Centre for Educational Research and Innovation - CERI

"Symposium on Measuring the Social Outcomes of Learning (SOL)" (Copenhagen, Denmark 23-24 March, 2006)


Symposium on Measuring the Social Outcomes of Learning

March 23 to Friday March 24 2006

Danish University of Education, Copenhagen, Denmark

Experts and delegates from 12 countries met in Copenhagen to discuss the impact of education on health and on social and civic engagement.   The meeting was generously hosted by the Danish Pedagogical University.  The main part of the meeting focused on two major papers. 

The first, by Professor David Campbell of the University of Notre Dame (US),  looks at the links between level of education and how far people take part in various forms of civic activity:  as voters, members of voluntary associations and so on.  A particular focus is whether education has an absolute effect (ie the more education you have the more likely you are to vote) or a relative one (ie the educational effect comes from its impact on your place in the social hierarchy).

The second, by Dr Leon Feinstein and colleagues from the Centre for Research on the Wider Benefits of Learning at the University of London, looks at the impact of education on health.  It covers a huge range of health outcomes, from depression to smoking to obesity.  That there are links between education and good health is evident, but the precise ways in which the impact occurs requires careful analysis.

Both these papers, together with responses to them and national reports from Norway and Austria will be published on the CERI site later this year.

The other focus of the meeting was on how we might develop indicators for gathering international data on these issues. 

Further work on this is now under way.


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