E-LEARNING FOR LIFELONG LEARNING OF FEMALE INMATES: THE EPRIS PROJECT
1 RECI- - IP (PORTUGAL)
2 RECI-IP / CIIE- FPCEUP (PORTUGAL)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN15 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Conference name: 7th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2015
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:The transformations within the knowledge and information society have made it easy for the lifelong learning paradigm to emerge (Antunes, 2008). According to this paradigm, educational phenomena have been addressed in line with an extensive, equitable, and holistic logic, which includes the human being in its integral educability, that is, learning at the personal, social, and professional levels, in formal, no-formal, and informal contexts became valued (Jarvis, 2006). This new educational paradigm is also regarded as an integrating and organizing principle of education, connected to the adult’s right to learn, giving it the capacity to transform the symbolic universe, values, and personal resources that can be enhanced according to the individual and collective needs (Martínez, 2002). Under this principle, adults socially excluded have the right to a quality and diversified education (Council of Europe Recommendation on Education in Prison, 2011), which must be suited to the requirements of “Information Society” (Castells, 2000).
The European Union has developed measures that address the need to find answers to the challenges caused by the information society, in particular through the modernization of social policies. Promoting and widening the access to educational opportunities is a key element in the perspective of economical development and as a guarantee of social cohesion and ICT training plays a fundamental role in this intervention-paradigm change. In this context, E-learning has been singled out as a means to promote lifelong learning, contributing to sustainable economic growth and social cohesion. The purpose of this article is to analyse the limits and potential of e-learning as a means of lifelong learning for female prison inmates and also to present “E-learning in prison project” (EPRIS). This project supports ICT training initiatives associated with gender equality promotion, as a strategic instrument for a sustainable, modern and innovative social and economical development. From a methodological point of view, data was collected by document analysis and by a questionnaire submitted to the trainees. The main results show that online education may be an integration agent of individuals at risk of social and professional exclusion, and it constitutes an innovative option to training opportunities currently on offer in a correction facility context. The possibility of effective empowerment of the project beneficiaries is considerably increased since they become co-responsible for the followed pathways (starting on the problem diagnosis, solutions proposal and conception, development, training process itself, evaluation and, finally, impact assessment).
Keywords: Lifelong learning, e-learning, adult education.