A Conceptual Model of Lifelong Learning in the Australian Secondary School Context

Dr Don Adams
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Lifelong Learning encompasses formal and informal learning. Lifelong Learning policy is framed on the importance of skills in the new economies, and knowledge, being the foundation of modern economies means learning is the central factor for economic sustainability and growth.

The rhetoric surrounding lifelong learning has seen a significant focus on post secondary vocational and higher education sectors. Research into the school sector and lifelong learning in the Australian context has been limited. The current school curriculum embeds competencies for entry into the world of work (Mayer key competencies), but the identification of lifelong learning competencies or skills appears to have been overlooked. This is despite the significant role that school education plays in preparation of school graduates for lifelong learning.

As it is not possible to reliably measure how well the school curriculum addresses the development of lifelong learning skills, without a framework of those skills. A recent study within the Australian secondary school context was conducted to attempt to identify a framework of a lifelong learning model.

This paper outlines the outcomes of the study, where qualitative approaches were employed to explore the perceptions of secondary school teachers, who identified the skills and a conceptual model for lifelong learning.

These skills and model help in answering the question "How well is the public secondary school system in an Australian context preparing students for a lifetime of learning" and provides much data, information and direction moving away from the rhetoric. This will assist policy makers, administrators, curriculum developers and teachers in further advancing the effectiveness of school education within the context of lifelong learning.

Keywords: Lifelong Learning, Secondary School
Stream: Curriculum and Pedagogy
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: A paper has not yet been submitted.

Dr Don Adams

Lecturer, School of Education Faculty Of Education and Arts , University of Newcastle

Dr Don Adams has worked in the Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector for 13 years before taking an appointment at the University of Newcastle. He has had extensive experience in VET teacher education at both the school and post school levels His PhD topic relates to Leadership in VET. His research interests are VET in Schools, Lifelong Learning and VET leadership.

Ref: L05P0584