- Suzuki, N. (2014). The anthropology of aging and well-being. 1st ed. Osaka: National Museum of Ethnology
The article titled “The Values Transmitted by Lifelong Education in Denmark: The Conditions of Social Inclusion”, is written by Nanami Suzuki, National Museum of Ethnology, The Graduate University for Advanced Studies. There are six sections – introduction, History of folk education in Denmark, Social and Adult education, Folk High school and Conclusion. Suzuki has given the details of the system of education in Denmark from the 0th grade, through primary school, high school and adult education. Suzuki has emphasized the goals and special features of education in Denmark.
The article traces the historical background, the important turning points in the system and the names of significant personalities that shaped the current system. The topics covered include concepts like Efterskole, social education, lifelong folk education, Moratorium, Folkehojskole ( peoples’ school) activities centers, barriers-free society, normalization, inclusion of mentally challenged persons, and education for jobless and older adults. The main focus is on ‘social inclusion’ as mentioned in the title.
I got the information from this article that ‘activities centres’ in Danish schools are for all age groups from children to adults. After completing compulsory primary education all students attend Efterskole (after schools) where students and teachers live together. There is no curriculum but exchange of thoughts and visits to educational institutions. This helps young students to select their careers. Foreigners are also admitted so there is mixing with people from other cultures and communities. Mentally challenged persons are also trained to live an independent life. Hence, everybody is included. There are hobby centers, music room and games so that students will know their interests. I realized that there should be flexibility in education. The education system in Denmark is similar to my ideas about education in many ways. The three important things I learnt from this article are the importance of inclusion in education, the need for flexibility and the necessary to make provision for adult education.
- Wlodkowski, R. (2008). Enhancing adult motivation to learn. 3rd ed. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers.
The book addresses all educators. Wlodkowski starts with the assumption that adults do not have the motivation to learn. He gives sixty instructional strategies for handling adult education. He explains the environmental conditions necessary for adult motivation. The fourth chapter of the book is devoted to the factors that motivate adults to learn. The instructors must take these factors into account while designing and planning an instructional framework. The writer describes in detail what is ‘adult’ about adult motivation. He considers strategies like inclusion, attitude, meaning and competence. He mentions that there are integrated levels of adult motivation. According to Wlodkowski, adults possess certain skills and abilities as their brains are better developed.
After reading the fourth chapter in the book, I understood the fundamental difference between learning of children and adult learning. When children join a course, their minds are blank. They are curious and eager to learn. When adults join a course, they expect something from it. The brains of adults are already developed so they possess some skills and abilities like judging and planning. For children the new skills and abilities are developed through the course. In the fourth chapter, the writer has pointed out that motivation is very important in adult learning. Motivation has to be sustained otherwise adult learner may be lost interest before they complete a course. I understood that it can be difficult to sustain motivation of adults. Just like children incentives can play an important role in this regard. I also realized that the instructional plans which may be successful in case of children cannot be successful in case of adults until they are superimposed with a motivational framework which suits adults. One important thing that the chapter points out is that in adults, multiple feelings and thoughts can occur simultaneously. Hence, adult motivation can operate at integrated levels.
- Billet, S. (2013). The Perils of Confusing Lifelong Learning with Lifelong Education. International Review of Education, 59(3), pp.401--413.
This article deals with the report ‘Learning through Life.’ It emphasizes education which is provided in institutions. It talks about courses taught at institutions. It ignores the importance of learning outside the classrooms. Throughout the report, lifelong learning is presented as an institutional rather than a personal process. This view of education creates a wrong notion about lifelong learning. In institutions, there is strict regulation and control. There is a well-defined syllabus. The emphasis is on education in institutions. Lifelong learning outside the classrooms is neglected.
Billet’s clarification made me aware of the difference between lifelong learning and lifelong education. I realized that the inspiration from lifelong learning is something that comes from within the individual. There is nothing that can stop one who wants to learn. A person who wants to learn is self-motivated. His age does not matter. One does not learn only to make a living. Professional training is only one part of education. Learning is not confined to the walls of an institution. Real learning takes place everywhere, anywhere through life experiences. Learning through experience adds value to life and contributes towards societal development.
- Jarvis, P. (2014). From Adult Education to Lifelong Learning and Beyond. Comparative Education, 50(1), pp.45-57.
In this book, the writer talks about the change in the concept of education after globalization. The nature of society changed after globalization. Consequently, the idea of education also changed. There was a need for education and professional training at all levels. It became necessary to update the knowledge and skills of people who were already in service. This gave rise to many new terms like adult education, continuing professional education, continuing education and recurrent education. The writer has explained how the terms came into existence and their meanings. In 1976, the Lifelong Learning Act was passed in the U.S. Adult education became a part of the formal education system. It was looked upon as part of Human Resource Development, although a costly addition to formal education. Before globalization, adult education was a leisure time pursuit and after globalization it became work-based education.