Submission on draft Tertiary Education Strategy 2010-2015
This submission reviews the draft Tertiary Education Strategy as it affects adult learners in general and in particular learners and practitioners in adult and community education (ACE). It is written from the perspective of someone who is committed to adult learning and community education in all their forms. The submission identifies a number of positive features of the document. However much of the submission focuses on its limitations. These include the lack of recognition of organisations such as the WEAs, the apparent lack of appreciation of the potential benefits and breadth of scope of ACE, the limited understanding of adult learners and their learning, including their achievements in ACE programmes and in formal tertiary studies, and the apparent failure to recognise that the contributions of tertiary education institutions should go beyond the constraints of credentialing and include ACE programmes which are credential-free. The submission argues that several of these limitations are likely to reduce the probability of achieving the objectives set out in the document and the paper concludes with a summary incuding some key recommendations.