Blended Adult Learning for the Social-ecological Transition
Blended Adult learning for the Social-ecological Transition (BLAST) is a project run by the transnational Transformative Education Community of Practice formed by members of ECOLISE and other partners. The project is funded by the Erasmus+ strategic partnerships programme and started in October 2019. It focuses on the enhancement of transformative learning across Europe.
The project's activities aim at bringing about massive personal and community-led change over time by supporting people to engage actively in the Socio-ecological transition in response to the Sustainable Development Goals, the Paris Climate Agreement and related goals. The BLAST strategy involves
- Providing a context for adult educators to improve their competences in delivering blended transformative learning for civic engagement.
- Increasing reach and improving access, quality, attractiveness and coordination of educational delivery of transformative adult education initiatives across Europe that are supporting the social-ecological transition.
- Identifying, pooling, encouraging and spreading related social and educational innovations.
- Exploiting results of other related EU projects.
The core team consists of 15 people, most of them coming from the formal BLAST partners.
- Formal BLAST partners
- ECOLISE (lead), Belgium
- Asociatia Romania in Tranzitie, Romania
- Col·lectiu Eco-Actiu / Ulex Project, Catalunya, Spain
- Croatian Permaculture, Croatia
- Gaia Education, Scotland
- GEN - Global Ecovillage Network, Scotland
- IfGIC - Institute for Global Integral Competence, Germany
- Permaculture Association Britain / IPEN - International Permaculture Education Network
- IPTL - International Partnership for Transformative Learning @ Visionautik Akademie, Germany
- Sustainable Ireland / Cultivate, Ireland
The BLAST project is designed to enable adult educators to provide needs-based educational opportunities to citizens, communities and professionals that engage as change-makers in the socialecological transition. For adult educators it is a challenge to work with learners focused on changemaking action in their local context. It requires providing demand-driven opportunities for learning and reflection on the right topic at the right moment at the right place to ensure receptiveness and continued engagement of those adult learners. Professionals will be trained in training-of-trainers events, who then will train multipliers, who in turn will reach thousands of beneficiaries with offline and online activities.
Relevant terms used or created in the BLAST project will be explained here.
- Blended learning
Blended Learning for the Social-ecological transition combines experiential place-based learning through immersion in change-making practices in intergenerational local initiatives with online opportunities for exchange and peer learning in geographically distributed intercultural Communities of practice CoP. Blended learning is arising as a powerful approach to extend the reach, facilitate access, improve learner motivation, enhance flexibility, and synergise otherwise disconnected learning opportunities. It also combines "high tech" and "high touch", i.e. access enabled by digital tools to the most suitable resource persons, the best knowledge and the most advanced practices available at the transnational level, and the conviviality of personal encounters and joint face-to-face work in local community settings. Blended learning can overcome the disadvantages of face-to-face and online learning for achieving Transformative Learning.
- Transformative learning
Transformative Learning is focused on adult learning, particularly in the context of post-secondary education (e.g. higher education, professional training, private learners, etc). It uses e.g. experience-based learning, dialogic tools, reflective journaling, and other exercises to change the learner´s world view and understanding of self in it, facilitating skills such as creativity, self-direction and intellectual autonomy.
- Community of Practice (CoP)
Communities of practice are groups of like-minded people, who provide regular mutual support. Members of those groups share knowledge and practices among peers in a domain of joint interest on an ongoing basis and according to arising needs.