The ‘double-edged sword’ of the adult learning environment

Authors: Sara Murray and Jane Mitchell: Charles Sturt University

Edition: Volume 53, Number 1, April 2013

Summary: The vocational education and training sector plays a critical role in the provision of educational opportunities for young adults who have left school prior to completing a qualification. Some research has found that a major factor that supports student re-engagement in formal education is the ‘adult learning environment’ that characterises institutions such as TAFE. Other studies have questioned the suitability of the adult learning environment for some students. This study explores how students and teachers in five foundation TAFE courses view the adult learning environment and how they respond to this environment. The paper argues that the adult learning environment can in some instances be a ‘double-edged sword’, in that it can both enhance and limit student engagement.

Keywords: vocational, VET, TAFE, young adult, learning, foundation

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This article is part of AJAL, Volume 53_1. The entire volume is available in .pdf for purchase here.

Posted in Refereed article, Research report, VET Tagged with: , , , , ,