Adult education and training comprises education and training leading to a degree or certificate, liberal adult education, staff development and other training provided or purchased by employers. It also includes labour market training, which is mainly targeted at unemployed people.
Adult education is available in general upper secondary schools for adults, vocational institutions and vocational adult training centres. For evaluation of these institutions offering secondary education, see Chapter 11.1. Also universities and universities of applied sciences (UAS) offer adult education. For evaluation of higher education institutions, see Chapter 11.2.
Liberal adult education is available in adult education centres, folk high schools, summer universities, study centres and sports institutes. The Act on Liberal Adult Education (in Finnish) requires institutions offering liberal adult education to carry out self-evaluations. They must also participate in external evaluations. These external evaluations are mainly carried out by Finnish Education Evaluation Centre (FINEEC). Main results of the evaluations must be published.
Liberal adult education organisations are independently responsible for the education they provide and its development.
The body responsible for external evaluations considering liberal adult education is FINEEC. The aim is to support the development of education and improve the preconditions of learning. The organisation of FINEEC and its relationship with the central government is explained in Chapter 11.2.
Approaches and methods for quality assurance
There are no national directives regarding the methods of internal evaluation.
In external evaluations the activities of institutions providing liberal adult education are evaluated with thematic and system evaluations.
In external evaluations attention is directed towards:
- the duty and role of liberal adult education as a form of adult education;
- the ability to promote equality and accessibility;
- the functioning of the steering system of adult education centres;
- the development of the educational institute structure;
- the network of liberal adult education;
- the development of the service capabilities;
- the ability to perform statutory responsibilities;
- the volume of activities;
- target groups of activities.