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Latest events
25 October 2020

Our 16 pilot projects - briefly presented

Read here short presentations of our 16 pilot projects - basic education offers tailor-made for…
26 August 2020

Multiplier Event Online - for Germany and Austria

A multiplier event for MobileBE will be held - in German language - on 26 August 2020. This is an…
15 July 2020

See our European picture book

A spin-off product of the MobileBE project is a picture book with a collection of artist's…
Pilot courses in video
A group of local residents visits a Viennese neighbourhood, with a course participant as their tour guide

Vienna (Austria)

Show me your neighbourhood Developing basic skills through being a tour guide…
MobileBE Videos Stills Bulgaria 1

Lovech (Bulgaria)

Education for everyone Computer training in rural Bulgaria In the village of…
MobileBE Videos Stills ItalyGroup4 1

Torino (Italy)

Being able to actively participate in society Basic education to get ready for…
Galina Lang, the German-Bulgarian teacher, speaks about the educational needs of her course participants

Hannover (Germany)

Welcome to Hannover Language Training as a Vehicle for Literacy About 6000…
Farmer Karl sitting on a hay heap in his rural environment

Mellendorf (Germany)

Farmer Karl Literacy training for adults on the countryside In Mellendorf, a…
Classroom with course participants in Västeras, Sweden

Västeras (Sweden)

I want to study for a nurseMotivational course for further studies, with focus…
Assitant nurses discuss problems of work process documenation

Göttingen (Germany)

Care for others – and yourself A basic education course for assistant nurses In…
Miguel is a retired wine grower. Now he learns using a tablet computer.

Cariñena (Spain)

Mobile phones, computers, tablets You are never too old to learn Cariñena is a…
Related Projects


Basic skills and mobility: the two issues at the heart of the MobileBE project

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Article on MobileBE by Flavia Lucidi, INFREP, published on 30.1.2018 on EPALE

Available also in French, German, Romanian

The alarming illiteracy statistics in Europe

According to the latest statistics provided by the European Commission, nearly 75 million European adults lack the basic skills needed to play an active role within society. In France, for example, the ANLCI (National Agency for the Struggle Against Illiteracy) believes that 7% of the adult population aged between 18 and 65 is in a situation of illiteracy; that is, 2,500,000 people. In the face of this alarming fact, Europe is dealing with the issue by supporting the Member States' activities in the fight against illiteracy.

MobileBE: a project focused on basic education, co-financed by the Erasmus+ programme

The development of key skills figures among the priorities of the Erasmus+ programme, the European Commission's flagship programme in the field of education, training, youth and sport, whose budget for the year 2018 amounts to nearly 2,500 million euros.

The MobileBE project (Mobile Basic Education for adults), coordinated by the Hanover Volkshochshule in partnership with other European structures, will be implemented over a period of three years in the context of this programme. Infrep, the Professional Training Institution of the League of Education, is taking part in this project through two of its agencies: Cherbourg-Cotentin and Carpentras.

Launched in October 2017, this project benefits from European co-financing of almost 400,000 euros. It aims to extend basic training to adults who, because of their specific circumstances (single parents, shift workers, family caregivers, people with health problems or those living in remote areas and/or rural areas, etc), cannot follow conventional training courses which take place at a specific time and place.

New training methods for the less mobile publics

In order to meet the needs of these publics, the MobileBE project's objective is to develop alternative and bespoke training methods, which can also (but not necessarily) include remote or e-learning training courses.

Sixteen new training methods will be developed by the eight structures which partner the project, namely:

  • VHS Hanover (Germany) - project coordinator
  • Wiener VHS (Austria)
  • CPEPA Ricardo Sola Almau Cariñena/Zaragoza (Spain)
  • Zdruzenie Znanie Loveč (Bulgaria)
  • Infrep (France)
  • Consorzio OPEN (Italy)
  • VHS Göttingen (Germany)
  • Västerås folkhögskola (Sweden)

Each new training method should facilitate the target public's access to training and strengthen participants' motivation, to allow an initial analysis of their needs as well as the validation of their acquired skills.

The sixteen methods will then be tested and documented during the pilot projects.


A close partnership, taking strength from its differences and its similarities

"The strength of the MobileBE partnership lies both in the diversity of the partner organisations, with their national contexts and the specific problems they are facing, and in their similarities - in terms of aims and objectives - which favours the interchange of experiences and results," says Christian Geiselmann (Volkshochshule Hanover).

The meeting to launch the project, which took place in Vienna in October 2017, enabled the partners to agree on its general implementation framework, and to launch its first phase: a collection of good practices; and a thorough analysis of the needs of their target publics.

A broad approach to basic education

At this launch meeting, the partners learned to know one another, discussed the concept of 'Basic Education for the Less Mobile Adults' and developed it, in particular by adopting a broader approach to basic education which combines linguistic, mathematical and digital skills with behavioural and social skills: "We agreed that the fundamental goal of basic education is to allow people to participate adequately within society. This has to be reflected by a broader vision of training in the basic skills," observed Christian Geiselmann.

