Lifelong Learning: the agenda and the response
Flexible Learning within MMU: Working smarter not harder
"What the ..@#~* PDP* < $*|>.. is going on ?"
How adults really learn- or what we think we know about how they learn!
'Transformative' Models for Learning, Teaching and Academic Professional Development - A 'Self-ish' Approach
Developing a Departmental Employability Strategy
Skills for Lifelong Learning: A Progress Report
Professional Modern Apprenticeships
Lifelong Learning Means You Too
Faculty Learning and Teaching Reports
Learning and Teaching News from the Library
Department of Chemistry and Materials
Learning is natural. We do it with our eyes closed; we do it all
our lives. In the course of a lifetime, every action and reaction incrementally
conditions us. Education, however, is to learn with our eyes open.
It is to take control and influence the future; to help ourselves and
others to be in a position to get to a position. In this sense, lifelong
learning is about keeping our eyes wide open.
We do not stop often enough to reflect on the pace at which our lives
change. When Einstein proved that time progresses more slowly for travelling
observers, he was certainly not considering the illusion of slow change
that we can experience when moving through our complex lives. But the
world does move inexorably forward. Was it merely a few years ago when
you were last able to manage without a mobile phone? In a rapidly changing
world, education is a lifelong reality.
The John Dalton site of my home department, the Department of Chemistry
and Materials, carries the name of one of the 19th Century’s pioneers
of Chemical Science. Indeed, the City of Manchester will pay its civic
respects in October to the 200th anniversary of his Atomic Theory, which
he presented (as an addendum!) to the Manchester Literary and Philosophical
Society. He was primarily a school teacher and a chemist in his spare
time. Forever learning. When reflecting on the historical transition of
my subject of Chemistry - as it progressed from the First Age of Dalton’s
era through the Second Age of the 20th Century, when we learned how to
tailor-make molecules, to the present Twenty-First Century Third Age,
where we design ‘clever’ materials to underpin new technologies
and modern lifestyles - I am struck by the change that learning in all
its facets has engendered over the equivalent of just three lifelong-learning
In society, the summative effect of generations of lifelong learning
can be an irresistible force. The presence of higher education systems
in all advanced societies recognises both this and the future prosperity
that can go hand-in-hand with a highly skilled workforce. For us, the
recent White Paper charts the future of higher education for the rest
of most of our professional lives. Lifelong learning and flexible learning
feature prominently. Such is their importance globally that it is safe
to conclude that these issues will outlive changes in national governments.
And so to this edition of Learning and Teaching in Action. Under
the theme of Flexible and Lifelong Learning, the articles diffract
this substantial continuum into a rainbow of complementary colours of
professional engagement at MMU. Whether you’re involved in teaching,
training or academic strategy there is a ‘colour’ in these
pages for you. I hope you will be motivated to paint some of the lifelong
learning of the authors onto your own canvas.
My thanks are extended to the authors for their contributions and to
Rachel Forsyth, the resident editor, for the rewarding experience that
this guest editing has been.
telephone: 0161 247 1428
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