Newsletter for European Research in Learning and Work [L&W]

Edition: October 2010 [www.news.wifo-gate.org][Impressum]

[Conferences] [Projects and Networks] [Publications]

Dear Colleagues

This is the first edition of the L&W Newsletter in its new format - highlighting the latest news on European research in learning and work, centred on three major categories: conferences, projects and networks, publications. It focuses on transnational research activities in the field of human resource development (HRD) and vocational education and training (VET) within Europe. Many thanks to all contributors of information for this initial edition of the Newsletter! The next edition will appear in early December 2010. You are welcome to submit short pieces of news (texts without attachments, but including links to web resources) - by 30 November 2010 at the latest!

With best wishes
Sabine Manning
Research Forum WIFO
Editor of the L&W Newsletter 



The European Conference on Educational Research (ECER) 2010 took place at the University of Helsinki. The main theme was Education and Cultural change. Over 1500 conference delegates participated in the sessions that were organized by 27 research networks. The programme of VETNET, the research network for vocational education and training, contained ca. 90 papers. This year the VETNET Opening Colloquium had the theme "Towards Multicultural VET - Recognition of Immigrants". This theme was introduced by Johanna Lasonen (University of South Florida) and Marianne Teräs (University of Helsinki). Their studies had focused on the integration of migrants in the Finnish society and on the role of vocational learning opportunities in migrants' career development. The discussion drew attention to the gaps between the migrants' needs and the institutional support that is offered by the educational authorities. 
     The discussions in all sessions were very inspiring and at the same time pointed out new needs for developing research on VET. In particular the research on multi-culturalism has neglected the role of the workplace learning. Yet, a major part of young European citizens go through vocational learning routes. Several presentations drew attention to the need to find new combinations between practical and theoretical learning instead of over-emphasising the importance of academic education. The papers are made available by the VETNET conference proceedings, edited by Ludger Deitmer, Sabine Manning and Marja-Leena Stenström (see www.ecer-vetnet-2010.wifo-gate.org). The ECER 2011 will be organised in Berlin (Free University of Berlin) from 12.9. to16.9. 2011. The conference will focus in the different learning networks in urban education. Further information under: www.eera-ecer.eu
(Posted by: Ludger Deitmer & Marja-Leena Stenström )

ESREA research conference 2010
The ESREA European triennial research conference took place in Linköping (Sweden) September 23-26. The conference was a success with a total of 166 registered participants and 115 paper presentations. By assigning a discussant for each paper, and also a 30 minute slot at the end of each session (consisting of 3 papers), there was plenty of room to discuss and debate common themes and issues at stake in the papers. Interesting keynotes were delivered by Tomasz Szkudlarek, Gdansk University and Karen Evans at the University of London, and the first issue of RELA was officially made available during the conference.
     There was also a pre-conference organized in connection to the triennial conference titled "Developing graduate research capabilities"; where 30 PhD students from all around the world participated. The next triennial conference will take place in 2013, and a call for proposals to host the next conference will be distributed during spring 2011.
(Quoted from: ESREA Newsletter No 4 -September- 2010)

International Conference on "Modeling and Measurement of Competencies in Higher Education"
Berlin (Maritim proArte Hotel) February 24/25, 2011
Experts from various countries and disciplines will present and discuss the international state of research. In presentations and panel discussions, different theoretical and methodological approaches as well as instruments will be introduced, and critically discussed in terms of their range, limitations, and applicability for the planned funding initiative of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).
     Call for Posters: We invite participants to submit a poster to the conference. The deadline for submission is December 10, 2010. For more information please see the call for posters on our conference website below.
     Organizers: Prof. Dr. Sigrid Blömeke (Humboldt University of Berlin) and Prof. Dr. Olga Zlatkin-Troitschanskaia (Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz); Contact for participants: Judith Fege (judith.fege@staff.hu-berlin.de). The registration fee is 200,00 ⬠(incl. catering and conference dinner). The number of participants is limited to a maximum of 200 persons. Further information as well as the online registration form can be found at www.competence-in-higher-education.com
(Posted by: Christiane Kuhn - Contact for speakers - christiane.kuhn@uni-mainz.de)

NOTE: Forthcoming and recent events related to European research in work and learning are listed on the WIFO Conference page [www.conferences.wifo-gate.org]. 
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Projects and Networks


One of the projects presented at the VETNET programme of ECER 2010 in Helsinki was the Euronet-PBL project (funded 2008-2010 as a multilateral project of the Erasmus programme.) The project examines the role of practice-based learning as contribution to university-enterprise cooperation in three domains (vocational teacher education, business administration and engineering studies). The project has carried out case studies, stakeholder interviews and evaluation workshops. This has made transparent major differences in the organisational arrangements for practice-based learning. On the basis of these analyses the project discusses the role of these findings and draws common conclusions for promoting the quality of practice-based learning and improving the cooperation between different parties involved. For more information see http://www.euronet-pbl.net
(Posted by: Pekka Kämäräinen)

