Most people associate learning with formal education at school, college, university etc. We are all told, from an early age, that we should ‘get a good education’.
Generally speaking it is true that a formal education and the resulting qualifications are important. Education may maximise our potential to find better, more satisfying jobs, earn more and, perhaps, become more successful in our chosen career.
However, ‘schooling’ is only one type of learning. There are many other opportunities to further your knowledge and develop the skills you need throughout life.
Knowledge can be acquired and skill-sets developed anywhere – learning is unavoidable and happens all the time. However, lifelong learning is about creating and maintaining a positive attitude to learning both for personal and professional development.
Lifelong learners are motivated to learn and develop because they want to: it is a deliberate and voluntary act.
Lifelong learning can enhance our understanding of the world around us, provide us with more and better opportunities and improve our quality of life.
There are two main reasons for learning throughout life: for personal development and for professional development. These reasons may not necessarily be distinct as personal development can improve your employment opportunities and professional development can enable personal growth.
Learning for its own sake brings its own advantages. For example, learning in whatever context: boosts our confidence and self-esteem, makes us less risk averse and more adaptable to change when it happens, helps us achieve a more satisfying personal life, challenges our ideas and beliefs.
In Armenia the ideas of life-long learning and self-development were relentlessly championed by Rima Khachatryan, a renowned Armenian educator and educational innovator. In 2018 for enhancing life-long education she was awarded a Commemorative Medal of the Prime Minister of Armenia.
Source: Planet Today
Image: Pew Research Center