The troubling terrain of lifelong learning: a highway cruise or a cross-country trek?

Edited book (chapter)


White, Robert D.. 2008. "The troubling terrain of lifelong learning: a highway cruise or a cross-country trek?" Henderson, Robyn and Danaher, Patrick Alan (ed.) Troubling terrains: tactics for traversing and transforming contemporary educational research. Brisbane, Australia. Post Pressed. pp. 137-147
Chapter Title

The troubling terrain of lifelong learning: a highway cruise or a cross-country trek?

Book Chapter CategoryEdited book (chapter)
ERA Publisher ID2978
Book TitleTroubling terrains: tactics for traversing and transforming contemporary educational research
Authors
AuthorWhite, Robert D.
EditorsHenderson, Robyn and Danaher, Patrick Alan
Page Range137-147
Chapter Number10
Number of Pages11
Year2008
PublisherPost Pressed
Place of PublicationBrisbane, Australia
ISBN9781921214318
Web Address (URL)http://www.postpressed.com.au
Abstract

Educational theory now takes for granted that lifelong learning is inherently good. It is assumed that in a globalised era people need to continue learning over their lifespan. Without a demonstrable general awareness of determinants, educational theory pictures lifelong learning as a cruise on the highway of life. By contrast, educational research shows that it is more in the nature of a lifelong cross-country trek. Determinants are situated in the terrain of each person's unique life experiences. Although policy supports universal lifelong learning theoretically, the reality of the policy agenda is quite different. What little research into propensity to lifelong learning exists indicates that up to a third of the population not only do not but will not participate. Theory evidently does not fully reflect reality. However, research is providing an emerging picture of participation and non-participation in formal lifelong learning. Indeed, it is the terrain of people's lives which holds the key to understanding that participation and non-participation. Motivators required for a trek differ from those required for a cruise. Lifelong learning research is an area of educational research's terrain which should trouble theory until theory better reflects reality.

Keywordslifelong learning
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020520102. Educational psychology
390102. Curriculum and pedagogy theory and development
390114. Vocational education and training curriculum and pedagogy
Public Notes

Author retains copyright.

Byline AffiliationsFaculty of Education
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