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EPALE discussion: digital skills as a way of accessing learning opportunities

As part of our April-June 2020 focus on Digital skills as a way of accessing learning opportunities, EPALE is organising an online discussion.

EPALE Online Discussion Digital Skills.


As part of our April-June 2020 focus on Digital skills as a way of accessing learning opportunities, EPALE is organising an online discussion.

The large number of adults with poor basic digital skills represents a major obstacle in achieving an inclusive society and reducing social inequalities. Too few adults have access to adult learning resources, and this has a real impact on their personal development and employment prospects.

Providing adult-specific teaching methods to help trainers to become more effective in their work requires specialised training and continuous professional development geared towards adult-specific teaching strategies.

Moreover, the Covid-19 pandemic has forced everyone to adapt to new ways of working and pushed adult educators to explore and adopt new online tools and techniques to allow them continue their training and learning activities.  

The discussion will take place on this page on 27 May between 10:00 and 16:00 CET and will be moderated by EPALE Thematic Coordinator Altheo Valentini and by EPALE Content Assistant Claudia D'Eramo.

► Share your stories, tips, case studies and good practices with the EPALE community!

Also, if you’ve ever been involved in successful projects, or if you have developed any relevant methodologies – share your story with the other participants in the comments below!

The discussion on 27 May will include the following topics:

  • digital inclusion
  • barriers to digital access
  • distance learning
  • how to reshape adult education at the times of Covid-19

► Comments will be open on 20 May so participants can introduce themselves or post their comments in advance.

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Pieaugušo izglītībā digitālo prasmju apguvei jābūt prioritātei cilvēkiem, kuriem šīs prasmes ir vājas. Mainoties darba videi, arī Covid krīzes laikā, un pieaugot interneta nozīmei, nepieciešams paaugstināt  konkurētspēju darba tirgū. Šobrīd arvien lielāka nozīme ir digitālajām prasmēm, jo tās paver plašākas darba un karjeras iespējas. Jāmotivē cilvēkus apgūt šīs prasmes. Šobrīd  digitālās prasmes ir pieprasītas visās nozarēs,jo tas ļauj strādāt ātrāk un ērtāk. 

