Professional Training of Teachers in Biological
and Agricultural Sciences for Rural Areas

01 November 2001 - 31 January 2005
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Project Description
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The project is aimed at establishing a low cost distance-learning system as a means to provide equal opportunities to the unemployed and uninstructed young people and women who live in the rural area and are disadvantaged both with respect to training and on the labour market. According to the official statistical data, there are 380,000 unemployed young women in the Romanian rural area. They belong to the main target group, as well as the unqualified young labour force on the whole. The secondary target group consists of high-school students and generally women living in the rural area.

The main objectives of the project are to provide vocational consulting, vocational training and guidance on the labour market of the young people and women living in the rural area. At the same time, it is aimed at developing trans-national contacts and collaboration with all the partners involved in the project (training centres, universities, school inspectorates, schools).

Objectives of the project: Improvement of skills and competencies particularly of the young people involved in initial vocational training; the unemployed rural young people and women shall be trained as teachers of Biology and Agricultural Sciences for rural and vocational schools. The qualitative improvement of permanent vocational training shall be achieved by the qualitative improvement of the didactic process in rural and vocational schools, and by the higher qualification of the teaching staff.

The specific results which are expected are the following:
•  Drawing up of the Curriculum with a view to the training of teachers of Biology and Agricultural Sciences.
•  Adaptation of the Curriculum to the distance-learning system.
•  Organisation of the training process: schedule; modules and subjects; selection and training of the teaching staff; preparation of the didactic materials; setting up (by additional funding from other sources) of specific laboratories for subjects that require practical training and cannot be taught by distance learning only (Chemistry, Biology, Agricultural Sciences, etc.).
•  Identification of a representative agricultural unit for practical training, where the students can acquire practical experience and specific skills.
•  Creation of a school network for pedagogic training.
•  Creation of a Website for students and those interested who have access to the Internet; those who have no Internet facilities will have access to information at the regional/tutorial centres.
•  Editing and multiplication of printed materials, CD-ROM, audio and video tapes.
•  Check-up of module efficiency by inquiries and surveys.
•  W orkshops with the participation of national and international partners.

The project is destined to young people from the rural areas which have particular social and economic features. Therefore, it facilitates the access to vocational training of those groups disadvantaged on the labour market. At the same time, the proposed distance-learning form of training is the most adequate for the young people with low income.

The partners of the project are the following:
•  Agricultural University of Plovdiv - Bulgaria;
•  Eastern Europe Centre, University of Hohenheim - Germany;
•  University Foundation CERA for Agricultural and Rural Development - Romania;
•  University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine of Bucharest, Agriculture Faculty - Romania;
•  Scholar Inspectorate of Giurgiu County - Romania;
•  General School Daita, Giurgiu County - Romania;
•  University of Maribor, Faculty of Agriculture - Slovenia;
•  University of Greenwich, Natural Resources Institute - United Kingdom.