Ruth Kerr Valentina Reda

Open education for lifelong learning and public sector professional development: The case of Federica WebLearning language Moocs



In the context of a rapidly changing workplace, there is a need for significant investment in up and re-skilling on the part of the European workforce to guarantee future competitiveness. One of the sectors that has received closer attention is that of the public administration (Pa), also in view of the need to strengthen and enhance the skills portfolio within the Pa as an integral part of the broader intent to guarantee the country’s future success. Language skills are an important component of this new skills portfolio, with two objectives: improve multilingualism for integration, and enhance individual competitiveness, earning power, and work opportunities. The Centre for digital learning at the University of Naples Federico II has responded with a Mooc-based initiative in a bid to provide structured, flexible, sustainable and scalable language training as a coordinated and long-term solution to skills development for the lifelong learner sector. The 13 courses currently forming the language portfolio have been designed for general audiences and the Pa sector, in a stackable format, to maximize the scalability and impact. More than 37,000 lifelong learners and 6,000 public sector professionals have benefited from the initiative, with encouraging results in terms of satisfaction and replicability of the production, management and delivery model. The paper aims to introduce the project, present the first results and discuss the challenges and opportunities of a coordinated action for a workforce enhancement strategy.


  • Language Moocs
  • Open Education
  • Skills Development
  • Lifelong Learning
  • Public Administration


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