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Reading all these contributions made me reflect about the importance of empowering adults to become more conversant with the digital dimension.  During the current pandemic, when schools closed the doors for health reasons, it clearly emerged the divide among adults who had a good command of digital tools and those who did not even had the basic skills.  It was really challenging to ensure equity in terms of the teaching and learning process, but this has highlighted the need to focus on the parents' digital competence to be able to support their children at home in case of a future lockdown.  
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Thank you for this contribution James.The pandemic made few unsolved issues arise, along with the urgent need to bridge the gap of digital skills among the adult population. Just as you said. These challenging times will, hopefully, let us re-think lots of fields.
Adult education is a key point to overcome many outstanding issues.
Best,Claudia (EPALE moderator)
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Un’esperienza interessante di apprendimento a distanza si sta concludendo a Barga, per UNITRE. Mentre gli altri corsi, per forza di cose, sono stati serrati per il confinamento coronavirus, Adulti Ancora A Scuola ha predisposto con rapidità gli strumenti per proseguire gli apprendimenti on line per i corsisti di Informatica Base UNITRE_Barga. Molti particolari si possono ricavare dal sito Un anno formativo straordinario è giunto alla fine. Abbiamo fatto quello che nessuno, neppure noi ci saremmo sognati di fare. Ne siamo contenti, ed anche un po’ fieri. ADULTI ANCORA A SCUOLA ( abbiamo affrontato la crisi del coronavirus rafforzando le nostre conoscenze (know-how) imperterriti e attivi nello studio anche in situazione di confinamento. Lo abbiamo fatto in grande autonomia e in autogestione, abbiamo appreso molto, ma molti nostri pari li abbiamo persi per strada. La prospettiva dovrebbe essere, sarà, quella di recuperarli e di cercare collaborazioni ed aiuti affinché la esperienza di Adulti Ancora A Scuola per Informatica di Unitre_Barga possa essere accolta e sviluppata nelle nuove possibilità che il settembre del “dopo” coronavirus renderà fruibili. 
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It has been really interesting to read all your contributions today and we hope that you will continue sharing good practices, concerns and wishes for a better and wider accessibility of learning opportunities in adult education. 
In fact, as many of you have underlined, the COVID-19 lockdown has evidenced all the positive and negative aspects of distance learning, definitely opening the floor for the co-design and experimentation of new educational approaches and inclusion strategies. 
We will continue posting blogs and news on this topic until the end of June and we would be more than happy to receive your additional contributions under the form of Community stories
As regards the EPALE online discussions, the next appointment will be on the “Future of Adult Learning” and we will inform you on due time about the exact date. 
Thank you! 
Altheo and Claudia from the EPALE CSS
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I would have thought that there was a whole field of possibilities for adult education centres to offer digital skills for retired people. There is such a lot of new tools and possibilities that younger people take for granted but the elderly do not use, simply because they do not know how. 
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Hello Dóra,
maybe this EPALE community story from Finland is interesting for you.Juhani Pörtfors and Matti Sarviranta have given ICT guidance to seniors by organizing weekly support meetings in their city.These meetings could no longer be held as usual because older people had to go to quarantine.
The two then launched the support for the seniors via Skype.It is a very interesting report because the two tell us how they reached the seniors.It was also shown that the isolation of the elderly was at least somewhat broken by these digital activities.You are now much more interested in digital opportunities than before.
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Hi Dora,
Your post is really interesting and I agree with you that the elderly who lack digital skills might find it difficult to venture in new digital experiences out of their own personal initiative.  On the other hand these people have a lot of experience in life and I think that they make better use of certain tools once they have mastered the know how, something which as you pointed out the younger generation take for granted.  
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Hi guys, I am an educator and a member of the Czech EPALE team. Just a brief reflection of what i percieve is happening right now regarding digital inclusion - or rather exclusion. Yesterday I had the possibility to talk to representatives of Czech parents who were dealing with the need of taking care of their children during the lockdown. It seems that those adults with fine digital competences and good internet connection recorded a step forward both in mastering higher levels of their competences but also in social inclusion with their counterparts, schools and mainly with their own families via online. The others - adults with limited digital competences and generally lower education and lower economical status have recorded quite the opposite. The were not able to establish the online facilites for their kids and themselves. It seems the lockdown has caused a substantial gap between the two groups. I believe this has been the case of many more EU countries...?
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Yes, i quite share your sentiment. The digital divide is real, and covid-19 has made that very clear. Education cannot in itself be the solution to this complex challenge, but it can, and should definitely play an important role!
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I agree with you the current pandemic has highlighted the crucial role digital competences play in contemporary society.  We all experienced the effects of the digital divide among parents who could not support their children during the school lockdown to engage in online learning.  This was specifically evident among students who are at the lower classes of primary education.  We need to learn from this experience and specifically focus on upskilling the digital skills of adults to empower them to become autonomous in using technology.
