E-Qualified : An in-Depth Investigation of an Innovative Post-Graduate Program at a Greek University

Wednesday, 13 July 2016: 14:15
Location: Hörsaal 47 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Dionysios GOUVIAS, Department of Pre-School Education and Educational Design, University of the Aegean, Rhodes, Greece
Marios VRYONIDES, School of Arts and Education Sciences, European University of Cyprus, Cyprus
In the definition of learning strategic objectives in recent educational legislation in Greece, it is claimed that a successful implementation of ‘lifelong learning’ strategies will contribute, on the  one hand, to increasing employability, economic growth, social inclusion and adaptation of skills, and to fulfilling  individual needs  and  aspirations, on the other. Among the most significant consequences of these LLL strategies was the proliferation of postgraduate study programmes across the Greek Higher Education Institutes (HEIs) in the last decade.

In our paper we will attempt to investigate the extent to which the above goals of graduates from  an innovative  postgraduate study program at a Greek University --offered through distance learning-- are satisfied. We will focus on the main factors that prompted these individuals to follow post-graduate studies, their evaluation of the specific programme, their views on the way post-graduate programmes operate in Greece, as well as their attitudes towards LLL in general. Additionally, we will highlight any potential correlations between these views, evaluations and attitudes, on one hand, and personal characteristics (age, gender, occupation, personal income etc.) or family characteristics (parental education) on the other.

The data that will be presented come from an empirical investigation that adopted a mixed method approach, which took the form of on-line self-completed questionnaires from a representative sample from a pool of graduates, over a period of ten years, supplemented by personal interviews and group discussions with a selected number of past and recent graduates.

The findings of this investigation are expected to have policy implications that relate to the effectiveness of post-graduate programmes and the expected benefits that they bestow to people who aspire to gain such credentials or have their skills upgraded and, thus, expect to have more secure employment prospects and/or more potential in advancing their working careers.