Two Infrep agencies involved in the project

Following this meeting, the Infrep agencies in Cherbourg-Cotentin and Carpentras defined the publics at which they wish to aim in their pilot initiatives: for the Cherbourg Agency, this will be low-skilled employees and job seekers living in rural areas or cities of less than 10,000 inhabitants; the Carpentras agency will focus on isolated women with dependent children, and on agricultural workers.

The MobileBE project website will soon be online. In the meantime, further information and any news on the project's development may be had from the following addresses: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (link sends e-mail) (coordinator) ; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (link sends e-mail) (Infrep manager of the European project)

Translation (French - English) : EPALE France

Is “Learning Offer” a good term for a modern form of what once was called a “course”?

This is a blog post from Stackechange (English language usage). MobileBE coordinator Christian Geiselmann asked for better ways to express what in MobileBE we so far called a "method". 

"I am in search of an adequate term for something in the area of education. Dictionaries and various online resources have not helped so far. Here is the thing I need a word for:

Context: In adult education there are various forms to organise teaching or respectively learning. Traditionally, adult education providers have "courses" or "classes". However, modern pedagogy (or andragogy) tries to avoid terms like "teacher" and "teaching", because there is a general tendency in the field to reduce the role of the "teacher" and to give as much emphasis as possible to the role of the "learner". The "teacher" in that context is seen rather as a facilitator to help others (i.e. the learners) to engage in a learning process (ideally with each other), e.g. by providing a favourable environment (place, time, materials, atmosphere, etc.)

Accordingly, traditional terms such as "course" or "class" are not suitable anymore. More appropriate seem to be expressions such as "learning offer", "learning arrangement", "learning setup" or "learning format". (In German the terms Lernangebot and Lernarrangement or Lernformat are common amongst adult education professionals, although not really amongst the wider public).

My concrete problem: I need a way to speak of such "learning offers" to my international (European) adult education colleagues in an multinational project we are carrying out at the moment. The project is about developing new - yes - "learning offers", "learning formats", or how ever you want to call it. "Classes" or "courses" would be too much implying traditional forms of teaching, and our project is exactly about the opposite thing: helping people to engage in learning activities themselves and actively.

So I could easily use "learning offer" as a very general term. But on the other hand I do not want to coin terms myself; rather I would like to use a term that is established in the English speaking world (amongst professionals) without sounding too weird to the general public. So, the term should be both acceptable for experts, and self-explanatory for those who see it the first time.

A sample sentence would be:

As everybody in our team is currently preparing their two pilot projects to test new learning offers, please find included a list of all new learning offers we so far have created.

What do you recommend?

So far I have been calling these things methods, but methods is such an unspecific notion (that can mean everything) that I always run into problems with it."

For answers by native speakers of English see the article in Stackexchange (where it was eventually closed because people found the issue "predominantly opinion based", but via this link it is still accessible)

Answers by native speakers in the forum:

1) ScottM writes:

That's news to me. My wife is an associate professor at a US university, and she still calls them "courses". Is this perhaps a regional thing? – ScottM Jul 2 '18 at 20:45

@ScottM In a university context I find the term "courses" still adequate because the form of doing it (with an dominant role of the teacher, or professor, who will e.g. be responsible for giving input) is usually relatively "traditional". - But still you may be right. The concepts I laid out above are common in Europe, but anyway predominantly with adult education professionals; at university, they would not be so present in Europe either. – Christian Geiselmann Jul 2 '18 at 20:52

2) Hot Licks writes:

"Learning offer" sounds like a scam to me. If you want a generic term I'd use "educational opportunity". – Hot Licks Jul 2 '18 at 21:15

@HotLicks - Yes, exactly such opinions of native speakers I was looking for. "Educational opportunity" is a term I will seriously consider. Problem perhaps, for practical purposes it is bit long... a shorter term would be better. – Christian Geiselmann Jul 2 '18 at 21:33

3) Jason Bassford writes:

Unless somebody actually has a glossary of "modern pedagogy" terminology, there is no definitive answer than anybody can give. I would say refer to the same sources that told you not to use the word "teacher." If that source doesn't say to not to use "course," then you're making a false assumption. – Jason Bassford Jul 2 '18 at 22:43

@JasonBassford Unfortunately there is no particular source that tells me to not use the word "teacher" for that kind of "learning facilitator". It is common understanding in my profession. Modern adult education uses a lot of other tools than only gathering people in a room and telling them something they then write down in notebooks. There are learning situations where no "teacher" is present at all. People learn in a self-organised way. Such a situation can hardly be called a "course" (or can it?). I am looking for term that covers all situations but is still is self-explanatory. – Christian Geiselmann Jul 3 '18 at 10:48

4) Robbie Goodwin writes:

