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For too long, theories and practices of learning have been dominated by the requirements of formal learning. Quite simply this book seeks to persuade readers through philosophical argument and empirically grounded examples that the balance should be shifted back towards the informal. These arguments and examples are taken from informal learning in very diverse situations, such as in leisure activities, as a preparation for and as part of work, and as a means of surviving undesirable circumstances like dead-end jobs and incarceration. Informal learning can be fruitfully thought of as developing the capacity to make context sensitive judgments during ongoing practical involvements of a variety of kinds. Such involvements are necessarily indeterminate and opportunistic. Hence there is a major challenge to policy makers in shifting the balance towards informal learning without destroying the very things that are desirable about informal learning and indeed learning in general. The book has implications therefore for formal learning too and the way that teaching might proceed within formally constituted educational institutions such as schools and colleges.
Preface. Editorial By Series Editors.-
Introduction. What Is Informal Learning. The Central Argument. Outline of The Book.-
1. Lifelong, Informal And Workplace Learning. Origins And Main Understandings Of Lifelong Learning. 2. Some Common Criticisms Of The Concept Of Lifelong Learning. 3. The Literature Of Informal Learning. 4. The Literature Of Workplace Learning. 5. Lifelong Learning As A Stimulus To Reconceptualise Learning.-
2. A Brief Genealogy Of Lifelong Learning. Learning And Living. Learning And The Economy. Vocational Education. Academic Education. High And Low Skills. Personal Stories.-
3. Origins Of A Mistake. A Quest For Inclusion. Empiricism. Policy. Globalisation. Consequences. Exemplars.-
4. Opportunity And Contingency. Public And Private. Political Liberalism. Modus Viviendi Or Consensus? Reinterpreting An Overlapping Consensus. Practical Engagement. Victoria’s Story – A Cautionary Tale. A Network Society. Personal Stories Revisited.-
5. Rethinking Learning. Why A Single Account Of Learning Is Unlikely To Be Viable. Metaphor Clusters. Dominance Of The Propositional Learning Cluster. The Key Roles Of Judgement And Context. Exemplars. The Informal Learning And Lifelong Learning Cluster.-
6. The Importance Of Contextuality For Learning. Understandings Of Context. Reasons For Neglecting Context. Informal Learning Is Significantly Contextual. Propositional Learning And Context. What’s So Important About Propositional Learning? Learning, Spaces And Contexts. Exemplars. An Informal Recovery Programme.-
7. The Idea Of Practice. Macintyre. Legitimate Peripheral Participation. Practices And Contexts. Practical Involvement. Formal Learning. Exemplars.-
8. The Idea Of Judgement. Making Implicit Context Explicit. Judgement. Interests And Purposes. Exemplars.-
9. Wisdom. A Short Summary Of Wisdom. Shulman And The Wisdom Of Practice. Dreyfus And The Stages Of Attaining Wisdom. Sternberg On Wisdom – The BalanceTheory. Exemplars. The Paradox Of Wisdom.-
10. Recovering The Informal. A Theory Of Informal Learning In Summary. Further Exemplars. Shifting The Balance.-