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Nonformal Education

Distance Learning became reorganized at the end of the twentieth century. It is administered through The Center of Innovation and Development of Distance Learning (CIDEAD). This organization is an outgrowth and restructuring of an earlier institution INBAD, or the National Institute on Secondary Education Distance Learning, which primarily focuses on non-university distance learning and training. The CIDEAD is attached to the Ministry of Education and works with the open university (UNED) as well as distance learning organizations that belong to the Autonomous Communities. It carries out work in the areas of teacher training and didactic research and evaluation. In addition, it offers classes in the areas of primary education, secondary education, pre-university coursework, language learning, and vocational and technical training. In 1996 more than 80,000 students were enrolled.

Distance training courses from the proprietary sector are also offered through The National Association of Distance Learning Centers (ANCED), which is a private distance learning institution. Private institutions within this organization offer more than 600 different courses, most of which are vocational. Spain has two, so-called open universities that offer higher education through distance learning. They are the National Distance Learning University (UNED) and the Open University of Cataluña. The UNED was established in Madrid in 1971 and began offering classes in 1972. Degrees from the UNED are of an equal status to those in any other Spanish university, and students from the UNED may transfer to any other university. In 1997, the total enrollment of the UNED was 186,000 students. It is interesting to note that the UNED has associated centers in Bonn, Caracas, Brussels, Geneva, London, Mexico City, Paris, Rosario (Argentina), and San Paulo.

The next distance learning university, the Open University of Cataluña was established in Barcelona in 1995, and was a creation of the autonomous community of Catalonia. Among its areas of concentration and focus are the study of the Catalan language and culture. The UOC was founded as a distance learning university, but it has based its teaching structure on that of a virtual campus. During the academic year 1994-1995, some 200 students enrolled at the UOC. In February 2000, Spain's UNED Distance Learning Center joined the World Bank Institute's Global Learning Network in order to provide Spain with the most advanced multimedia learning environments through the use of the latest communication technologies (interactive video, electronic classrooms, satellite communications) and the use of the Internet.

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Education - Free Encyclopedia Search EngineGlobal Education ReferenceSpain - History Background, Constitutional Legal Foundations, Educational System—overview, Preprimary Primary Education, Secondary Education