The Association of Austrian Adult Education Centres (Verband Österreichischer Volkshochschulen - VOEV) is a national non-profit organisation representing the 270 adult education centres in Austria. VOEV plays a coordinating role between educational policy work and pedagogical work, and acts as a service institution for its members, the regional associations. VOEV is an active partner in all activities concerning adult education policies and practices and in the Austrian Lifelong Learning strategy.
VOEV is a leading organisation in the umbrella organisation Austrian Conference on Adult Education and contributes to the co-ordination of the Austrian adult education sector. From 2014 to 2016 the Secretary General of VOEV is the president of the Austrian Conference on Adult Education and is responsible for negotiating with the ministry of education the 3 years contracts which form the core of the structural funding of non-formal and not for profit adult education institutions in Austria. VOEV is linked to European and international organisations and is a member of the European Association for the Education of Adults (EAEA).
VOEV holds the certificate of quality assurance LQW (Lernerorientierte Qualität in der Weiterbildung) and is certified by Ö-Cert, the Austrian system for recognition of adult education organisations.
The tasks of VOEV are
- Partner in educational policy
- Networking and coordination work for regional associations
- Participation in a variety of national and international projects
- Educational research and statistics
- Scholarly examination of socio-political, historical, pedagogical and didactic developments
- International representation
- Proposal and organisation of discussion processes
- Fundraising and allocation of subsidies
- Continuing education of managing and teaching staff
- Dissemination work
- Publishing of “Die Österreichische Volkshochschule” (The Austrian Adult Education Centre) magazine
- Granting of awards and honours
- Organising and hosting events
The Educational Work of Adult Education Centres (Volkshochschulen)
Adult education centres are the largest continuing education institutions in Austria with around half a million course participants in around 47,000 courses and seminars. The first adult education centres in Austria were founded in 1885. So we can look back on a really long tradition of adult learning. At present there are 272 centres, which means that there is always one nearby. The Association of Austrian Adult Education Centres (VÖV) was created in 1950 as the umbrella organisation.
The educational offer ranges from different course formats, lectures and training courses to study trips to exhibitions and e-learning courses. The spectrum of work includes up to 50 different languages, numerous health and exercise offers for every age group, second-chance education as well as professional, political, social and cultural education and science communication. The offer is based on current needs and interests. It incorporates the latest pedagogical and scholarly findings, is quality assured and increasingly meets European standards.