GINCO News March 2012

GINCO: GRUNDTVIG INTERNATIONAL NETWORK OF COURSE ORGANISERS
GINCO is a Grundtvig International Network of Course Organisers,
funded with support of the Lifelong Learning Programme of the
European Commission, run by an international consortium of
21 partners from 14 different countries. GINCO aims to create a
European wide network of adult education organisations actually running
Grundtvig courses or willing to do so in the future. The aim of the
network is to share expertise, to collect, create and share useful material
and to enhance communication and cooperation in order to improve
the quality of Grundtvig courses, to enlarge the scope of provision and
to improve the visibility and success of the Grundtvig IST action and
the courses.
EUROPEAN VIEW ON PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT IN
ADULT EDUCATION
The European Commission’s Action Plan on
Adult Learning has set the targets and steps
for building a “high quality and accessible
adult learning system”. A number of
priorities in this Action Plan deal
with the quality of adult education
staff and the introduction of
innovation. These targets are in line
with the Europe 2020 priorities. Quality
in adult education provision and delivery, validation
of informal learning outcomes, a European scope
and intercultural awareness, networking skills and competence
driven teaching and learning are elements contributing to this
innovation and envisaged raise in quality of adult education.
European in-service training courses, as developed in the Grundtvig
programme, can be a model for innovative solutions in these priority
areas. They can help create a European area of adult education and be
a driver for innovation and the transfer of knowledge and expertise.
GINCO, the Grundtvig International Network of Course Organisers
strives to enhance and improve this role of Grundtvig courses in a
European innovation policy.
COMPETENCE DRIVEN TEACHING AND LEARNING
As part of the Lisbon Strategy the concept of lifelong learning implies
a focus on competences - rather than knowledge - as outcomes
of the learning process. In this concept the role of education should
change to stimulating and helping the learner to acquire
these competences. Further professional development of
the adult educators is crucial in this process; they too
have to become lifelong learners. In this respect the
Grundtvig courses can be the ideal vehicle
for the professionalization of adult education
staff. To this end, GINCO strives to
enlarge the Grundtvig training provision,
including courses on competence driven
education. Moreover the network will
help course organisers adapt the course delivery
and organise competence driven courses, in which
adult educators as participants experience the approach themselves.
This is the best way to introduce competence based education and
learning.
VALIDATION OF LEARNING OUTCOMES
Another element of this approach is the validation of learning outcomes.
Adults should have the possibility to have their learning recognized
and validated. While a number of instruments have proved to be
very useful for vocational education and training, at this stage the validation
of learning outcomes in informal and non-formal general adult
education is largely missing. In the past two years, the GINCO network
collected and developed tools and materials on course quality and validation
of learning outcomes, which will be described in this newsletter.
COURSE PROVISION
Currently the network partners are working on a third important
topic: course provision. The present Grundtvig course provision and
national course provision for adult educators have been analysed and
the GINCO network is identifying the levers to enlarge the international
course provision in line with the LLP policy for adult education
and adult educators’ needs. This will be the topic of the third GINCO
conference, where the GINCO Quality Award will be presented and
the winning courses will be announced. This conference will take place
in Hasselt (BE) from 26 till 29 September 2012. More information on
this conference is available on www.ginconet.eu.

and other stories........

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