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Education Indicators in Focus

Education Indicators in Focus is a recurring series of briefs that highlight specific indicators in OECD’s Education at a Glance that are of particular interest to policy makers and practitioners. They provide a detailed look into current issues in pre-primary, primary and secondary education, higher education, and adult outcomes from a global perspective, and contain an engaging mix of text, tables and charts that describe the international context of the most pressing questions in education policy and practice.

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Learning Begets Learning

Adult Participation in Lifelong Education

  • In Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden, participation rates in adult education and learning are over 60%, but they are one-third – or below – in Italy, the Russian Federation and the Slovak Republic.
  • The more highly educated adults are, the more likely they are to continue with adult education and learning: about 70% of adults with a tertiary qualification participated, compared with just 27% among adults who did not complete upper secondary education.
  • Employed adults are more likely to participate in adult education and learning: in half of the countries, the difference in participation between employed and unemployed individuals is more than 15 percentage points.
  • Motivation encourages participation in adult education and learning: countries where a significant proportion of adults express a desire for more education also show the highest levels of participation.

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