Back to School: Can Taiwan’s Universities Meet the Needs of Adult Learners?

A ‘knowledge-based’ society like Taiwan must accommodate its continuing education learners.

The News Lens
Date: 2018/12/04
By: Wujun Ke

Credit: Depositphotos

Imagine taking a class about a subject you always wanted to explore without the stressful checkpoints of homework, exams, or grade point averages. Instead of pursuing a degree, you are deepening and sharpening your wisdom. Instead of gearing your studies towards the whims of the job market, you are following sparks of nascent curiosity. Perhaps you are a professional musician toying with the idea of starting your own business, or maybe a strategic consultant with a passion for Tang poetry.

As the concept of lifelong learning takes root in Taiwan, personal and intellectual enrichment is becoming increasingly central to the lives of working professionals. While education is compulsory for the young and usually accompanied by parental supervision, adult education emphasizes individual responsibility. Going to museums, taking online classes, participating in workshops, or simply reading the news are all avenues of lifelong learning, which Taiwanese educators and policymakers believe will result in greater civic participation and collective social advancement.

Beyond offering degrees in business, management, and law, National Taiwan University (NTU)’s School of Professional Education and Continuing Studies (SPECS) provides classes appealing to adult learners who wish to cultivate non-career-related skills. These include courses on Buddhist sutras, Chinese literature, Chinese Traditional Medicine, chocolate-making, and wine-tasting.    [FULL  STORY]

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