NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ995419
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 23
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0007-1005
Can Lifelong Learning Reshape Life Chances?
Evans, Karen; Schoon, Ingrid; Weale, Martin
British Journal of Educational Studies, v61 n1 p25-47 2013
Despite the expansion of post-school education and incentives to participate in lifelong learning, institutions and labour markets continue to interlock in shaping life chances according to starting social position, family and private resources. The dominant view that the economic and social returns to public investment in adult learning are too low to warrant large-scale public funding has been challenged by recent LLAKES research that shows significant returns to participants in lifelong learning with improvements in both their employability and employment prospects. It is argued that, under conditions of growing social polarisation and economic uncertainty, lifelong learning can have a significant protective effect by keeping adults close to a changing labour market. In this paper we review research from different disciplinary and epistemological traditions, providing evidence of the beneficial effects of lifelong learning, especially when taking into account the dynamics of the life course. Transitions and turning-points in youth and in adult life are markers of diversification of the life course; how far these diversifications amount to "de-standardisation" of the life course is debated. They involve biographical negotiation, in which any decision is consequential upon previous decisions and involves the exercise of contextualised preferences as well as the calculations of "rational choice". Gaining a better understanding of how changing demands are negotiated at different life stages offers a new perspective, moving from narrow versions of rational choice theory towards models of biographical negotiation as promising avenues for effective policy-making. (Contains 5 tables and 9 notes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)