ALA webinar: Adults’ Lifelong Learning: the mediation of person + education + ‘community’

Wednesday, 11 November, 2020 - 13:00 to 14:00
ALA webinar: Adults’ Lifelong Learning: the mediation of person + education + ‘community’

Join us for a webinar presented by Dr. Stephen Billett.

As a means of advancing our understandings and practices as adult educators, this webinar explores how adults’ learning can be mediated by the interrelations amongst person + education + community.

Certainly, we need a more complete and comprehensive understanding of this phenomenon. What constitutes and supports adults’ learning across their lives for economic, social, and societal purposes is essential for individuals, their families, communities, workplaces, and, collectively national sustainability and development. Despite having a far greater span and potential salience, accounts of adult learning and development, have attracted far less interest from society, government, and science than those about children and young adults.

Whilst now changing, much of the current governmental interest and effort is directed towards viewing adult learning being mediated largely by education provisions: lifelong education. However, that provision is seen quite narrowly in terms of taught courses and subject to the intents of sponsors (e.g. government) and associated processes of enactment (e.g. mandated and administrative requirements). This leads to a restricted view of what constitutes lifelong education. Often excluded in such a view is the learning occurring within and through work practice, activities within the community, and the exercise of societal roles, such as parenthood or caring for parents.

However, within ‘schooled societies’ such as Australia, it is often difficult for contributions to learning experiences outside of educational provisions to be seen as legitimate, important, and worthy of support and promotion. Yet, beyond the actions and mediation of the learner (i.e. person), those provided through educational provision (i.e. education), inevitably a third contribution is perennially and ubiquitously evident. That is, the contribution and mediation of factors that are suggested, projected, and otherwise afforded. Sometimes these are referred to as cultural or social capital, yet this fails to accommodate the range of contributions mediated by circumstance, location, and also ‘happen chance’.

Moreover, there are often relational bases for these suggestions being enacted and engaged with by the learner. Here, and tentatively, these mediating factors that sit beyond the person and the education provision are referred to as those from ‘community’. Hence, understanding what mediates adults’ learning and development can be understood through the relations amongst these three factors: Person + education +community. Drawing upon previous and current research projects, and related observations, the contributions, and mediation of community that is proposed as a means to understand more fully how learning and development can progress productively across adult lives.

Our presenter

Dr Stephen Billett is Professor of Adult and Vocational Education at Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia. After a career in clothing manufacturing, he was a vocational educator, teacher educator, professional educator and held a policy role in Queensland. Since 1992, at Griffith, he has researched learning through and for work and published widely in fields of learning for occupations, vocational education, workplace learning, work, higher education, and conceptual accounts of learning for occupational purposes.

Session details

When: Wednesday 11th November
Time: 1.00pm - 2.00pm (AEDT)
Duration: 1 hr

Cost: FREE for ALA members and associate members. Non-members is $50, payable online.

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