ePrints Repository

University continuing education in a neoliberal landscape: developments in England and Aotearoa New Zealand

Bowl, Marion (2010) University continuing education in a neoliberal landscape: developments in England and Aotearoa New Zealand. International Journal of Lifelong Education, 29 (6). pp. 723-738. ISSN 0260-1370

PDF (136Kb)

URL of Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02601370.2010.523946

Identification Number/DOI: 10.1080/02601370.2010.523946

This paper explores how changing higher education policies and funding, influenced by neoliberalism, are impacting on university adult and continuing education in England and Aotearoa New Zealand. The downhill trajectory of English university continuing education in the first decade of the twenty-first century is compared with the apparent buoyancy of the situation in New Zealand during the same period. The paper discusses some of the contextual factors which may have contributed to sustaining continuing education in New Zealand, against the tide of developments elsewhere, and in spite its subjection to the influence of neoliberal policies since the 1980s. These factors include: an ethos of public dissemination of knowledge, an acknowledgement of the universities’ role as ‘critic and conscience’ of society, a broad commitment to educational equality and an approach which has been strategic as well as pragmatic. The paper describes developments in one New Zealand continuing education department between 2006 and 2010 as it experiences further institutional and political change. The author concludes that, in spite of having demonstrated considerable resilience, the current structures and activities of continuing education departments in New Zealand are as fragile as they have been shown to be in England. Possible responses to the current situation are discussed and ‘radical hope’ (Brookfield 2005) is advocated as the university-based adult educators’ response in difficult times. Radical hope, founded on critical theory, involves recognising and challenging the assumptions of neoliberalism, as well as critical praxis (Carr and Kemmis 1986), and a reaffirmation on the part of academics and adult educators of the political nature of adult education (Freire 1972; Crowther et al 2005; Martin 2008; Wallace 2008).

Type of Work:Article
Date:19 November 2010 (Publication)
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
Department:Department of Education and Social Justice

Barnett, R. (2000) Realizing the University in an Age of Supercomplexity Buckingham: SRHE/Open University

Becker, G.S. (1975) Human Capital: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis with special reference to Education New York: Columbia University Press

Bellis, A., Clarke, J. and Ward, J. (1999) Marginalised voices: A survey of current practice in widening participation with minority ethnic communities Cambridge: UACE

Bourgeois, E., Duke, C., Luc-Guyot, J and Merrill, B. (1999) The Adult University Buckingham: SRHE/Open University

Bowl, M. (2003) Non Traditional Entrants to University: They talk about people like me Stoke on Trent: Trentham

Brookfield, S. (2005) The Power of Critical Theory for Adult Learning Maidenhead: Open University McGraw Hill

Callaghan, J. (1976) ‘Ruskin College Speech’ reprinted in The Guardian 15th October 2001 accessed on http://education.guardian.co.uk

Campaigning Alliance for Lifelong Learning (2008) Bulletin No. 4 www.callcampaign.org.uk accessed 5th February 2010

Canaan, J.E. and Shumar, W. (eds) (2008) Structure and Agency in the Neoliberal University New York/Abingdon: Routledge

Carr, W. and Kemmis, S. (1986) Becoming Critical: Education, knowledge and action research Lewes: Falmer

Crowther, J., Galloway, V. and Martin, I. (2005) Popular Education: Engaging the Academy: International perspectives Leicester: NIACE

Department for Education and Employment (DfEE) (1998) Higher Education for the 21st Century: Response to the Dearing Report London: DfEE

Department for Education and Skills (DfES) (2003) The Future of Higher Education London: DfES

Department for Education and Skills (DfES) (2006) Widening Participation in Higher Education: Creating opportunity, releasing potential, achieving excellence London: DfES

Duke, C. (2008) Trapped in a local history: Why did extramural fail to engage in an era of engagement? Ad Lib: Journal for Continuing Liberal Adult Education Issue 36 Cambridge: University of Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education Research Division

Feinstein, L., Hammond, C., Woods, L., Preston, J. and Bynner, J. (2003) The Contribution of Adult Learning to Health and Social Capital London: Centre for Research on the Wider Benefits of Learning

