Adult education provider
Kingsway Campus, Old Glamis Road, DD3 8LE – Dundee
Organisations from six countries examined the challenges faced by disadvantaged learners and the benefits of using mentoring practice to engage and retain them in learning. The partners’ work led to the development of new systems and procedures as part of a more formalised mentoring framework. This was achieved by identifying effective approaches to mentoring and putting together pedagogical materials, in collaboration with both disadvantaged learners and their mentors. This project successfully developed the use of mentoring as a tool to enhance disadvantaged adults’ experience of learning, thereby significantly increasing retention rates among this vulnerable target group. There were meaningful impacts on the learners, as their involvement empowered them, increased their self-esteem and skills and ultimately enhanced their career prospects. The project demonstrated that given the right tools and confidence, disadvantaged individuals can take control of their own educational pathways, and be empowered to maximise their potential. There is much potential for sustainability as the innovative guidance materials can be distributed and used by other adult education institutions working with learners at risk of social exclusion to support the promotion of mentoring in their organisations.