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Croatia: New framework for promoting lifelong learning and adult education

The Agency for VET and Adult Education has presented the results of the Survey on adult education in 2017 and the Strategic framework for promotion of lifelong learning 2017-21, developed within the ESF project Promotion of Lifelong Learning.

The survey involved 2369 participants from all parts of the country. It aimed to determine the types and the modalities of adult education activities, the sociodemographic structure of adult learners, the motivational factors and the barriers, as well as the learning outcomes and the perceived benefit of participation in lifelong learning.

The strategic framework provides analysis of the state of lifelong learning, basic strategic orientation for the promotion of lifelong learning activities, and communication plans which outline promotional activities for specific target groups. These include students in formal education, existing and potential participants in adult education, employers, vulnerable social groups, education policy decision-makers, and providers of services in adult education.

The results show that the typical adult learner in Croatia is younger than 40 years, employed, with upper secondary or higher education completed, middle or higher income, and living in an urban area. Several principal barriers to participation in formal programmes were presented: high fees for adult education programmes, different priorities, professional and family responsibilities, insufficient information on available programmes, distant location of education providers, health issues or untimely application. The motivation to participate in adult education mostly consisted of personal interests and intellectual development, as well as professional development, promotions or improved employment prospects.

The Strategic framework for promotion of lifelong learning is expected to contribute to the advancement of the annual Lifelong learning week. The main priorities for the promotion of lifelong learning in Croatia involve raising awareness of the need for learning throughout life, learning for personal and social development, the benefits of lifelong learning for adjustment to changes in the labour market, the specific needs of students, career advancement and employability, and the significance of non-formal and informal forms of learning.

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ReferNet Croatia