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In the beginning of this year, according to “Digital 2020: Portugal: global digital insights”, Portugal presented 83% of penetration of internet and about seven millions of users (6,6% more than in April 2019). In regard to the percentage of the population with mobile connections, Portugal was included in the study with 155%, which means that there are more connections than population, due to the fact that many people have more than one mobile phone. Despite the existence of this technological investment, Portugal has shown a weak performance concerning the domain of digital skills. The government programme Portugal INCoDe2030 revealed (data from 2016) that the percentage of individuals with basic digital skills or more than basic skills was only 47% (the EU average was 56%). However, we believe the COVID-19 outbreak accelerated the domain of digital skills, because suddenly people had no choice to interact and to contact with their families, to deal with health and social programmes and all the governmental structures created programmes to help people to deal with this new situation using new technologies. Adult learner providers and Qualifica Centres (Centres that assure recognition and certification of adult prior learning) reshaped their methodologies and used new technologies to guarantee that adults could keep learning and get their certification. Government agencies have also made many tutorials and tools available to help education and training professionals readjust their practices to the new reality of coronavirus. Adult education is likely to change in the future and adults will be able to benefit from new opportunities for distance education that are more inclusive and more adjusted to the reality of adult life, avoiding travel or even providing learning at times compatible with their professional and family life.  
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Hello Benjamin,
Thank you for sharing your post on VR in education. Its importance will certainly grow in the near future.I know various dedicated (secondary) school learning applications and professional learning apps. Do you know where to find information on learning applications in other areas like adult learners and senior citizens?  And can you provide a reference to the capabilities and applications of the VR platform you use?  
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Letonya Üniversitesi'nde bir erasmus öğrencisi olarak derslerimi uzaktan takip ediyorum. Eğitim sistemini e-öğrenmeye dönüştürmek okulum için yeni ya da zor bir şey değildi. Zaten bir sistem '' e-çalışmaları '' vardı. Oradaki tüm malzemeleri görebilir ve kolayca çalışabilirsiniz. Ayrıca, MS ekipleri ile çalışıyorlar, bu çok yardımcı oluyor. Öğretmenlerim bunu kullanmakta iyi ve sorunumuz yok. İyi gidiyor. Bazen internet bağlantısı problemim olabilir, ancak öğretmenlerim benim için iyi çözümler buluyor. Bu sorunu halledebiliriz.
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Dear all, 
 I am a university teacher and an adult education teacher. I would like to contribute to the discussion, because I perceive that people around me, whether in working age or in the 60+ age group, have a fear and aversion to the use of digital technologies. They feel stressed that they can't do something, they go wrong and they depend on the help of younger people. The circumstances surrounding the pandemic have raised the issue of digital literacy urgently and without time to prepare. Many professions and professions (not only teachers) rely on virtual reality and distance forms of education, communication and online meetings. Even though we live in the age of informatization and digitization, reality has shown that we are not sufficiently armed with digital skills, and I perceive great reservations in this area. These relate not only to the ability to be digitally skilled, but also to the material equipment and availability of internet networks for disadvantaged social groups and people from peripheral areas of the region where internet coverage is still lacking. I consider it essential to create a space for the education of adults and people of retirement age in the field of digital skills. It might be a good idea to initiate the need to set up a platform / grant scheme within European funds that would offer not only training in the field, but also advice and support.  
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Dear Erika,For your information, a project funded by Erasmus + that may be of interest to you :DENTA: Discovering European Neighbours Third Age.If the main theme of the project is not specifically related to digital skills, the engineering of the project necessarily addresses it, particularly through cultural and social development aspects. It is led by Germany: University of Oulme.
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Dear Erika,
I agree with you that the pandemic has highlighted the need to focus on the upskilling the digital competences among adult learners and the urgency to reduce the digital divide.  As time passes, we are becoming heavily reliant on technology even for the simple day to day tasks.  So from an early age we have to work with students to make the shift from consumers to creators when using digital technology.  By the time these students will grow up, they would have gained enough experience to use technology more frequently and more responsibly hence maybe reducing the digital divide.
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Dear all,
I would like to share with you the experience me and my colleagues are currently having in one of the European project we implement and in particular to focus your attention on the use of open-source tools for adult education. Open-AE is an Erasmus+ project aimed at promoting access and learning through open educational resources (OER); promoting Open Source (OS) technologies in the non-formal educational sector to support the upskilling of adult educators and learners; addressing adult trainers working in the non-formal educational sector to reinforce digital skills and competences.
Among the activities foreseen by Open-AE, the implementation of a training course addressed to adult educators aimed at improving their skills and knowledge of technological tools and digital learning platforms is one of the key results.
Centro Studi di Foligno, the Italian partner of the project, in order to face the difficulties related to the Covid-19 health emergency, has designed a course entirely online (Moodle Course and Webinars) to introduce and deepen innovative practices and the latest available technologies useful for adult education. The online course, lasting a total of two months, is addressed to adult professionals interested in deepening their knowledge and tools necessary to promote free and open education and training. The distance learning course organized by CSF has registered a strong interest throughout the Italian territory.