Christian Geiselmann, and you seem to be giving a lot of credence to people who for some reason want to re-invent the wheel. When you see a difference between "Learning Offers" and "courses' can you explain it… or why you want capital "L… O…"? Of course there's a different between "teachers" and "learning facilitators" and don't you think, for instance, "tutors" covers both? Of course everything you describe, and much more, can be part of "a course…" that's largely the meaning and history of the term "course" as opposed to "class" or "lecture", or what have you. I hope you stick with the wheel – Robbie Goodwin Jul 3 '18 at 22:44

@RobbieGoodwin Thanks for the advice. I appreciate it. In my explanations I was trying to outline the state of use of terminology, in my European/German environment in the admittedly somewhat peculiar area of adult education theory. I can ensure you that "teacher" and "tutor" are terms generally avoided when referring to that specific type of activity. - As for my "learning offers" (capital or small letters, I don't care) I see that you recommend taking "course" anyway. Which might be a solution indeed. I will consider it. – Christian Geiselmann Jul 4 '18 at 12:26

5) Robbie Goodwin writes:

Christian, please first accept that your English is many times better than my schrecklich Deutsch. That doesn’t justify any of what you ask about. If you want anyone to believe you, can you provide some justification in English or German or any other language, please? – Robbie Goodwin Jul 4 '18 at 22:28

@RobbieGoodwin Okay, I will accept the challenge. Just to understand what you actually want to see: Is it proof (by way of academic quotation) that "teacher/Lehrer" and "course/Kurs" are terms that in the context of academic discours on methods of adult education recently tend to be avoided, at least in German, or perhaps also in English? – Christian Geiselmann Jul 5 '18 at 15:42

6) Robbie Goodwin writes:

@Christian Geiselmann That almost sounds fun but it would mean extended discussion, which you’d have to take to Chat… Doesn’t the universality of this page’s disbelief show you that the topic might belong on a specialist site dedicated to either English-German or restricted educational jargon, but not to normal English Language Usage? If it helps, I first came across the idea of reducing the role of the "teacher" to emphasise that of the "learner" in 1971 when already, its exponents had dug themselves so far into a specialised hole, they couldn’t see over the rim. – Robbie Goodwin Jul 5 '18 at 17:56

@RobbieGoodwin You are right in thinking that this question would better be asked in an expert forum of educationalists. I simply have not found such a forum. It must anyway be also a forum of native speakers of English, because the inconsistent, erratic, bound to traditions in other languages use of notions in trans-European communication (using bad English as lingua franca) is where my question actually started. – Christian Geiselmann Jul 8 '18 at 19:13

7) Robbie Goodwin writes:

@Christian Geiselmann, please accept two things. There is no possibility of any native speaker failing to understand you but equally, you will not be mistaken for a native speaker. If you really can't find a specialist education forum then how can you also maintain anything about specialist educational practice? – Robbie Goodwin Jul 9 '18 at 0:49

Piloting in Göttingen (Germany)


Gundula Laudin, Volkshochschule Göttingen Osterode

Piloting in Cariñena (Spain)


Saray Baquedano, Centro Público de Educación de Adultos, Cariñena/Zaragoza


Piloting in Torino (Italy)


Claudia Ducange, Fondacione Casa di Carità, Torino


Piloting in Loveč (Bulgaria)


Svilen Andreev, Združenie “Znanie”, Loveč

Piloting in Västerås (Sweden)


Jazmin Petersson, Västerås folkhögskola, Sweden

Piloting in Hannover (Germany)


Christian Geiselmann, Volkshochschule Hannover (Germany)

Piloting in Cherbourg (France)


Sébastien Dubost, INFREP, Cherbourg, France

(Institut National de Formation et de Recherche sur l'Education Permanente)

Piloting in Vienna (Austria)


Herbert Depner, Die Wiener Volkshochschulen (Austria)

Test our logo!

Dear reader,

Since learning is a life-long process, we want to take the opportunity to assess the usability of our project logo.

Please visit this link


and take part in the test. You get for five seconds a picture displayed, and then you get asked a simple multiple choice question. The entire test will take you 20 seconds. You do not need to enter any personal data.

Thank you!

Pre-print edition of the picture book available


A pre-print edition of the European Picture Book for Basic Education, created as part of MobileBE, is available on this webiste.

Pilot projects presented briefly

Piloting in Cherbourg (France)

Sébastien Dubost, INFREP, Cherbourg, France (Institut National de Formation et de Recherche sur…

Piloting in Torino (Italy)

Claudia Ducange, Fondacione Casa di Carità, Torino

Piloting in Göttingen (Germany)

Gundula Laudin, Volkshochschule Göttingen Osterode

Piloting in Västerås (Sweden)

Jazmin Petersson, Västerås folkhögskola, Sweden

Piloting in Loveč (Bulgaria)

Svilen Andreev, Združenie “Znanie”, Loveč

Piloting in Hannover (Germany)

Christian Geiselmann, Volkshochschule Hannover (Germany)

Piloting in Cariñena (Spain)

Saray Baquedano, Centro Público de Educación de Adultos, Cariñena/Zaragoza

Piloting in Vienna (Austria)

Herbert Depner, Die Wiener Volkshochschulen (Austria)

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