The first members of LERA
On the 24th of March in 2023 Lithuanian Educational Research Association ( LERA) celebrate the 25th anniversary of the founding it. The founding of the Association is undoubtedly joined to the restoration of Lithuania’s independence, when an intensive transformation of the science of pedagogy into educational science began. Lithuanian scientists of Educational Science had the opportunity to participate more actively in international scientific events, to meet and discuss with Western scientists, to develop international cooperation, which led to join to the European Educational Research Association EERA (www.eera.de), which brings together national associations of educational researchers in European countries. It was the initiative of professor Palmira Jucevičienė, Since 24 March 1998. Lithuanian researchers have become members of the European education research community, actively participating in the annual EERA conferences and their organisation, summer schools, the management of the EERA networks, various trainings organised by the association and other academic and organisational activities.
Due to the fact yhat EERA is a collective member of the World Educational Research Association (WERA(www.weraonline.org), all members of the Lithuanian Educational Research Association (LERA) are also WERA members. This provides even wider opportunities for international cooperation, which are increasingly being used by LERA members. Currently, the Lithuanian Educational Research Association has about 300 members, most of whom are Doctors of Education. However, the Association also includes representatives of other disciplines: management, psychology, public health, etc. Education is an interdisciplinary field of research and can be studied from a variety of perspectives and disciplinary approaches. The participation of other disciplines in the Association enriches the Association itself and education research in general. LERA also takes care of early-career researchers in education – all doctoral students in education are welcome to join the association. Most of them have become involved in various LERA activities, receiving care and support from more experienced colleagues.
The application of LERA members to become a member of EERA
LERA main goal is to bring together Lithuanian educational research specialists, to combine their efforts in improving educational research, introducing and promoting advanced education and educational practices, and expanding similar relations with international organisations. This objective is pursued in various ways. The main academic event of the Association is the annual LERA Conference. This year, the LERA Conference will be held at Kaunas University of Technology, where the Association was founded. Since 2019, LERA has been organising monthly distance education forums “Educology for Lithuania: Towards Research-Based Education and Training” in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport and other partners. The 23 education forums that have already taken place have presented and discussed the latest research on a wide range of education and learning issues, including content, inclusion, assessment of students’ progress and achievements, sport, arts, pre-school and primary education, training of teachers and researchers, conducting and using educational research, higher education, etc. All forum posts are published on the LERA website, are accessible to a wide range of stakeholders, are attractive and interesting, e.g. some posts have been viewed 1.7 thousand times. LERA delegates its representatives to various working groups and councils at the national level, e.g. the General Education Council, the Council of the National Education Agency, etc. LERA expresses its collective opinion on education and training to the leaders of the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport and political parties, and to the other organisations that take decisions in the field of education. Currently, LERA has 19 networks where education researchers join together according to their interests and work together to carry out activities of interest to them.
Over 25 years, LERA has accumulated a wealth of experience and has become an organisation that is heard not only in Lithuania, but also in Europe and, through it, around the world. Today, the Lithuanian Educational Research Association is a vibrant, active association that sets itself new challenges and ambitious goals, and brings together educational researchers for joint activities to address topical issues in education and development.
Prof. dr. Liudmila Rupšienė
Professor at Klaipėda University
President of the Lithuanian Educational Research Association LERA
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