Introduction: Adult education is of utmost importance. Adult education must be encouraged as many people are deprived of the right to education during their childhood owing to various reasons. Adult education programs allow them to seek education during adulthood. Many countries have started the initiative to educate the adults of their country and are working hard to encourage them in this direction.
Adult education plays an important role in the development of the nation. Those who could not get a chance to study during their childhood can benefit through this and so can those who had to leave their studies mid-way or crave to acquire a further degree.
Importance of Adults Education –
Adult Education Essential in a Democratic Set-up: In democratic nations such as our country, the adults are given the right to vote irrespective of their educational qualification and on their own discretion to choose between right and wrong. An illiterate person can never understand the nitty-gritty of the political system. He/she has no knowledge about his rights and the duties of the leaders chosen by him.
What use is it to give the power to choose the leaders in the hands of people who have no knowledge about the how’s, what’s and when’s of the political system? One of the main purposes of adult education is to increase the literacy rate of the country so that its citizens are equipped to make a better decision when it comes to choosing the government.
Adult education must be given special importance in a democratic set up so that people can exercise their right to vote wisely.
Development of the Nation: Adult education also plays an important role in the development of the nation. A nation with greater number of educated people certainly stands a better chance to develop and prosper. Well-educated people enter various professional fields and work hard to acquire the skills required to handle their positions efficiently.
They develop the zeal to learn and grow. As they grow professionally so does their organization and eventually the nation as a whole. It goes without saying that if we have a greater number of educated and skilled professionals in our country then it will grow and develop at a greater speed.
Women Empowerment: Women in the earlier times were confined to the kitchen and other household tasks. Little girls in many areas and communities of the country are still confined to the households. They grew up to be vulnerable adults who are dependent on the male members of the family. Adult education programs are an opportunity for them to take charge of their lives and become self-dependent.
Challenges Faced by Adults in Learning –
Here are some challenges faced by adults when it comes to learning:
- Grasping Problem: Children are quick learners. They are keen, curious and possess good observational as well as grasping power. They love to explore new things, ask questions and learn constantly. Learning for them is fun. However, it is not the same as adults. As a person grows old, he isn’t as quick when it comes to learning, the curiosity to learn new things fades away and so does the ability to grasp. This becomes one of the biggest hindrances in learning.
- Time Constraint: Another problem is a time constraint. Adults are mostly working and are unable to take out much time to study. This is the reason why many of them refrain from enrolling at adult schools. Even those who go to adult school aren’t able to manage enough time for self-study. This slows the learning process and hampers their performance.
- Responsibilities: Children are just required to go to the school and study and maybe indulged in certain extra-curricular activities out of interest. They are not loaded with any other responsibility but it is not the same when it comes to adults. Adults need to take care of the financial, emotional and other needs of their family. They also need to fulfill their social responsibilities. Amid all these responsibilities they find it hard to concentrate on their studies and thus learning becomes a challenge for them.
- Difficulty Getting Back: It is not that easy to get back to school after you start working. Those who haven’t ever been to school find it all the more difficult to adjust to this new environment. Adults find it hard to accustom to new things and going to school as their age seems to be one of the most difficult and challenging tasks for them.
- Social Obligations: Many people refrain from enrolling to adult schools because of the fear of society. This is particularly true for women. A woman who has been suppressed since her childhood and has been denied the right to education will find it hard to gather the strength to go to school in her adulthood. People in our society take no time to criticize a woman who tries to be independent. Those who go out to study at an adult school are often criticized for neglecting their families. Meeting the needs of her family and children and completing the daily household chores also becomes a hindrance in learning for those enrolled.
Conclusion: Adult education gives a chance to learn and expand knowledge which in turn provides better job opportunities. Better job opportunity means better purchasing capacity and a better lifestyle. A number of schools have been set up by the government to provide adult education. However, the role of the government does not end here. It needs to sensitize the importance of education among the masses. People must recognize the need to get educated in order to feel determined to enroll in adult education schools.