Feinstein, L., Budge, D., Vorhaus, J. and Duckworth, K. (2008) The Social and Personal Benefits of Learning London: Centre for Research on the Wider Benefits of Learning

Findsen. B. and Harré Hindmarsh, J. (1996) Adult and Community Education in the Universities in Benseman, J., Findsen, B. and Scott, M. (1996) The Fourth Sector: Adult and Community Education in Aotearoa New Zealand Palmerston North: Dunmore Press

Fordyce, M. and Papa, M. (2009) Government Cuts to Adult and Community Education: A CLASS response Journal of Adult Learning Aotearoa New Zealand 37 (2): 6-9

Freire, P. (1972) The Pedagogy of the Oppressed Harmondsworth: Penguin

Geertshuis (2009) The Price of Community Education Journal of Adult Learning Aotearoa New Zealand 37(2): 14-27

The Guardian (2009) Hasta La Vista Denham 3rd March on www.guardian.co.uk Accesses 24th February 2010

Jary, D. and Parker, M. (1998) The New Higher Education Stoke on Trent: Staffordshire University Press

Jones, B., Thomas, G. and Moseley, R. (2010) University Continuing Education 1981-2006: Twenty-five turbulent years Leicester: NIACE

Jones, G., Galvin, K and Woodhouse, D. (2000) Universities as Critic and Conscience of Society: The role of academic freedom Wellington: Academic Audit Unit

Kelly, T. (1992) A History of Adult Education Liverpool: Liverpool University Press

Kogan, M (2000)’Lifelong Learning in the UK’ European Journal of Education 35 (3): 343-359

Kemmis, S. (2006) Participatory Research and the Public Sphere Educational Action Research 14 (4): 459-476

Lee, R. (2009) Engaging with the Historic Environment: Continuing Education Council for British Archeology www.britarch.ac.uk/education

Malcolm, J. and Zukas, M. (2007) Beyond the Fringe: adult educators, work and discipline Paper presented at the 5th International Conference for Research on Work and Learning: Cape Town, South Africa

Martin, I. (2003) ‘Adult Education, lifelong learning and citizenship:@ some ifs and buts’ International Journal of Lifelong Education 22 (6): 566-579

Martin, I. (2008) Whither Adult Education in the Learning Paradigm? Some Personal Reflections Keynote presentation in SCUTREA 38th Annual Conference: Edinburgh, July 2008

Mayo, M. and Thompson, J. (1995) Adult Learning, Critical Intelligence and Social Change Leicester: NIACE

McIlroy, J. and Spencer, B. (1988) University Adult Education in Crisis Leeds: Leeds Studies in Adult and Continuing Education

McIlroy, J. and Westwood, S. (1993) Border Country: Raymond Williams in Adult Education Leicester: NIACE

McIlroy (1995) The Dying if the Light? A Radical Look at Trade Union Education in Mayo, M. and Thompson, J. (1995) Adult Learning, Critical Intelligence and Social Change Leicester: NIACE

McLean, M. (1992) The Promise and Perils of Educational Comparison London: Institute of Education

McLean, M. (1995) Educational Traditions Compared London: David Fulton Publishers

New Zealand. Government (1990) Education Amendment Act 1990 on http://legislation.govt.nz

Olssen, M., Codd, J. and O’Neill, A (2004) Education Policy: globalization, citizenship and democracy London: Sage

Osborne, M., Gallacher, J. and Crossan, B. (2004) Researching Access to Lifelong Learning Abingdon: RoutledgeFalmer

Pearman, G. (2007) Differentiation: Universities and their distinctive contribution to adult and community education in New Zealand Higher Education Review 71 pp: 117-124

Phillips, D. (2009) ‘Policy Borrowing in Education: framework for analysis’ in Zajda, J. (ed) International Handbook on Globalisation, Education and Policy Research 23-34 Netherlands: Springer

Preece, J. (ed) (1998) Beyond the Boundaries: Exploring the potential of widening participation provision in higher education Leicester: NIACE

Preece, J. (1999) Combating Social Exclusion in University Adult Education Aldershot Ashgate

Preston, J. and Feinstein, L. (2004) Adult Education and Attitude Change London: Centre for Research on the Wider Benefits of Learning

