/epale/en/file/social-media-adult-learning-0Social Media Adult Learning
Guest author Josep Miquel Arroyo talks about the importance of social media and community platforms for adult learning practitioners.
Back in November last year, I saw a tweet from ACEFIR, the Catalan Association for Adult Education, Training and Research. In it, ACEFIR celebrated the fact that adult education in Spain was beginning to get the attention it deserved, largely due to the number of people who were writing about it. So much content, according to ACEFIR, that there was no time to read it all!
Adult learning's increasing popularity
Now, this is a bold and possibly optimistic statement, but one that I agree with and I am happy to share. An example of this is the latest issue of the journal enTERA2.0, published by the education and technology association Espiral. There you will find a very good collection of articles, experiences and resources produced by adult education professionals that exemplify the effervescence that currently exists in the field. And for now this is just the tip of the iceberg. Another example is the account @fadultos and the community that has built up around it on Twitter. If you speak Spanish or Catalan, @fadultos has many posts that will arouse your interest, all, of course, linked to adult education. It is worth spending some time to follow the various links and learn about other centres, and other realities. You will find voices of teachers with a desire to reflect on their work, explain a classroom project or discuss the improvements in policy that adult education needs. Throughout Spain, there has been an increase in the number of teachers who want to share their thoughts, projects and reflections with others. There is a growing number of groups and associations, spaces for debate, and of course exciting new projects. Above all, there is a clear desire to make the work done in adult education centres visible.
Don't be shy, #spread the word
In conclusion, we need to share more widely what is happening in adult education. There is a lot to talk about here in Spain, but I am sure this upsurge in interest in adult education happens in other places across Europe. I am sure that there is a lot happening in your country too. Social media and, of course, EPALE have brought us closer together and given us the opportunity to share knowledge in one way or another.
Why not join in and write a blog post? Let people know what you do in the classroom; give an opinion on the state of adult education; write a post about a social event at your centre. Whatever you do, share it. It is time to stop feeling like lone riders and ride together to spread the word about everything we are: a must-have service for people's quality of life.
Josep Miquel Arroyo is a graduate in Catalan Philology (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona) and also holds a Master's Degree in Teacher Training in Catalan for Adults (Universitat de Barcelona). Currently, he is a PhD student at the University of Vic while working as a professor of Catalan language and literature at the Centre de Formació Permanent d’Osona Sud.