By Neil Selwyn
This enticing ebook sheds mild at the ways that adults within the twenty-first century engage with technology in numerous studying environments. in line with one of many first large-scale educational learn tasks during this region, the authors current their findings and offer practical ideas for using new know-how in a studying society. They invite debate on: why ICTs are believed to be capable to affecting optimistic switch in grownup studying the drawbacks and boundaries of ICT in grownup schooling what makes a lifelong learner the broader social, fiscal, cultural and political realities of the data age and the educational society. grownup studying addresses key questions and offers a valid empirical starting place to the present debate, highlighting the complex realities of the training society and e-learning rhetoric. It tells the tale of these who're excluded from the training society, and provides a collection of strong thoughts for practitioners, policy-makers, and politicians, in addition to researchers and scholars.
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Additional info for Adult Learning in the Digital Age: Information Technology and the Learning Society
In terms of ICT-related provision there has been a spectacular boom in the provision of learning about new technology in adult education institutions over the past ten years (Walker 2004). The impact of ICT on the provision of adult education is also reflected in the growth of profit and not-for-profit organisations now offering different types of ICT-based adult education. Across the world, large-scale national learning organisations using ICT as their primary means of provision have been developed, such as the UK ‘University for Industry’, the Korean ‘Cyber University’ and the Spanish ‘National Distance University’.
Thus, individuals’ interactions with ICTs are not as simple as the ‘user’/ ‘non-user’ dichotomy constructed by much of the previous literature and certainly not determined solely by issues of physical access to technology. Reconsidering the consequences of engagement with ICT In attempting a deeper understanding of the potential technological impediments to the le@rning society thesis we should also consider the fundamental yet often unvoiced element of the digital divide debate—the outcome, impact and consequences of accessing and using ICT.
Although estimates vary, the marketplace in 2005 for work-related ‘e-learning’ in the UK was estimated to be worth between £2 billon and £3 billion (Paton 2003). This is largely due to the plethora of private sector organisations now providing training programmes for millions of learners in the workplace. A multinational provider such as WebCT claims to have over 10 million licensed learners on their software systems. 5 million registered online learners on a global basis. Alongside the rise of the home as a key site of adults’ access to and engagement with ICT-based learning, the community-based provision of ICT-based learning has also flourished.