Title: Effective Writers & Communicators

Akronym: EWC

Financial Agreement no.: 2013-3264/001-001

Project no.: 540346-LLP-1-2013-1-GR-LEONARDO DA VINCI-LNW

Much needed soft skills like professional writing and communication in English are missing from Europe, particularly from its young SME workers and entrepreneurs. This is a commonly agreed shortfall and obstacle for SMEs’ international competitiveness and youth’s professional mobility in globalized labour markets. Based on the partnership’s own extensive experience and a preliminary review of existing practices in business writing and communication internationally, it seems that most available courses today are unaffordable, highly fragmented (too small in size; too narrow in content; too short in length) and hardly accessible to young professionals. There is therefore a great need for affordable vocational training programs in business writing and communication in English, which are suitable to young SME employee and entrepreneur needs, as well as relevant to internationalised market dynamics in which professionals are required to operate today.

The project is offering a brand new, highly innovative ICT based solution to writing and communication skill development for young SME employees and entrepreneurs in Europe, which is affordable, easily accessible, and suitable to target group needs. It is doing so first by merging together educational content on logical thinking and argument structuring, business writing and communication, grant application and entrepreneurial skill development including social networking, and vocational English language learning. Second, its e-learning structure is a method highly suitable to SMEs, as it is flexible and can be adapted to different work schedules and paces of learning. Third, it is a blended learning solution, a combination of offline and online self-learning and self-assessment, which is a stepping stone towards a new way of promoting learning-to-learn competencies in skills development, as already experienced by different education systems in Europe, and given that such new models of assessment in Europe only emerge slowly. Fourth, the combination of this style of learning with opportunities to network and visit abroad can prove very fulfilling and very rewarding both for SME managers and for the employees.

Project Objectives:

  1. To identify current trends and practices, as well as SME requirements and young worker/entrepreneur needs in Europe, for training and skills development in business writing and communication in English
  2. To develop and pilot a novel blended learning programme in business writing and communication in English, tailored for young SME workers and entrepreneurs in Europe
  3. To develop and disseminate training instructions, guidelines and strategic recommendations for SMEs, HEI and VET providers and educators, social partners and training organisations that want to incorporate the training course on business writing and communication in English within their formal curricula, competence development and appraisal practices
  4. To establish a social networking platform that increases visibility at European level of skills in business writing and communication in English obtained by young SME employees and entrepreneurs, encouraging international mobility of profiles and ideas for business and project proposal collaborations