Going back to the past and recalling the specific atmosphere of those years, what were the challenges that you wanted to address through the eLearning programme?
The overall objective of the eLearning programme was to "support and develop further the effective use of ICT in European education and training systems", which should constitute a crucial factor of "their adaptation to the needs of the knowledge society in a lifelong learning context". Under this framework, the programme addressed essentially the contribution of ICT in lifelong learning through the promotion of digital literacy, in particular for those with poor or no access to the technologies, the promotion of virtual mobility in higher education, the support to a Europe wide school networking scheme, including the training of teachers, and the dissemination, promotion and transfer of good and innovative practices of ICT use in education and training.
As underlying dimensions we can mention the contribution of ICT to strengthen social cohesion, to enhance the European dimension in education and to support the development of innovative teaching methods.
What do you think was particularly successful about the programme?
Although the programme was in general quite successful and cost-effective, I would put a very special emphasis on eTwinning, which is still a major ongoing European initiative in the field of school networking, supporting the exchange of innovative teaching methods and contributing to students' virtual mobility and teachers' professional development.The programme also successfully enhanced the European dimension in education and promoted co-operation between stakeholders in e-learning, for example in the fields of quality and open resources.
What are the most important lessons learnt?
The design and successful implementation of eTwinning, including the effectiveness of its funding model, demonstrates the potential of ICT to support innovative learning experiences, which would not be possible otherwise. It also shows the importance of integrating ICT in a coherent pedagogical project addressing clear needs and with the allocation of appropriate content and technical resources.
What are in your view the main challenges for the future of ICT in learning?
In my opinion the main challenge now is the full integration of ICT in education and training, both as a learning aid and a subject, implying the rethinking of organisation, curricula, teacher training and school infrastructure.
A particular effort should also be put in ensuring access to all, which would contribute to create the conditions favourable to increase participation in lifelong learning.Access the DOSSIER: eLearning programme 2000 - 2006: The Legacy to learn more about the eLearning programme