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ERIC Number: ED068833
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1972-Oct-12
Pages: 12
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
The Meaning of Lifelong Learning.
Niemi, John A.
A concept of "learning" generally accepted today is that of a lasting change of behavior as a result of experience. The experience itself involves such things as the gathering of information and the acquiring of intellectual and social skills whereby to put this information to work for whatever purpose the learner has in mind. The concept of lifelong learning generally embraces both learning by chance and learning by design, and it has three dimensions--perpendicular, horizontal, and depth. The perpendicular includes formal learning throughout the life-span, from nursery school through post-doctoral work. The horizontal evisages breaking through the artificial barriers surrounding a field of study to unite with other fields in a cross-disciplinary pattern. The third dimension, depth, transcends all formal approaches to reach almost a metaphysic. One problem affecting lifelong learning is the threat of compulsion created through legislation and social pressure, aiming to transform lifelong learning into lifelong schooling. Instead of participating in learning, the individual may find himself undergoing compulsory adult education which would undermine the humanistic element. Another problem is the tendency to treat the concept of lifelong learning as a kind of popular cliche or slogan to be used to promote adult education offerings. A strategy proposed to foster lifelong learning is to work through existing schools and universities to diffuse the concept as widely as possible to educators and students alike. Adult educators need to learn to use the media consistently and efficiently and help adults acquire the skills needed to embark on their own styles of lifelong learning. (Author/CK)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the annual conference of the Northwest Adult Education Association (Missoula, Montana, Oct. 12, 1972)