ICT learning in home care: carers as learning mediators

Several projects are aiming to improve the care of older people involving both carers and older people. However in projects like ACTION or DISCOVER the training is solely dedicated to carers considered as an intermediary in the development of competences. The ACTION  project provides carers information about ICT services, especially using videophones with older people and caregivers. In the DISCOVER  project carers learn to use mobile devices and digital technologies to become mentors of their care recipients.

The successful learning of digital skills is based on the continuity of trustful relationships between care workers and care recipients which constitutes a fertile ground to acquire new skills. Cooperative learning between older people and care workers enriches daily life through sharing ideas news and problems thus through this inter-generational activity participants develop social relationships. It enlarges the world of each member of the process and leads to discover a third world: the digital one.

The cooperative learning process in social care needs to be appropriately prepared. The organisation that organises this learning process should start with a specific study of needs and wishes of the participants. The thesis “Supporting family caregivers through educational training and information services from an empowerment perspective” highlights indeed the necessary integration of the needs of the carers in the design and development of a specific training and recommends their early involvement in this process. In this way the organisers will insure efficient meaningful and enjoyable participation of the carers and their clients in the learning process.

The concept of cooperative training invites us to trust and train carers considering the needs of each member of their successful relationship with older people.


  • Hanson E., Magnusson L. (2005). Supporting frail older people and their family carers at home using information and communication technology: cost analysis. 51(6):645-57.
  • Moressi M. (2010) Supporting family caregivers through educational training and information services from an empowerment perspective: A literature review.
  • http://www.actioncaring.se
  • http://www.digitalbirmingham.co.uk/projects/digital-skills-for-carers
  • http://theseus.fi/bitstream/handle/10024/21246/Moressi_Milena.pdf?sequence=1
  • http://www.discover4carers.eu/?q=about_discover_project

Author: Laure Lhermet

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