“We may be witnessing the emergence of what has been called the learning society”

Quote:“We may be witnessing the emergence of what has been called the learning society” (Merriam et al 2007, p 25).

 Objective: What have you learned from reflecting on this particular quote? What has caught your attention?

Upon researching and reflecting on the above quote I realize that continuous learning is necessary for all of society. “Demographics, globalization andtechnology are entwined” (Merriam et all 2007, p 21). These are influencing how higher education is being delivered. There is a paradigm shift for post secondary education to become a consumer approach. Institutions must transform in response to these changes and the competitiveness market. This may include developing of new systems and being more accessible for the learner. Hutchins and Husen define learning society as “a new kind of society in which the old limits on where and when organized knowledge could be acquired no longer apply” (Towards Knowledge Societies).

Reflective: What did you realize about teaching as a result of this quote?

As an Educator I realize that my students will be multicultural, possess varying degrees of knowledge, have a variety of life experiences, and havedifferent levels of education. The learner transfer life experiences, information, reflection, and communication into knowledge.“Globalization in conjunction with communication technology is reshaping higher education.” (Merriam et all, p 23). “Students of global education are required to be self-directed, self-motivated, and resourceful-learners” (Merriam et all, p 23).  The Instructor’s role will be that of a facilitator. Society has shifted towards education preparing the learner to be job ready with the knowledge, skills and technology (Merriam et all, p 23).

Interpretive: What was your “Aha!” moment when you read this quote? In what way(s) did the quote change your mind about being an adult educator? What was one key insight that you now have as a result of this quote?

Life experiences, information, reflection, and communication transfers into knowledge. And that transformation of knowledge occurs through technology, media and cultural (Towards Knowledge Societies).  “Adult education must prepare the worker for the workforce. This includes knowledge, skills, technology” (Merriam et all, p 23). Job markets are very competitive, larger numbers of society are obtaining post secondary education. And employer’s demands for job ready applicants have increased.The nursing field has become a very competitive job market. Therefore as an Educator I am required to prepare the students with the knowledge, skills and technology to be job ready.

Decisional: How has this quote and the insight that you have gained from reflecting upon it, influenced your notion of teaching or how you will teach in the future?

Upon reflecting and researching this quote, as an Educator I need to considerthat the learner comes with life experiences that transfer into knowledge. Thatthe “learning society” in the twenty first century learns different from the traditional method of learning. Therefore as an educator I must continue to engage in lifelong learning, “Learning is a global community” (Merriam et all 2007, p 23). Nurses make a commitment to engaging in life long learning. This is to remain current with best practices, technologies, and trends. The nursing field has become a very competitive job market. The learning society is an aspect to look beyond formal educational environments and to locate learning as a quality not just of individual but also as an element of systems” (The Theory and Rhetoric of the Learning Society)


Merriam, S.B., Caffarella, R. S., & Baumgartner, L.M. (2007), Learning in Adulthood a Comprehensive Guide (3rd Edition)

Smith, M.K. (2000), “The theory and rhetoric of the learning society”, Theof informal education, Retrieved on January 7, 2013 from the World Wide Web: http://www.infed.org/lifelonglearning/b-lrnsoc.htm.

UNESCO Publishing, (2005), Towards Knowledge Societies, Retrieved on January 6,         2012 from the World Wide Web: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0014/001418/141843e.pdf

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