Education a Continous Process
Baxter and Tight (1994) noted in their research that in many countries, people are being encouraged to be “lifelong learners,” people who return to school again and again throughout their lives, rather than looking at education as something that ends with graduation from high school or college (Baxter & Tight, 1994). The “Lifelong Learning” movement believes that education should be an important part of people’s lives throughout their lives instead of restricting it to childhood and adolescence.
The authors interviewed people who had returned to education later in life to see what factors supported or interfered with that choice. One of the observations they made was that for many older students, especially women, returning to school represented a real juggling act with their time management. This trend was so strong that a significant number of people asked to participate felt that they could not spare the hour the interview would take. This trend of women being stressed for time to do everything they and others expected of them was so strong that they mentioned that perhaps the idea of people attending school throughout their lives might be a male view because often men do not have to juggle as many important tasks as women.
The women who were interviewed noted that they had family, personal and work commitments, all of which had to come before school, with the result that when they attended classes, often there was no room in their lives for any social activities connected to their academic work (Baxter & Tight, 1994).
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However, Palwak (1999) points out that in an age of rapidly changing technology, it may be necessary to include education in one’s career plans to the worker does not become stuck with archaic skills. The difficulty in juggling time is also demonstrated in discussions on this topic by the fact that so many articles focus on retirees who return to learning because they finally have the time to study things that have interested them for many years.