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Start date: Sep 1, 2016, End date: Aug 31, 2019 PROJECT  FINISHED 

In our modern society technological advances in photography have made the medium more ubiquitous and accessible to all. The project PICS (Photography Increases Creative-thinking Skills) aims at helping adult people get the most out of their camera, providing experts who can help them understand the fundamentals, get familiar with all the functions and achieve better results. Participatory photography places the medium of the camera into the hands of learners to democratize the image-making dynamic and give them the power to show and speak their own realities. The partnership deals with pedagogical issues, stressing the importance of a non-formal, learner-centered learning approach through the lens of a camera, the visual pedagogy, based on two techniques, Auto-Photography and Photo-Elicitation. Auto-photography offers researchers a way to let participants speak for themselves, in auto-photography participants take photographs, choosing images and representations of themselves; while photo-elicitation analyses how subjects respond to the images, attributing social and personal meanings and values. The project wants to improve creative-thinking and cognitive skills. Based on the Commission’s Communication on “e-Skills for the 21st Century”, PICS relies on the assumed true fact that adult people should be able to think and act creatively and critically. When they are encouraged to utilize critical thinking they can become active participants in the learning process because they are reflecting upon their current beliefs and knowledge and they are developing higher-order cognitive skills. Skills transform lives, generate prosperity and promote social inclusion. Without the right skills, people are kept at the margins of society. The partnership will have the following results:-introduce genuine education about images in formal, non-formal and informal education, -teach how to appreciate images and photographs in adult education;-emphasize the role of amateur/professional photography as an art, as a tool for practicing active citizenship, and giving a different impression of Europe;and this long term impact:-promote new job opportunities, linking education with entrepreneurship.The project will be based on those priorities:-developing basic and transversal skills-reducing disparities in learning outcomes affecting learners from disadvantaged backgrounds and with fewer opportunities, including migrants-enhancing digital integration in learning, teaching, training at various levels.Different kinds of organizations will take part in the project: public/private education providers and associations: The Italian CPIA is a the largest public provider of adult education in the province of Taranto. It works with Italian people at risk of social exclusion (NEETs) and with EU and non-EU migrants, refugees and asylum seekers.The Association EUROEDUAS in Romania is a non-profit association located in a disadvantaged region with experience in integrating and re-integrating adults and former migrants in the local labour market. The Escola Tecnologica e Profissional da Zona do Pinhal in Portugal is a private professional, vocational and technological school with experience in the training of qualified personnel or technicians with highly demanding technical skills.FKEPEEP in Cyprus is a non-governmental association aiming at developing the region of Episkopi and using nature and documentary photography to promote the beauties of the territory and raise people’s consciousness.The Muratpasa Mesleki Egitim Merkezi Mudurlugu in Turkey a big public vocational training center/university with experience in the world of economy and technology.ARYP CIC in the U.K. is a non-profit voluntary organization based in a very disadvantaged community with long lasting experience in Youth in Action.EKPOL is a civil non-profit council of the Region of Thessaly in Greece, which aims at successfully tackling obstacles on society issues with experience with vulnerable groups and photography courses.The Städtische Berufsschule II Regensburg in Germany is a municipal vocational school center with a Photostudio and final journeyman degree in Photography, working with young refugees, asylum seekers and other youth at risk. Project activities will include: digital class archive, a student portfolio, a website, photo-books/albums, a pedagogical toolkit, e-books, exhibitions, contests and social events. International workshops will deal with: the art of photography, rules and tips of photo composition, rule of thirds, use of light, ISO diaphragm, exposure time, landscape photography, digital photo editing, portrait photography and European cultural heritage through photos.

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