to measure access to learning ? Access to learning is a complex concept, depending on: • Technological issues (IT networks, devices…) • Social issues (attitudes, motivation, costs…) • Cultural issues (suitability, pedagogy…) • Personal issues (learning styles, disabilities…) • Content issues (quality, usability, design…) • Geographical issues (remote, non connected…) How to define access to learning?
Access as equity EGREES 2003
Policy Observatory for Lifelong Learning and Employability: Access as a personal issue • ICT helps us to go deeper, but so far not to go wider • Still need to increase number of learners and range of content • Focus on jobs; little focus on personal growth, self-esteem and society • Attitudes are important: ‘the joy of learning’ • Need to support individualised learning, in a learning society
Leonie: access as a core tension forEuropean learning systems • Globalisation vs. Contextualisation • Convergence vs. Divergence • Access vs. Excellence (quality vs. quantity) • Marketisation vs. Public good • Generalisation vs. Specialisation • Information vs. Knowledge • Individualisation vs. Socialisation of learning • Status quo E&T providers vs. New actors • Investment vs. Cost-effectiveness • Young vs. Adult education
Cited the personal cost of e-Learning as a barrier 41 Believed that techno fear was a barrier 45 Respondents agreed that Broadband access was a major 45 barrier Stated that teachers needed to be given incentives to take 66 the strategy forward Many teachers would not have the necessary IT skills. 75 Teachers would not have enough time to develop IT skills 79 113 Concerned about the digital divide Funding was the primary concern expressed 116 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 Responses out of 402 Access seen by users: Consultation for the Unified eLearning Strategy UK DfES, 2004
Some relevant e-learning facts / 1 • We are at a crucial stage, past the hype stage - both positive and negative hype • We have lost a number of unrealistic expectations, but we have also lost a number of fears and doubts • There is a general acceptance of online learning today that is different from the acceptance of distance learning in the past
Some relevant e-learning facts / 2 • There is a great opportunity to support learners withdisabilities through the use of technology • e-learning presents an opportunity to increase the interaction between learners and teachers • The knowledge society means a huge growth in demand for continuing professional development. e-learning is the only viable way to meet this demand • Learners, in particular young ones, are driving the e-learning process, in a bottom-up process of change.
Some relevant e-learning facts / 3 • e-learning policy is not about promoting e-learning. It is to address the learning needs of individuals, groups, disciplines and subjects, and to find the best possible way to do that • e-learning is part of a long-term evolution of learning and learning technologies • e-learning will be part of every learning experience ...and learning will be the better for it The future of e-Learning: realities, myths, challenges and opportunities Canada, Education Forum 2004
Nine e-learning myths • e-learning will save money • e-learning is a replacement for classroom teaching • e-learning is inherently superior or inferior to other alternatives. • Anyone can go on-line and do successful e-learning with no training • e-learning is one kind of delivery mode • e-learning is not a profit-generating venture • e-learning replaces teachers • e-learning is impersonal • Distance education will disappear OECD/CERI E-Learning Case Studies in Post-secondary Education & Training, 2005
Nine rationales for adopting an e-learning strategy • Flexibility of learning/student centred learning • Meet students’ expectation to use IT in learning • Enhance quality of teaching and learning • Increase access to knowledge • Increase cost effectiveness and exploit investment • Increase competitive advantage • Enhance integration within the institution • Enhance cooperation between institutions • Address external requirements (policy and practice) OECD/CERI E-Learning Case Studies in Post-secondary Education & Training, 2005
Main Government roles/strategiesfor e-learning • provision of special funding for e-learning projects and research • advocate for “non-traditional” learning and for lifelong learning • broker and funder of partnerships, collaboration and creation of new e-learning entities and services • investor in technology infrastructure and regulator of telecommunication services • initiator and funder of faculty and curriculum development for e-learning OECD/CERI E-Learning Case Studies in Post-secondary Education & Training, 2005
Other government roles/strategies relevant for e-learning • deregulation and streamlining of planning and oversight processes • stimulation of “best practices” and “choice” • creation of “utilities” or technology networks • information and protection of consumers • strategic investment on behalf of the state and its under-served “customers”in other words: fostering access OECD/CERI E-Learning Case Studies in Post-secondary Education & Training, 2005
eLearning Conferenceconclusions Despite the considerable efforts undertaken, the eLearning sector is still fragmented and there are many open questions surrounding the use of ICT and the skills needed to participate in the information society. A broad partnership between the various stakeholders of industry, education and training, public sector and civil society and social partners is needed to reap the full benefits of ICT and learning in the Knowledge Society.
Our discourse needs to be one of uncertainty and complexity. We haven’t yet learned to think of a permanently ongoing experiment as a statement of success. John Ralston Saul e-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org