In our vision, open source is applied to a way wider field than mere software development. It has to do with open educational resources, collaborative methodologies, and bottom-up approaches. We believe that in these difficult days, the open and common education promoted by Open-AE can be the best response for the innovation of the educational sector and a fruitful investment for public and private organizations.
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That's a very interesting and very necessary project. There is a large amount of useful Information and support for teaching professionals (in the form of OER) already out there. The difficulty is to find it and then use it in an appropriate way. 
Open Source Software is an excellent example of how we can enhance something through sharing (and actually at high Quality) - there is still much work to be done in Terms of Building trust in OS-Tools and their use and Usability.
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Dear all, greetings from Slovakia.
I want to share with you our good experience from Slovakia - IT Fitness Test, which has already the 9-year tradition. The IT Fitness Test is the largest and most extensive testing of IT skills in Slovakia. It is a part of the European Commission´s initiative „Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition“, which is coordinated by the Digital Coalition-National Coalition for digital skills and occupations in Slovakia. The IT Fitness Test is supported by the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sports of the Slovakia Republic and the main partner of the test this year is Huawei Technologies Slovakia. 
Students, teachers and adult population can take part in the test. Over 10 000 respondents have taken the test, with an average success rate of 63%. The test consist of the practical questions aimed at solving IT-specific problems. The goal is not testing theoretical IT knowledge. In order for the respondent to answer the question, he or she must choose a suitable digital tool, application or Internet search for the answer online. The test takes into consideration the current pandemic situation, and it has shown more intensive use of online tools.
The IT fitness Test project was awarded by the EC in 2014 for a comprehensive and innovative approach to increasing the digital literacy of young people of Europe. The test is in the Slovak language, you can check the here,…;
Kind regards, 
Monika/NSS Slovakia  
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Hi everyone, movies are a consistently overlooked resource in language learning. With record numbers of people now joining Netflix,Amazon Prime, etc, isn't it time we incorporated this existing 100 year old technology into learning? I'm an English teacher based in Germany. For almost 10 years, I've used feature length movies as the central component on my language course. I send students weekly homework 6 days in advance of a movie screening. The homework contains a plot summary, list of characters, key dialogue, 30 word gap fill exercise, idiom/phrasal verb exercises, background information, and any available youtube links containing interviews with the director,stars,etc. On average, students spend over 125 mins on homework every week. Before the current lockdown we met weekly to check homework, watch the movie and discuss it later in pairs. Now, we meet via Zoom (to check homework in pairs) watch the movie (Netflix/Amazon) before meeting up again via Zoom to discuss the movie in pairs. In my experience, the best use of online learning is to create courses that bled both aspects Online (individual learning) and Physical (group learning) Frank Mc Girr
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One of system support for helping teachers in Serbia to adapt to working in new online environment comes in the form of online trainings developed by the Institute for the Advancement of Education and Upbringing (IAEU) of the Republic of Serbia.
For three years now, they have been developing a platform through which educators can attend online trainings designed with the aim of preparing them to work better with students. This proved to be very useful during the state of emergency caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. 
More information on this can be found on the following link:…;
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Hi Ilze,
Sorry for the late response. It's my first time using this forum.
I have a library of DVDs dating back to the 1940s. I discovered early on that in order to access this wonderful resource I needed to also teach film appreciation-I don't mean academically, but in a way that helps learners appreciate the craft of movie making. I begin each term with a lesson that illuminates a specific area. I normally follow that the following week with a film related to that specific element. For example; last term we started with a 90 minute lesson on script writing. The following week we watched "Adaptation"a 2002 comedy-drama directed by Spike Jonze and written by Charlie Kaufman. The film is based both on Susan Orlean's 1998 nonfiction book The Orchid Thief and Kaufman's experience attempting to adapt the book into a screenplay while suffering from writer's block. Another example was using Martin Scorsese's film "Hugo" to hightlight how movies first began, and that many of the techniques still used to tell stories visually where actually invented by Georges Méliès in the 1890s. I'm consistently surprised by how much my adult students love this aspect of the course.(learning about film as apposed to language-although the lesson is in English) I think it has helped challenged their perception of how a language course can be.Frank
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Hi  I'm finding the discussion so far really interesting.  From my experience of taking part in online training in the past and engaging in meetings and learning activities during lock down I'm interested to know your thoughts about the extent to which tutors can respond to the needs of individual learners in an online situation.  I feel that it is difficult for tutors because they have to prepare the content in advance and can't divert from their plan as easily s they can face to face.  Also it is easier for a learner who is struggling to understand or is not engaged to switch off (maybe literally) or to escape the tutor's notice in an online situation.
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Hi Cath,