Lifelong Learning 2010
The project focuses on the contribution of the education system to the implementation of lifelong learning and its role as a potential agent of social integration in Europe. Its aims and objectives are to study the effect of country-specific institutions on access of adults to the education system and to assess the effectiveness of access policies and practices in different EU member, as well as in associated countries and their implications for the creation of European knowledge society.
     Pre-announcement of the LLL2010 Final Conference: We welcome you on 7-8th of February, 2011 (Leuven, Belgium) to LLL2010 Final Conference - Do Three Sides Always Make a Triangle? Policy, Institutions and Learners in Lifelong Formal Learning. Conference registration will start in November 2011. Please find more on the preliminary programme on the project website [http://lll2010.tlu.ee/] under the "Meetings" folder on the left-side of the webpage. Contact Project Office: LLL2010@tlu.ee (Institute of International and Social Studies).
(Information from: Ides Nicaise; LLL2010 website http://lll2010.tlu.ee/)

The European Observatory on validation practices of non formal and informal learning in European countries [www.observal.org] is the key product of the OBSERVAL project which is funded by the Leonardo da Vinci programme and coordinated through EUCEN (European University Continuing Education Network). Together with partner experts from 24 countries of the European Union representing the different educational sectors (higher education, vocational education and training, adult education) the project has produced and collected different materials and documents which are now available and accessible via the Observatory. 
     EUCEN is organising the Final Dissemination Conference of the project OBSERVAL which will take place on 13th October 2010 at the University Club Foundation in Brussels.  During the Conference EUCEN will present the final results of the project and also it will be an opportunity to formally present the Observatory to the general public and to discuss how to implement this interesting and useful tool on Validation of Non-Formal and Informal Learning. Contact: EUCEN Projects Department at <projects@eucen.org>.
(Information from: Janine Voit; OBSERVAL website www.observal.org)

NOTE: The Overview of European research projects [www.projects.wifo-gate.org], provided as part of the WIFO Gateway, has just been updated, including references to nearly 20 current partnership projects related to VET and HRD. Furthermore, information on research networks in the field of European work and learning can be obtained from the WIFO page Networks at a glance [www.networks.wifo-gate.org].
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The State of Apprenticeships in 2010 - Report

Numbers and completion rates of apprenticeships in England are at an all-time high. Yet the country has a significantly lower proportion of apprentices in the labour force (11 per 1,000 employees) than France (17), Austria (33), Australia (37), Germany (40) and Switzerland (43). At the same time, fewer than one in ten employers in England offered apprenticeships in 2009, compared with a third of employers in Australia and a quarter in Austria, Germany and Switzerland. And in Germany, almost all very large firms (those with over 500 employees) took on apprentices in 2005, compared with under a third in England. The study also finds that England has the highest average apprenticeship wages and the shortest duration of training; that schools in England are often hostile to work-based learning and provide little or no assistance; and that funding arrangements, quality control and monitoring could be made much simpler and less burdensome. 
     These are among the findings of a new report - 'The State of Apprenticeships in 2010' - by Dr Hilary Steedman of the Centre for Economic Performance (LSE, UK), commissioned by the Apprenticeship Ambassadors Network (AAN), a group of senior business leaders committed to the expansion and development of apprenticeships.
The link is http://cep.lse.ac.uk/pubs/download/special/cepsp22.pdf
(Posted by: Hilary Steedman)

RELA - The European Journal for Research on the Education and Learning of Adults
The first issue of RELA [www.rela.ep.liu.se], under the title "Envisioning future research on the education and learning of adults", is now available online. The call for papers for the third issue,  titled "Adult education and the community", is also available on the website. Submission deadline: October 15, 2010. Papers related to the aims/scope of the journal are welcome for submission anytime.
(Quoted from: ESREA Newsletter No 4 -September- 2010)

International issues in adult education - Book series
Four books are out already and another four are in the pipeline. The editor, Peter Mayo (peter.mayo@um.edu.mt) encourages colleagues to submit proposals for manuscripts.
Further information: SensePublishers
(Posted by: Peter Mayo)

NOTE: Selected books, mainly produced by members of European research networks, with a focus on cross-European issues of work and learning, are being presented on the WIFO Bookshelf [www.books.wifo-gate.org]. In addition, the WIFO Gateway provides a classified collection of European and international Journals related to education research [www.journals.wifo-gate.org].
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Editor of the L&W Newsletter: Dr Sabine Manning, Research Forum WIFO (sm@wifo-gate.org);

Address: Neue Blumenstr. 1, D-10179 Berlin, Germany;
Editions of the L&W Newsletter: five times a year, every two months (at the beginning of February, April, June, August, October, December);
Deadline for contributions to the L&W Newsletter: end of January, March, May, July, September, November;
Circulation of the current L&W Newsletter: about 1100 experts in 40 countries;
Details and Archive of the L&W Newsletter [www.news.wifo-gate.org].
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 Editor: Sabine Manning © WIFO