The UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL) is building a number of partners’ capacities in participatory and collaborative action research in the field of literacy and basic skills. UIL is working with higher education institutions, training institutions for adult educators, youth-oriented civil society organizations, and government ministries with a mandate for youth and adult literacy. Action research benefits people at all levels of the learning and educational process, as it integrates the research process and findings with measures to improve the quality of learning programmes and activities. Action research has the potential to empower youth and adult learners as well as educators, and can ultimately contribute to the creation of democratic and equitable societies. Current UIL activities using action research include:
- Action research in multilingual contexts: UIL is collaborating with training institutions in several countries to support the training of educators in participatory and collaborative action research and to promote youth and adult learning and education based on a multilingual and multicultural ethos.
- Action research in assessment and monitoring – RAMAA (Action Research: Measuring Literacy Programme Participants’ Learning Outcomes): This project aims to develop national capacities for evaluating learning outcomes, and to provide policymakers and development partners with reliable, contextualized data about the quality of youth and adult literacy programmes. UIL is collaborating on the research with university researchers and doctoral students in the countries involved.
- Youth-led action research: This project centres on identifying and practising innovative strategies responding to the learning needs and aspirations of young women in vulnerable situations in India, Indonesia and the Philippines. UIL is collaborating on the project with the Asia South Pacific Association for Basic and Adult Education (ASPBAE).