Unesco IIEP Project on Flexible Learning Pathways in Higher education

In 2019–2021, UNESCO IIEP conducts a research project on Flexible learning pathways in higher education. UNESCO IIEP has invited Finland to participate in the project. The project aims to identify policies, instruments and practices that support flexible learning pathways, to analyse how effective these policies and instruments are and how they are reflected in higher education institutions’ practices.

The study comprises of a global baseline study and comparative case studies including Chile, England, Finland, India, Jamaica, Malaysia, Morocco and South Africa.

The project is based for instance on the UNESCO Education 2030 Agenda calling for future higher education systems, which promote lifelong learning and flexible learning pathways for all students with variouos backgrounds.

For the country case study data collection, two case higher education institutions were selected in Finland: one university and one university of applied sciences.

Flexible learning pathways are studied from three perspectives:

  1. Access to higher education, including student admissions systems and alternative pathways
  2. Flexible learning pathways during higher education studies
  3. Pathways supporting completion and transition to labour market.

In addition, each participating country has chosen 3-4 focal areas of strategic relevance.

Finland’s focal areas are:

  • Flexibility in admissions and recognition of prior learning (RPL)
  • Transfer and mobility within and between institutions and programmes
  • Student guidance and counselling, including personal study plans (PSPs)
  • Combining work and higher education studies, including studification of work.

The reseach data, collected in autumn 2019, consists of the following:

  1. Sample-based interviews with national level actors and representatives of the case HEIs’ staff, students and alumni
  2. National statistics on flexible learning pathways
  3. Related research reports and other data supporting the analysis

National team

Finland’s case study data collection and reporting will be conducted by:

  • Finnish Education Evaluation Centre (FINEEC): Sirpa Moitus and
  • Finnish Institute for Educational Research (FIER) at the University of Jyväskylä: Leasa Weimer in co-operation with FIER’s researchers.

Final report

  • Finland’s case study report will be published in FINEEC’s publication series in June 2020.
  • Unesco IIEP will publish a synthesis report comparing the results drawn from the case studies, a series of policy-briefs and thematic reports in 2020-2021.

UNESCO IIEP publications

For more information:

  • Sirpa Moitus, puh. 029 533 5518, etunimi.sukunimi@karvi.fi