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Tertiary Education and Lifelong Learning: The Potential for a Lifelong Learing Culture within the PNG Polytehnic

This study seeks to examine the extent of lifelong learning developments at one of the first polytechnic institutes in Papua New Guinea (PNG), with particular regard to how the existing traditional structure of vocational education and training (VET) can be redefined under the framework of lifelong learning. The notion of lifelong learning with regard to the larger framework of education is largely a foreign concept to PNG and this study examines how lifelong learning ideas are played out in one location. The research is primarily a qualitative case study and utilised semi-structured interviews as the main method for data collection in addition to acquiring government and institutional documents (e.g. policy and developmental plans). The research methodology was chosen to gain an in-depth understanding of tertiary education and lifelong learning from the perspective of the participants involved in the study. The findings of the study indicate a profound lack of understanding of the concept of lifelong learning and the potential impact it can have on the provision of education and training within the PNG tertiary education system. However, in an attempt to build knowledge on this educational concept, this study has analysed themes that emerged from the staff interviews with theoretical concepts from the literature review to conclude that lifelong learning is a potentially viable option for tertiary education, in particular at this polytechnic. As an educational model, lifelong learning has the benefit of serving both the individual, the government and the wider society. The implications for tertiary education would be considerable, because a diverse group of learners can be given more opportunities to engage in purposeful learning activities over a lifetime. The need to redefine the purpose and role of tertiary education in PNG is strongly recommended.
Type of thesis
Toli, R. (2015). Tertiary Education and Lifelong Learning: The Potential for a Lifelong Learing Culture within the PNG Polytehnic (Thesis, Master of Education (MEd)). University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10289/9599
University of Waikato
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