Title ROUTES 4 - Mentor-supported E-Learning in rural areas
Project Number 2010-1-ES1-LEO05-20971
Project Type Transfer of Innovation
Marketing Text Support the development of innovative practices in the field of vocational education and training, the development of innovative ICT-based services, and contributing to improve equal opportunities for access to lifelong learning
1) Presential adult and vocational training in areas with dispersed population such as rural areas is time consuming, unflexible, and expensive because the teacher has to travel or stay for longer periods. The complete range of E-learning including interactive elements, audiovisual, etc. is a solution. But it faces the problem of mid- and long term motivation and participation of the population that is not used to study "on their own" without human interaction. As a result, most initiatives fail because the participants abandon the training activity or achieve only low results.
2) Tackling this problem is the aim behind the "Mentor-"methodology. The Mentor is NOT a tutor or teacher: his/her task is motivate, explain doubts at a "plain" level, maintain cohesion of the learning group and in general, the human contact with the students at local level. He/she thus takes the role of a human interface between the distant teaching institution (school, rural tourism association, etc.) and the participants. The original ROUTES 1 project applied the mentor methodology for traditional learning. The objective of this project was to update and extend this methodology to the conditions of full E-Learning in rural areas: tasks and qualification are very different to the previous situation.
ROUTES 4 looked at four aims:
A. define the needs of training for mentors in an E-Learning environment. This took into consideration different realities for distance- or internet-based learning in Andalusia, Estonia, Latvia, and Bulgaria.
B. create training materials for future mentors and students
C. test the outcome on five local training activities, based on existing courses or on modules from Routes 1 or 2
D. project website in all partner languages for general information. WEB 2.0 to create a virtual community for mentor supported E-learning was established by language areas through existing platforms (LinkedIn, Facebook)
3) The consortium covers the full range of real situations and possible application of the Mentor Methodology. It included an official vocational training institution, private entities involved in vocational training at different levels some of them with operative E-learning platforms, and a network of public internet access points interested in training their staff as mentors.
4) Outcomes included a need analysis for qualifications of mentors in E-learning invironment; teaching materials for the training of mentors; guidelines for adaptation of existing courses to match with the mentor support; a Handbook about introducing mentor support in E-learning; a project website in all partner languages, complemented by language-bound use of LinkedIn and Facebook as virtual community platforms for the mentor topic; an international workshop; and the proposal for a formal vocational qualification as mentor.
5) Considerable improvement of the viability of ICT-based learning in rural areas, bridging the cultural and psychological gap that is a clear constraint for success at this moment.
The project is a Transfer of Innovation action based on the results of previous LLP projects ROUTES1 and ROUTES2. The final objective was to support the development of innovative practices in the field of vocational education and training other the tertiary level (LEO-OpObj-3), and to support the development of innovative ICT-based services, pedagogies and practice for lifelong learning (LEO-OpObj-6)
The project extended the concept of “mentor supported learning” to the environment of E-learning, with special attention to the technical, human, and logistic difficulties of E-learning in rural areas. Thus, its results contribute to improve equal opportunities for access to lifelong learning.
Access for disadvantaged
Open and distance learning
Other Service Activities
Accommodation and Food Service Activities
Professional, Scientific and Technical Activities
Information and Communication
Administrative and Support Service Activities
description of new occupation profiles
open and distance learning
Product information The project extends the concept of “mentor supported learning” to the environment of E-learning, with special attention to the technical, human, and logistic difficulties of E-learning in rural areas.