New Insights and New Approaches for Lifelong Learning
The EU have established a target of 15% of adults participating in lifelong learning by 2020. Whilst some countries, notably the northern European countries, comfortably exceed that target, many do not, including Ireland. Within Ireland the Institutes of Technology (IoT’s) constitute almost half the total higher education population and two thirds of part time students at first cycle Bologna (Bachelor) or Level 6 to Level 8 of the Irish National Framework of Qualifications.
Whilst the IOT’s have the larger share of part time students the numbers of people within Ireland as a whole participating in part time and flexibly delivered education is small when compared to the EU 27. This paper describes the results of a market research exercise undertaken as part of a major project on flexible and part time learning being undertaken by the Institutes of Technology aimed at increasing the amount of flexible learning being provided and taken up by learners. The research was designed to find out what triggers may be used to encourage adult learners back into education in Ireland and so contribute to more appropriate responses to their needs by the Institutes of technology for whom increasing flexible and part time education is a major strategic objective.
Keywordsflexible learning Adult education part time education strategic change
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