ERIC Number: ED452387
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999-Feb-19
Reference Count: N/A
Reflections on the Study of Adult Learning. NALL Working Paper.
A common pattern in all studies of adult learning is that informal learning seems to be a very normal, very natural human activity. A 30-year old study and the 1998 Livingstone study show parallel findings. One of the most important findings is that about 90 percent of people had done some sort of intentional learning in the last year. The 10 percent who had not are content with their situation. Other findings are that people are learning a whole range of things; about 20 percent of all major learning efforts are institutionally organized, while the other 80 percent are informal; and informal learning is a very social phenomenon. In the 1977 Penland survey, the four top reasons for preferring to learn on one's own are a desire to set one's own learning pace, to use one's own learning style, to keep the learning strategy flexible and easy to change, and to put one's own structure on the learning project. The three reasons cited least are dislike of a formal classroom situation with a teacher, lack of money, and transportation. Kinds of learning related to work that people do are learning to do a task, learning new ways of doing things, and sharing among co-workers. People frequently engage in learning to improve their performance of a task. Implications or next steps are: studying the need to over-control; assisting people to successfully learn about social and global issues; using the World Wide Web in adult education; and encouraging people to look at their own learning. (YLB)
Descriptors: Adult Education, Adult Learning, Cognitive Style, Cooperative Planning, Developed Nations, Educational Research, Foreign Countries, Independent Study, Informal Education, Intentional Learning, Interpersonal Relationship, Job Training, Learning Motivation, Lifelong Learning, National Surveys, Performance, Personal Autonomy, Self Management, World Wide Web
NALL: New Approaches to Lifelong Learning, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, 252 Bloor Street West, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5S 1V6. Tel: 416-923-6641; Fax: 416-926-4725 ($3). For full text: http://www.oise.utoronto.ca/depts/sese/csew/nall/res/08refle ctions.htm.
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, Ottawa (Ontario).
Authoring Institution: Ontario Inst. for Studies in Education, Toronto.
Identifiers - Location: Canada