Article | European Journal for Research on the Education and Learning of Adults | From lifelong education to lifelong learning: Discussion of some effects of today’s neoliberal policies

From lifelong education to lifelong learning: Discussion of some effects of today’s neoliberal policies
Rosanna Barros: Universidade do Algarve, Portugal
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When we think about current adult education in the context of the uneven and contradictory social and economic impact of globalization, it necessarily implies thinking about the transfer from the paradigm of lifelong education to the paradigm of lifelong learning. We shall examine the essential quality involved in the social significance and the political dimension of each of these paradigms, because, since the post-war period, both became innovative educational policy strategies capable of mobilizing and transforming society. We would like to stress the importance of rethinking the role of adult education today in the light of the responsibilities shifting from the state to individuals, arising from the implications of this transition of paradigms: we do this by framing it in the context of the socio-productive restructuring movement, which speeded up the move from the so-called model of qualification, associated to social emancipation, to what is known as the model of competence (later competences), which is associated with individual empowerment. Therefore in this article we intend to question this new policy direction, which is associated with a conceptual and methodological shift in adult education practices, by using the prism of a critical sociology of education.

Keywords: Adult education; lifelong education; qualifications for social emancipation; lifelong learning; competences for individual empowerment

Volume 3, Issue: 2, Article 3, 2012

Rosanna Barros
From lifelong education to lifelong learning: Discussion of some effects of today’s neoliberal policies
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Volume 3, Issue: 2, Article 3, 2012

Rosanna Barros
From lifelong education to lifelong learning: Discussion of some effects of today’s neoliberal policies
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