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Electronic Platform for Adult Learning in Europe



Motivation and persistence: engaging all relevant target groups in basic skills learning - online discussion

by Zsolt Vincze


Welcome to the online discussion on ‘Motivation and persistence: engaging all relevant target groups in basic skills learning’ organised by the EBSN EPALE team!

The discussion is open to everyone and will take place on Thursday, 14th, starting from 12.00 (CET) and Friday, 15th June 2018. It will be moderated by EBSN Secretary General, Graciela Sbertoli.

Feel free to share your opinion and comment related to the questions below:

  • What are the success factors for national policies that aim to make a real impact on all target groups in need, both in terms of initial outreach and in terms of ensuring the persistence of learners in a continued learning process?
  • Do you know of any examples, in your own country or beyond, of successful programs for basic skills provision that engage learners within especially vulnerable target groups?
  • How can we ensure at policy level that basic skills provision is attractive, flexible, relevant, motivating, rewarding and leads to concrete and tangible results for the learners?

We look forward to reading your answers and discussing them with you and other colleagues.

**Please note that comments may be over several pages. Please refresh the page and scroll to the bottom to click through to comments on other pages.**

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Antonella Giles's picture

In our schools in St Theresa College in Malta, we offer talks for parents who would like to support their children but are not able to because of the lack of skills.  We often meet parents who would want to help their children but do not know how to.  Therefore, the Literacy team of teachers often organise workshops for such parents to impart skills on how to support the children with reading, for example.  The success of such workshops is that the target group (the parents) see the relevance of these meetings which in this case is the well-being of their children.  The outcome is relevant, significant and meaningful to them, thus encouraging them to attend.  Other areas included Numeracy and Health and Safety.

Ana Isa Figueira's picture

 How can we ensure at policy level that basic skills provision is attractive, flexible, relevant, motivating, rewarding and leads to concrete and tangible results for the learners?

Adults tend to invest in their training only when they realize the benefits that it can give them. So, training actions must have impact in their lives to lead adults to better lives. Moreover, these initiatives should assure training actions adjusted to each person and to their rhythms and availability. Otherwise, adults will not participate or get motivated to learn new skills.

Training activities based on day-to-day activities tend to be successful and help in order for these adults to adhere to new levels of training.

Training should also focus on the adult so that the adult feels integrated. Thus, actions that depart from what the adult already knows, adding then what he does not know yet are more appropriate.

Graciela Sbertoli's picture
I will probably be in touch again right after the summer, Ana Isa. We need to talk! :-)
Graciela Sbertoli's picture
Dear all,
The moderation time for this online discussion is about to end. Do feel free, however, to continue commenting and writing your input. Thank you for the conversation!
In our small community in the West fjords in Iceland the success factor in our national policies is truly the individual guidance counselling that the target group has the right to have free of charge. 
We find it the best way to reach the target group is to go to the workplaces and offer the employers to offer their employees to see the guidance counsellors in their workplace. After that the employees (our target group) comes to our life long centre for further guidance of further studies. We find it crucial to work with the workplaces since employers can encourage their staff to take part in learning both inside and outside the workplace. 
Monika Sulik's picture
I think it is a fantastic initiative. Individual counseling is certainly an opportunity for employees to manage their professional development. I regret to say that I do not know much about this type of practice in Poland. So maybe it's time to get inspired by more experienced people.
Graciela Sbertoli's picture
Thank you for your contribution, Monika! We would indeed be very interested in knowing a bit more about how you work with basic skills provision for adults in Poland. The only Polish member in the EBSN works mainly with digital competence, a very important basic skill but absolutely not the only one we need to focus on. Tell us more! :-)
Monika Sulik's picture

Thank you very much for your inquire. Unfortunately, I get the impression that in Poland the skills - basic competences of adults work mainly in two situations: 1. At the moment when someone is looking for a job - that is, broadly designed activities for the unemployed or 2. Training and courses for employees as part of becoming better work, expanding the offer, etc. Particularly visible are activities within large corporations, large projects. I work at the University and here, for new employees, unfortunately, there are no planned training to prepare for the scientific and didactic work. Some universities organize, from time to time, didactic workshops for employees, but this is not a frequent initiative. Therefore, for most academic teachers starting their work the only preparation is their own experience from the time of their studies.

Graciela Sbertoli's picture
Hi again, Monika! I think you have started two comments and been unable to complete them... I deleted the 2nd one. I hope you try again! :-)