Beyond Rhetoric

Adult Learning Policies and Practices

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This publication aims to identify what works in the policy and practice of adult learning, drawing on the experience of nine OECD countries: Canada, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom (England). It defines the features of a desirable system of adult learning, including ways to motivate adults to learn and methods to deliver appropriate services. This book will be indispensable to policy makers and those involved in the practice of adult learning.

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With the evolution toward knowledge-based societies, adult learning has taken on a much higher profile in the last decade. High unemployment rates, the increased and recognised importance of human capital for economic growth and social development, and changing economic contexts – together with public interest in improving social and personal development – have spurred an increase in learning opportunities for adults within the wider context of lifelong learning. There are broad learning opportunities in different contexts and countries for employment or personal purposes, for upskilling or for remedial purposes – but there are also strong inequities in terms of access and provision...

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