Public value in adult learning

Brennan, John and Thorpe, Mary (2008). Public value in adult learning. Ad-Lib, Journal for Continuing Liberal Adult Education, 35 pp. 22–25.



Government policies towards higher education in the UK and in most other developed countries have in recent years emphasised above all else the economic function of higher education. Whether this is in terms of the innovation potential of research undertaken in universities or in terms of the presumed greater workplace productivity of higher education’s graduates, the claims of the ‘knowledge economy’ are all pervasive in public policies towards higher education. What is possibly more distinctive about UK debates is the emphasis on undergraduate education and, given increasing attention as a result of the Leitch report (2005), sub-degree qualifications such as the Foundation Degree.

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