Slaughter, S. and Leslie, L.L. (1997) Academic Capitalism: politics, policies and the entrepreneurial university Baltimore: The John Hopkins University Press

Speight, S. (2004) Teachers of adult education in British Universities 1948-1998 Studies in the Education of Adults 36 (1): 111-127

Stanistreet, P. (2009) Mind the Funding Gap Adults Learning April 09: 22-27 Leicester: NIACE

Taylor, R. (ed.) (1996) Beyond the Walls: 50 years of adult and continuing education at the University of Leeds 1946-1996 Leeds: University of Leeds

Taylor, R. (2005) Prospects for adult learning in higher education in Duke, C. (ed.) The Tertiary Moment: what roads to inclusive higher education? Leicester: NIACE

Teichler, U. and Hanft, A. (2009) ‘Continuing Education in a State of Flux: An international comparison of the role and organisation of continuing higher education’ in Knust, M. and Hanft, A. (eds) Continuing Higher Education and Lifelong Learning BV Netherlands: Springer

Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) (2001) Koia! Koia! Towards a Learning Society: The Report of the Adult and Community Learning Working Party Wellington: TEC

Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) (2007) Tertiary Education Strategy 2007/12 Wellington: Ministry of Education

Tertiary Education Union (TEU) (2009) Waikato University Cuts Hope for Aspiring Students Media Release 29th June accessed on www.teu.ac.nz

The Edinburgh Papers (2008) Reclaiming Social Purpose in Community Education Edinburgh: Learning for Democracy Group

Thomas, L., Cooper, M. and Quinn, J. (2002) Collaboration to Widen Participation Stoke on Trent: Trentham

Thompson, J. (ed) (1980) Adult Education for a Change London: Hutchinson

Thompson, J. (1996) ‘The Great Tradition: A personal reflection’ in Thompson, J. (ed.) (2007) Words in Edgeways Leicester: NIACE

Thompson, J. (1997) (ed.) Words in Edgeways (1997) Leicester: NIACE

Thrupp, M. (2001) ‘Education policy and social class in England and New Zealand: an instructive comparison’ Journal of Education Policy 16 (4): 297-314

Tobias, R. (2001) A New Zealand Perspective in Duke, C. and Tobias, R. Lifelong Learning and the University in the 21st Century Paper prepared for a University of Canterbury Symposium

Tobias, R. (2004) Lifelong Learning Policies and Discourses: critical reflections from Aotearoa, New Zealand International Journal of Lifelong Education 23 (6): 569-588

Tobias, R. (2009) Letter to Anne Tolley M.P. reprinted in Journal of Adult Learning Aotearoa New Zealand 37 (2): 10-13

Tolley, A. (2009) Minister of Education Aotearoa New Zealand (2009) Budget 2009 and our direction for tertiary education Letter to ACE Aotearoa 28th May

Walker, R. (2004) Ka Whaiwhai Tonu Matou: Struggle Without End Auckland: Penguin

Wallace, D. ‘Community Education: a mirror and a shield’ Reclaiming Social Purpose in Community Education: the Edinburgh Papers Edinburgh: Reclaiming Social Purpose Group

Wiltshire, H. (1956) ‘The Great Tradition in University Adult Education’ Rogers, A. (ed.) Adult Education 29(2) 88-97 reprinted in Jarvis, P. and Griffin, C. (2003) Adult and Continuing Education: Major Themes in Education London: Routledge

Zepke, N (2009) A future for adult lifelong education in Aotearoa New Zealand: Neoliberal or cosmopolitan? International Journal of Lifelong Education 28 (6):751-76

Keywords:education, social justice, education and social justice, university, continuing education, England, UK, New Zealand, adult and community education, Aotearoa New Zealand
Subjects:LB Theory and practice of education
HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
LC5201 Education extension. Adult education. Continuing education
LB2300 Higher Education
L Education (General)
Institution:University of Birmingham
Copyright Holders:Taylor & Francis
ID Code:595
Local Holdings:
Export Reference As : ASCII + BibTeX + Dublin Core + EndNote + HTML + METS + MODS + OpenURL Object + Reference Manager + Refer + RefWorks
Share this item :
QR Code for this page

Repository Staff Only: item control page