Contemporary Issues in Adult Education

Welcome to the section related to various contemporary and controversial issues pertaining to the field of adult and continuing education. Much of this is directed at students enrolling in such a course as Contemporary Issues in Adult Education. If you have some ideas, suggestions, or resource tips related to this topic, or if you would just would like to converse with me, feel free to send me an electronic message.

It is recommended that all students in the course obtain an e-mail account. To obtain a FREE e-mail account that is accessible right through the World Wide Web, try Microsoft's hotmail system or Google's gmail system. These systems allow you to set up your account and then access it from any work station that can access the web. Thus, even if you don't have a a computer at home or an e-mail account via some local carrier like AOL or Compuserve, you can set up this e-mail account just by visiting your local library and using its work station that typically is connected to the Web or perhaps you have access to a similar setup at your place of work. It is quite user friendly and once you get to the site it walks you through the signup procedure. You can have your account established and operating within minutes and then can participate in the course through e-mail and can communicate with others through e-mail. This also is a good backup system to read your regular e-mail if you are on the road and don't want to pay the expense of a long distance phone call back to your typical server if no local phone number is available. You can access your regular e-mail through a POP connection.

In this section you will find the following depending on your interest in pursuing the material or leads I have included:

Various sources for studying or discussing a variety of informal education issues.

Some discussion of the value in study controversies.

A discussion of the value of debate in understanding some contemporary issues education

Some discussion of one controversial issue in adult education on post modernism.

Social change and adult education -- a controversial issue

A presentation I made several years ago adult education and the adult educator of the future

For material related to ethics, personal philosophy, or professionalism, topics to be addressed during the course, see the ethics page,.

For material related to creating an electronic portfolio, click here

Here are some ideas pertaining to interviewing adults:


I.   Introduction

I'd like to talk to you about your learning, things you learn, how you learn, why you learn. I'd like to talk primarily about the learning that you are doing now and in the recent past, such as the past year.

By learning I mean all kinds of things you may learn (learning in a class, learning in an informal group, learning on your job, all kinds of learning that you do on your own, such as learning how to refinish a piece of antique furniture).

II.  Prompts

How about in organizations? In church? TV special programs? Books you have read for a special learning purpose? Skills you have practiced and developed?

III. How do you like to learn?

Reading, watching a demonstration, in a class, hearing a lecture, practicing a skill. Combinations of various approaches?

IV. Future learning

What would you like to learn if you have the opportunity


Interview Topics

(This is a suggested list of topics you might cover if you interview a person perceived to be a successful lifelong learner.)

(Introduction) I am conducting a research project to learn about how, what, and why people learn and what influences their learning efforts throughout life.

I.   Basic Data

Interview # ______  Age ______ Gender ______

II. Life History

  1. High School, college, graduate, other

  2. Other informal learning experiences (that you can recall)

  1. Pre-school, school (K-12) - Tell me what comes to your mind (first few grades, likes, dislikes, activities, etc.)
  2. Out of school activities - What do you remember (being with your friends, music lessons, camping scouts, likes, dislikes, etc.)?
  1. Parents - What do you remember about your parents and education, learning interests, family activities that had an educational component, etc.?
  2. Extended family - What a similar remembrances about grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc.?
  1. What are your current interests, activities, employment, etc. that are related to learning?
  2. What areas are you interested/involved related to learning (organizations, community activities, hobbies, etc.)?
  3. How do you like to learn (reading a book taking a course, etc.)?
  1. What would you like to learn in the future (areas of interest, ways to learn, etc.)?
  2. How might the way you go about learning change in the future?

Revised September 20, 2006

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