Good questions. I think to some extent it depends on how the online sessions are structured and facilitated. For example, are the sessions interactive? Are participants expected to keep their video on, or are they expected to take part in the online chat, where questions can be posed. In our sessions, we build in interactive activities, so participants also link in and provide reflections, or complete tasks using a Padlet before the webinar resumes. Best regards,


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Right you are: "staff development is a key to effective use of digital learning".  And of course you also need a fear-free working atmosphere, because not everything works right away in digital education.Sometimes a learning method is not accepted by participants and sometimes it hampers with technology, which is stressful for teachers and learners.
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Hello, Cath,for me as a tutor, the two things you describe are the big challenges. I have been involved in digital education (but also teaching face-to-face courses) for a long time and I always come back to it.1. Digital education requires a lot of planning and preparation, especially when working asynchronously on learning platforms. It is difficult to deviate from the plan, because this quickly confuses the structure of the learning content and you cannot immediately adapt this structure (because everything is written and fixed). If you spontaneously deviate from the plan, you will confuse many learners. For example, if I say: "Some learners want to work on topic C. right at the beginning and not tomorrow because it is especially important for them - so let's do it this way", then others lack the structure. In face-to-face courses I can change the sequence of the topics very quickly and orally present and establish the connections again and again. 2. Learners are sometimes less involved because they are not always addressed directly (in asynchronous learning).  Over the course of time, I have developed a whole range of possibilities to reintegrate these learners. I ask (via chat or in forums) many open questions that anyone can answer and I send mails when someone hardly participates and ask the learners why they hardly participate at all. I also try to include small challenges that have nothing to do with the content of the course. These are challenges as we know them from Facebook or Instagram: photos of your life, your favorite object at home ... I do this because I have experienced that these side issues lead to a better involvement of the learners (even those who have difficulties understanding). Such small, more private and funny actions, in my opinion, shorten the distance that many learners have to struggle with.
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I am in the last week of my Erasmus semester in Latvia and regarding to the outbreak of COVID 19 we had to switch to distance learnning. In addition to that I am finishing my Erasmus semester from home via the internet, very strange times nowadys! The distance learning was very good-organised in Latvia and within two weeks we had all of our courses via MS-Teams that was very practical because we didn`t need to compensate our presence with additional tasks. However distance learning was quite a challenge because it was quite difficult to stay focus all the time, because you have so many aspects in your flat that catches your attention. In addition to that it was sometimes hard to motivate yourself for all the indepent work you have to do. I really missed the "normal" environment, being with other students and seing the professor and being part of a different culture!
The learning process was more different than the years before because we had to adjust our learning to this new situations and I think that every university should think about a concept regarding distance learning so that students have a solide learning process and a good learning outcome. I am very satisfied with my learning process and with the distance learning our university did in Latvia.
Our professors in Latvia were very dedicated and made their online courses very interesting, additionally to that, they also made me feel very comfortable and I always had the feeling that they care what I did and how I was in this pandemic. This leads me to the result that the teacher has, as always in the learning process, a very important role and helps the student to stay motivated and to succeed in their learning!!
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Hey everyone!
I´m an Austrian Erasmus student (teacher training)  who has been studying in Riga at University of Latvia for this semester. The current Situation required to fly home to Austria and I´ve continued my studies via distance learning of my Latvian host University.
I can tell that this has worked without any problems.  Most of the teachers did their very best to conduct online meetings every week which was a good opportunity to understand learning contents better and to ask questions. Obviously, this would never replace face-to-face meetings in the future but in this situation it helps to maintain structure and to keep in proper touch with the teachers and the class/seminar-group mates. 
I could imagine having such online meetings not as a replacement of face-to-face lectures/Seminars but maybe as a supplement for urgent questions rather than clarifying everything via email. 
I really hope that we can go back to face-to-face meetings very soon as I´m missing the personal interaction with my group-mates a lot !
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How to transform adult education in Covid-19 times?
Latvian libraries experience May, 2020. If you look at library social networks or websites, the "upcoming events" section says "no upcoming events." Libraries in Latvia are one of the centers of adult education, therefore, the usual events as  computer training for seniors, various events of non-formal adult education programs - lectures, master classes, off-site sessions do not take place at the moment.
This (adult education transformation) could be the next issue after the partial access to library funds currently performed by Latvian libraries. 
