What is Prison Education for? A theory of change exploring the value of learning in prison

Published: Jun 2016

Prisoner Learning Alliance

The Prisoner Learning Alliance has devised a 'Theory of Change' for prison education. The report aims to stimulate debate and conversation about the purpose and value of prison education; how we can more strategically evaluate the benefits and how we can improve provision. Using research with prisoners, former prisoners and others from the sector, the report presents five essential elements to life-long learning: 

  • Wellbeing
  • Human capital 
  • Social capital 
  • Knowledge, skills and employability 
  • Prison culture 

The report is designed as a resource for researchers, teachers and practitioners, learners, Governors, policy makers, inspectors and all who are seeking to create a positive learning culture in their institutions.

The report was led by PET's Head of Policy Nina Champion in collaboration with James Noble from New Philanthropy Capital.