Adult education is a field of study that examines adults' possibilities and conditions for learning, formation and development. Adult education is a practice in which adults engage in systematic and sustained self–educating activities in order to gain new forms of knowledge, skills, attitudes, or values. It can mean any form of learning adults engage in beyond traditional schooling, encompassing basic literacy to personal fulfillment as a lifelong learner.
In particular, adult education reflects a specific philosophy about learning and teaching based on the assumption that adults can and want to learn, that they are able and willing to take responsibility for that learning, and that the learning itself should respond to their needs.
Driven by what one needs or wants to learn, the available opportunities, and the manner in which one learns, adult learning is affected by demographics, globalization and technology. The learning happens in many ways and in many contexts just as all adults' lives differ. Adult learning can be in any of the three contexts, i.e.:
- Formal – Structured learning that typically takes place in an education or training institution, usually with a set curriculum and carries credentials;
- Non-formal – Learning that is organized by educational institutions but non credential. Non-formal learning opportunities may be provided in the workplace and through the activities of civil society organizations and groups;
- Informal education – Learning that goes on all the time, resulting from daily life activities related to work, family, community or leisure (e.g. community baking class).
Biologically, an adult is a human or other organism that has reached sexual maturity. In human context, the term adult additionally has meanings associated with social and legal concepts. In contrast to a "minor", a legal adult is a person who has attained the age of majority and is therefore regarded as independent, self-sufficient, and responsible.
Scope of Adult Education
Adult education programs are generally continuing education programs for those older than standard high school or college age. Most commonly this is an adult who would like to earn a GED, become specialized in a particular technical or business skill in order to advance their career, return to or begin a degree program, or simply take a class on a topic they are interested in.
Basic Skills and Competencies that You Need to Succeed in Adult Education
- Basic computational skills
- Critical thinking skills
- Basic reading skills
- Writing skills
- Effective Communication skills
- Listening skills
- Continuous learning
Career Opportunities for Adult Education Graduates
After school graduates of adult education go on to careers in business, government, healthcare, and universities. More specifically, many graduates become adult counselors, working with clients at a number of levels including family, financial, and crisis management. Many also go on to teach adults in a classroom setting, at universities, colleges, community colleges, vocational schools, or other educational centers. Adult education graduates can also get involved in workplace education, such as education departments in healthcare organizations, education departments in religious organizations, human resources departments, or training departments in businesses.
Students who graduate from doctoral programs in adult education usually seek administrative and management positions in a number of fields, most notably in education.
Some job opportunities for Adult Education graduates
- Community College Professor
- Adult Literacy and Remedial Education Teacher
- Human Resources Training Specialist
- Human Resources Training Manager
- Adult learning and instructor
- Corporate Training Specialists
- Education Administration
Admission Requirements for the enrollment into Adult Education in Nigeria
The O'level subject combination and requirements needed to study Adult Education;
Five ‘SSCE credits including English and Mathematics or TC II with pass in English and at least 4 other subjects.
Three of Literature in English, History, French, Yoruba, Igbo, Hausa, CRK, Islamic Studies, Geography/Physics, Economics Government and Mathematics
In UTME, please note that English Language is Compulsory for this course. Therefore, the three (3) other JAMB UTME subject combination needed to study Adult Education under the Faculty of Education in the Universities below include;
» Government/History, one Social Science subject and any other subject.