Starting from May 14, 2020, the possibility to exchange books, magazines and CD / DVD was renewed in Valmiera Integrated Library, Latvia. For security reasons, free access to bookshelves, press reading room, computer reading room,  etc. not yet updated. At the moment, we are starting to think very carefully about organizing events, including full-time adult education events. Just thinking.  
But while we think, the library still invites the townspeople to try the remote services of Valmiera Integrated Library, which can be done by filling in the FORM (downloadable Word document) and sending it to library e-mail. If possible, they can sign it with a secure electronic signature. If the e-signature is not currently available to the client, then he / she will be able to confirm his / her identity on the first visit to the library. After receiving the completed questionnaire, we register the client as a library user and send the authorization data for registration in the e-book library and instructions for accessing e-books. 
From this description you can see that it requires quite high digital skills. For this we offer remote consultations. And this is an intensive time to learn digital skills.
Even today the library user are able to use all the remote services of the Valmiera Integrated Library. Its are many. And at this point, I would like to say that, thanks to the emergency situation, the average digital skills in society as a whole have dramatically improved. Current offers of the library:
Everything is in the attitude: either you squat and get out of the pit, or raise your hands and lie on the bottom. We get creative and are back to our library users
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Dear Anita,
thank you very much for your contribution to this EPALE online discussion!
Indeed, many libraries all around Europe have a great potential in becoming reference points for the development of digital skills in adult learning. The BIBLIO project ( is now investigating on the training needs of actual and future librarians to become real factor of change in fastening the capacity of local (and especially rural) communities to actively respond to the challanges of digital transformation.
As you can see in the "Authors" section of the website, the project includes also Latvian partners and it would be nice if you could get in contact with them to explore opportunities for collaboration.
Best regards
Altheo, EPALE Moderator
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In order to strengthen the public opinion that digital skills are very important in the future labor market, we in Latvia, in cooperation with EPALE regional coordinators, created an article on the set of digital skills, which is definitely needed. Here it is:… (sorry, but in latvian language)
 Our opinion and experience is - it works very effectively when experts in the field (those who people in the regions trust) express their views on topical issues to the general public.  
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Unifying the theory and practice of tomorrow The initiative originated as a necessity to reflect the current state of the education environment and to directly foster ability of graduates to succeed in the labour market of today. At the same time, with unforeseeable future of technological progress in mind, it is necessary to change the paradigm of the educational process so as to guide the children towards the basic skills and attitudes. Namely, creativity, emotional intelligence, analytical thinking, development of thinking with active learning, decision making, judgement, communication skills, leadership, cultural intelligence, technological skills, and the ability to accept change. In order to achieve such a major change, these basic preconditions are to be met: 1) accessibility of technologies both for the children and the teachers, 2) methodology uncovering basic logics of creation of ideas and concepts and their use in efficient tasks for the students, 3) teacher staff ready to adapt their attitude towards the education centred on close cross-curricular collaboration, and 4) rationalisation of relation diagrams in environment of the involved authorities, i. e. ministries, school founders, employers organisations, and schools themselves. Presently, we are at the first point, in the stage of “levelling out the technological inequality”. By this we mean a process, where a school suggests creation of a partnership with a leasing company that can provide service of the following type: providing hardware according to the parameters required by the school, insurance, service and internet connection. It is inevitable that the service pack is without the need of initial down payment and its payment would be due 48 or 36 months. By this, we shall have a relatively favourable height of monthly installment, which in case of direction towards children should be (negotiation process is underway) covered by the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Family and that in the range 25-75% of monthly installment, exceptionally 100 percent. The reason is that with this measure we want to involve parents in more intensive communication with the school and increase their interest in the quality education of their child. In the case of a teacher, the logical step is to request a salary supplement from the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport (negotiation process in progress), as a laptop is a basic work tool in the education process and the teacher should receive 100% monthly payment. For easier communication, we have set the name "digital contribution". The procedure of the whole step is very simple, the school determines the minimum hardware requirements according to the most demanding software tool, which it informs to those interested in studying with a recommendation. The parents of the children can decide whether to provide the facilities in their own way or to use the set service for this purpose.
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Dear all, greetings from Serbia. I wanted to mention that EPALE NSS Serbia continues to provide support to adult education sector in Serbia, this time by organising online training entitled “Development of digital competencies and use of ICT tools in working with adult learners” that is taking place this week. 
