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European Approaches to Inter-Generational Lifelong Learning (EAGLE)

Anonymous (not verified)
Published on: 09/04/2008 Document Archived

EAGLE is an ‘Observatory’ project, supported under the EC Grundtvig Programme that is collecting, analysing and showcasing examples of inter-generational learning. Many of the examples entail the use of ICTs to support collaborative working and knowledge creation between generations. This will lead to the formulation, selection and implementation of European action research based pilot experimentation. These experiments throughout Europe will test new ways of promoting inter-generational learning.

Policy Context

EAGLE wants to generate insight into the following areas: - Firstly, the potential as well as the limitations of trans-, inter-generational and later life formal and informal learning. - Secondly, the policies, concepts, analyses, frameworks, experiences in place and empirical evidence available. - Thirdly, the models of good practice developed; those good practice cases which are likely to be generalised, transferred, localised and useful to generate policy and practice recommendations; the criteria to systematically identify their related strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats combined into a consistent description framework of good practice cases based on a consensual grid and terminology useful to describe cases of practice in a way they can be compared across different fields, different participating age groups, different types of interactions etc.

Description of target users and groups

Families, older people, young people, commercial enterprises, NGOs, Governments.

Description of the way to implement the initiative

Partnership with 10 core partners; associated partners from government and community-based organisations

Technology solution

Technology choice: Open source software

Main results, benefits and impacts

Based on desk, field and action research-based analysis and piloting activities, EAGLE aims finally at setting up a dialogue including researchers, developers, implementation practitioners, age group representatives, policy consultants and policy makers to support exchange of ideas and experiences across existing fragmentations and therefore to contribute and to encourage new, innovative and alternative learning pathways of (adult) education. This dialogue should develop into sustainable professional and non-professional Communities of Practice. Examples of inter-generational eLearning covered by the project include the following: Tandems and e-Twinning of younger and older professionals through Social Software in the automobile industry, banking sector, handicraft enterprises, and Sixty Plus Intergenerational Projects. EAGLE is testing pedagogic and e-Learning methods to support intergenerational learning including the development, verification and validation of the ‘EAGLE Toolkit for Intergenerational Activities’ in ‘real life’ intergenerational learning settings. More specifically the impact of EAGLE will be: - Insight into the potential and the limitations of intergenerational learning; - Insight the policies, concepts, frameworks in place and empirical evidence available; - Insight into the models of good (and less successful) practices; - Multidimensional analysis of ‘what works with whom under which circumstances’; - Formulation of policy and practice recommendations; - Piloting and validating a set of intergenerational ‘learning sets’ and a ‘practical toolkit’ for practitioners; - Supporting the exchange of ideas and experiences of learning between the generations; - Creating professional dialogue between researchers, developers, practitioners, age group representatives, policy consultants and policy makers; - Encouraging innovative and alternative learning pathways of Lifelong and Life-wide Learning; - Supporting the intergenerational contract in private and professional lives of European citizens.

Return on investment

Return on investment: Not applicable / Not available

Track record of sharing

Presentation of EAGLE in 12 national and international conferences e.g. EDEN Annual Conference 2007 & 2008; International Intergenerational Conference of CIP; eTwinning Conference; ECER 2008; ISA Forum of Sociology 2008; continuous involvement in national and international as well as offline and online (i.e. through the EAGLE portal) networking and exchange practices.

Lessons learnt

Lesson 1 - The multidimensional policy and practice analysis of EAGLE demonstrates that the benefits of intergenerational learning are many, such as: uniting segregated generations and building better understanding; encouraging active citizenship and social participation, and encouraging cross-generational working. Lesson 2 - The positive effects of intergenerational learning are partly counterbalanced by possible ‘pitfalls’, which should be addressed when setting up intergenerational activities: the traps of ‘Homogeneous Groups', of ‘Life Worlds’, of different ‘Identities’, of different ‘Pedagogies’, of different ‘Values’, of different ‘Perceptions & Cognitive Processing’, of Sustainability and the trap of ‘One-size-fits-all’ Solution.

Scope: International