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Applied Research In Health And Social Sciences: Interface And Interaction

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Self-Directed Later Life Learning: Individual and Social Contexts

Šatienė Salomėja
Published Online: 2018-01-31 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/arhss-2017-0002


The purpose of the study was to investigate how self-directed later life learning is utilized and interpreted by older adults in their particular environments. The following questions were raised: What are the opportunities for older adults’ engagement in self-directed learning in their environments? How older adults realize their self-directed learning in response to the opportunities provided by their environments? Thematic analysis was used as research method to analyse participants’ experiences and meanings they attribute to self-directed learning in their actual environments. The data was collected through semi-structured interviews with 12 older adults engaged in their self-directed learning pursuits. The findings from the study showed that older adults’ engagement in generativity-based activities, interest-based activities and social networks are contexts of self-directed learning in later life; these contexts support older adults’ self-directed learning by providing learning impetus, opportunities and resources; realization of self-directed learning is influenced by ageing-related changes and individual circumstances of older adults.

Keywords: Individual context; Later life learning; Self-directed learning; Social context


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About the article

Published Online: 2018-01-31

Published in Print: 2017-12-01

Citation Information: Applied Research In Health And Social Sciences: Interface And Interaction, Volume 14, Issue 1, Pages 2–25, ISSN (Online) 2451-3091, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/arhss-2017-0002.

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© 2017 Šatienė Salomėja, published by De Gruyter Open. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

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