Besides introducing them to the digital competence framework, participants have the opportunity to find out about most common ICT tools and their use in teaching. Based on the feedback, we can say that their experience in using ICT tools is very different - some of them don’t know anything about this, while others are very proficient and have a lot of experience in this subject. 
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Hi Uroš,
during the epidemic of coronavirus we all find out how important are digital skills! As you already mentioned, level of digital skills is very different from adult educator to adult educator and also from learner to learner. We have to have in mind that both sides are important! 
You have mentioned that you are organizing trainings for AE in Serbia - is it possible to join you at these activities or they are meant to be available for specific groups only?
Kind regards from Slovenia,
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Dear Maruša,
the training is composed of 3 webinars and 2 practical assignments.
First webinar was held on Monday, and you can view its recording on the following link:
Second webinar is taking place today at 3pm, and you are very welcome to join us. Please use the following link:
Third webinar will take place on Friday at 1pm and I'll send you the access link in due time.
For the purpose of this training we use collaborative space entitled "EPALE online obuka "Razvoj digitalnih kompetencija i upotreba IKT alata u radu sa odraslim polaznicima"", you can find it via Community of Practice search option.
Best regards,
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Hi there! I am an Austrian Erasmus Student who has been spending the last few months in Riga, Latvia. Due to the Coronavirus situation it was no longer an option for me to stay, so I flew back home to Austria.Despite the fact that I am home already, I am still registered as an Erasmus student at the University of Latvia and I have continued to attend all the online lectures and seminars. At first it was quite a werid situation to adapt to, but since the student platform as well as the University coordinators have always provided good and decent information, it wasn't difficult at all to switch to online courses.However - and I assume I am not alone when I say this - I do prefer face-to-face communication and human interaction, especially because I am studying to become a teacher and in this field I can't imagine working and interacting with my students only online.
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Hi, my name is Arndís Harpa and I am a study- and career counselor at the Center for Lifelong Learning in Suðurnes (MSS), Iceland. I am also a project manager at the „Elementary School“, which is a study program for adults who did not complete primary school. It gives them the opportunity to start their studies again. This is a very sensitive group and requires great restraint. Therefore, Covid was not the best choice for the group. The most inportant goal of the „Elementary School“ is to ensure day-to-day functioning and that while assignments and other things are not much, it is an important part of the program to follow instructions and follow rules. When we had to send the whole group home, at the end of March, we decided to continue to follow them closely. We did it with all the methods we could use and had to go far beyond the comfort circle in technical skills.  We talked to the group every morning at 8:15 am, through Facebook-live and urged them along with telling them about the day's agenda and what was ahead. We taught through Zoom, Skipe and Teams. We used E-mail and facebook-messages for communication, and last but not least, we called each student three to four times during the period 3/26 - 5/4 when the assembly ban ended in Iceland. We are very proud to say that all 23 students returned to school and completed their studies.Next Friday, 5/29, we will graduate them from the „Elementary School“ and most of them will continue their studies. Everyone is active and has the confidence to deal with studi and work of the future. 
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Hello from Iceland. 
We in MSS (lifelong learning center) have been dealing with “Covid” situations as you all. We have put our school online as much as possible. Digital skills from the students are very important in achieving an inclusive society and reducing social inequalities. Our experience is that many unemployed immigrants (especially the eldery people) lack these skills to boost their lives and work. We have had students who have very little digital knowledge in being very proficient. We have groups with low digital skills to promote them with the use of smartphones and computers. We have seen how important this knowledge is to overcome difficult situations. Our teachers have good digital skills and were very positive. We were able to adapt the technology and take care of each group. We always have to empower the students in critical thinking all the way.
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This pandemic has clearly highlighted the need to use digital technologies in all sectors of the community.  I agree some cohorts may find it difficult to adapt to this new scenario but as adult educators we must motivate and create the right opportunities to ensure equity and equal opportunities to learn among all members of society.  

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I think that one of the most valuable lessons we learn from the current situation is the value of the human contact. But we are also rapidly exploring new, additional ways of engaging in online education. Activities that were never expected to be able to carry out online are now forced to be exercised online. One of the possible gains of this period could be that education will be differently accessible for students and learners who, for whichever reason, cannot attend physical classes. They will not fall behind for missing out, but they will be able to find all classes and sources online. Institutes are also finding alternative ways to assess students skills. What are your thoughts about this? Do you think that online education will be leading to a more inclusive environment, enabling those who cannot physically attend to participate? I am curious to hear which aspects of online education will/should remain and which ones won't. 
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