Vision, technology and education for social purpose

WEA Tutors and volunteers from across the Yorkshire and Humber region got together in York on Saturday. It was hot and sunny outside with the city looking its beautiful best, but people were soon involved in discussions that aligned with the WEA’s vision of being challenging and inspiring.

Deep in discussion

Deep in discussion

The day’s key themes were:

  • Education for social purpose – making the WEA’s vision and mission a reality
  • Equality and diversity
  • Using technology – Twitter, blogging and using iPads in learning
  • Quality of teaching, learning and assessment

Noise levels are often a good indicator of engagement in events. One tutor said she knew she was in the right venue as she was approaching because she could hear the animated discussion before she came into the building. Certainly the sign language interpreters were kept very busy during the day.

Kay Sidebottom demystified Twitter

Kay Sidebottom demystified Twitter

There was a lot of interest in the region’s new tutor blog as Sarah Holland launched it at the event. The blog provides an online space for tutors to share ideas, resources and good practice. Sarah and the blog’s moderators will add tabs for more subject areas as people add content.

You can find, follow and contribute to the blog at

Deep in discussion

Deep in discussion

Events like this get-together are taking place across the country and are very important for a dispersed organisation like the WEA – not least to remind ourselves collectively about how we translate our shared vision into everyday practice in a climate of increasing inequality and technological change.

The WEA’s Vision is: “A better world, equal, democratic and just; through adult education the WEA challenges and inspires individuals, communities and society”.
The day sparked several suggestions for practical action. It was encouraging to hear the positive ideas that tutors, volunteers and other colleagues generated and I’m looking forward to people’s responses our new online Social Purpose module for tutors.

About Ann Walker
Adult education and lifelong learning specialist and campaigner. LinkedIn:

2 Responses to Vision, technology and education for social purpose

  1. Fabulous, Ann. I’d heard from Kay that it was a really positive day. Wonderful that people got together to talk explicitly about social purpose education. And the sun shone! 🙂

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