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The interrelatedness of formal, non-formal and informal learning : evidence from labour market program participants

journal contribution
posted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 authored by Roslyn CameronRoslyn Cameron, J Harrison
The definitions, differences and relationships between formal, non-formal and informal learning have long been contentious. There has been a significant change in language and reference from adult education to what amounts to forms of learning categorized by their modes of facilitation. Nonetheless, there is currently a renewed interest in the recognition of non-formal and informal learning internationally and in Australia. This has been evidenced through the New OECD Activity on Recognition of Non-Formal and Informal Learning and recent policy developments in Australia. These developments have implications for the recognition of skills derived from informal and non-formal learning, especially for those disadvantaged in the labour market. This paper reports on data from a learning grid in a Learning Survey of labour market program participants (n = 172) from northern New South Wales and southern Queensland. We find that life (informal learning) and work experience (non-formal learning) are relatively more important for gaining self-reported skills than formal training/study. We conclude by arguing for a holistic focus on the dynamic interrelatedness of these forms of learning rather than being constrained by a deterministic dichotomy between formality and informality.

History

Volume

52

Issue

2

Start Page

277

End Page

309

Number of Pages

33

ISSN

1443-1394

Location

Canberra, ACT

Publisher

Adult Learning Australia

Language

en-aus

Peer Reviewed

Yes

Open Access

No

External Author Affiliations

Faculty of Arts, Business, Informatics and Education; Learning and Teaching Education Research Centre (LTERC); Southern Cross University;

Era Eligible

Yes

Journal

Australian journal of adult learning.