08.01.2020

How does a life skills approach in adult learning benefit participation?

A new policy paper, published in December, concludes EAEA’s thematic work on life skills in 2019. It outlines the key principles of a life skills approach and its potential for increasing participation levels, and offers a set of recommendations.

Life skills are building blocks of independence and self-efficacy. They are combinations of different capabilities that enable adults to become lifelong learners and to solve problems in order to live an independent life and participate in society. EAEA strongly believes that a life skills approach in adult learning can benefit individuals, organisations and communities.

Recognizing the existing gaps and the potential of the Life Skills approach in addressing the societal and environmental challenges, EAEA has dedicated its attention in 2019 to exploring how such an approach can be taken up at different levels. Throughout the year, EAEA has collected innovative practices that foster life skills and awarded the best initiatives with the Grundtvig Award, carried out desk research and conducted study visits with a thematic focus on life skills.

The resulting paper analyses the three key principles of a life skills approach – a holistic perspective, learner-centredness and flexibility – and discusses how they could benefit participation levels in Europe. Illustrated with case studies and backed by recent studies, such as the findings of the GRALE IV, also published last December, the paper brings forward a set of recommendations targeting both providers and policy-makers on how to introduce life skills provision or implement elements of a life skills approach in adult learning to the benefit of learners and societies.

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Text: EAEAPhotos: Atstock Productions

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