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E-mentorship for lifelong learning
Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Lifelong learning/Encell.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4248-0634
2019 (English)In: INTED 2019 Proceedings, 2019, p. 9750-9759Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

It has long been known that mentorship programs can provide both vocational and psycho-social support and development opportunities for program participants. Mentorship has proven itself to be a superior way to learn ‘on the job’, as this education and training are based on problem-oriented learning relevant for the specific work setting. It has been reported that traditional educational approaches with a fixed curriculum are not efficient when it comes to meeting an organizations’ needs and that it might be difficult, or even impossible, to apply what one has learned when one returns to one’s workplace. Problem-oriented learning that takes place at the workplace, as an alternative to traditional courses, has many advantages; for example, such learning can be linked to everyday tasks. The digitalization of mentorship can benefit from knowledge that has been developed within traditional mentorship programs, and in particular the structure of a program. At the same time, technological development can allow for the introduction of new and innovative ways of working with lifelong learning in organizations. This paper addresses the potential benefits from e-mentorship for workplace learning. E-mentorship and mentorship systems have been studied before but not to a large extent. Based on the continuous development of digital tools and the digitalization of work practices, there is a need to understand if and when these tools can contribute to strengthening mentorship aimed at workplace learning. A model for strategic mentorship that was developed to assist mentorship in the foundry industry is presented: Strategic Mentorship for Inclusion, Learning, and Equality (SMILE). The model is discussed in relation to three advantages with e-mentorship: (i) flexibility in time and space, (ii) variety of learning formats and, (iii) access to global expertise. The general conclusion is that since the model covers several aspects of inclusion in working life, with respect to the individual’s whole life-situation, e-mentorship may not be the most functional approach. Since psycho-social support is central in the model, in-person mentorship is preferred since this kind of mentorship tends to be more interactive. When it comes to online learning and e-mentorship, there are several tools that support interactivity, but they still have limitations compared to the physical meeting. The model also comprises several different areas which makes the mentorship more complex than just discussing a single task or problem. E-mentorship can however be a very good complement when there is need for flexibility in time and space, variety of learning formats and, access to global expertise. Finally, the organizational support from managers, in terms of structure and resources, determines what can be done. The provision of education to build competencies in mentorship as well as ICT skills are other aspects to include if there is a need to work strategically with mentorship and e-mentorship.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. p. 9750-9759
Series
INTED Proceedings, ISSN 2340-1079
Keywords [en]
Mentorship, e-mentorship, mentorship program, online learning.
National Category
Learning
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-43401DOI: 10.21125/inted.2019.2425ISBN: 978-84-09-08619-1 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-43401DiVA, id: diva2:1301278
Conference
INTED 2019, 13th International Technology, Education and Development Conference, 11th - 13th of March, 2019, Valencia, Spain
Available from: 2019-04-01 Created: 2019-04-01 Last updated: 2019-04-10Bibliographically approved

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Bjursell, Cecilia

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
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  • Other locale
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Output format
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  • asciidoc
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