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28.10.2014 10:29

Adult Education Studies in India

Robert Emmerich Press and public relations
Julius Maximilians University of Würzburg

Like Germany, India is one of the few countries in the world that has offered adult education and continuing education courses for decades. Four female students from the University of Würzburg were able to get to know the Indian system on site.

What does studying adult education in India look like? Which professional fields are the students aiming for there? What similarities and differences have to be taken into account for a German-Indian model for the professionalization of adult education and further training?

The Würzburg students Agnes Birner, Lisa Fluhrer, Julia Färber and Khulud Sharif-Ali investigated such questions during a two-month research stay in India. They are all enrolled in the Master’s degree in Education. Their stay abroad, from which they returned on October 10, was funded by the University's India Center (A New Passage to India, funding from the German Academic Exchange Service, DAAD).

Study in cooperation with Indian universities

The research questions that the students investigated in India are part of an international study. The Würzburg Professorship for Adult Education / Continuing Education and the Würzburg Chair for Empirical Educational Science cooperate closely with Delhi University and Jawaharlal Nehru University.

The study explores how theory and practice are interlinked in the study of adult education / further training in India and Germany. Both countries are among the few countries in the world that have offered relevant courses for decades.

The starting point of the study was a long-term research collaboration between Professor Regina Egetenmeyer and Professor Syed Yusuf Shah, Director of the International Institute for Adult and Lifelong Education at Delhi University. Together they created survey instruments for the survey of Indian Master’s students in the field of “Lifelong Learning, Continuing Education and / or Extension”. The data collection was supplemented by observations in various courses.

Many practical examples in teaching

"The Indian professors bring a lot of practical examples in their seminars, especially when it comes to the cooperation between the students and the individual community centers," says Julia Färber. She and her fellow students agree that this collaboration, which consists of lifeworld-oriented help and field research, gives students a good insight into practice and brings them closer to their future field of work.

In addition to collecting data at various Indian universities in the south and north of the country, the students used their stay to visit workshops and conferences. They received further insights into Indian adult education. “The stay in India has significantly changed and expanded my view of adult education there. Literacy and helping people in everyday life play a much bigger role, ”says Agnes Birner.

Further India activities planned

Professor Regina Egetenmeyer has been Visiting Professor at the International Institute for Adult and Continuing Education in New Delhi since 2014. This opened up further options for cooperation with India - the research stay of the four students was just one of the other research and teaching-related exchange activities financed by the Würzburg India Center.

In January and February 2015, nine students and two professors from the Indian partner universities in Würzburg will take part in the Winter School “Comparative Studies in Adult and Continuing Education”. In September 2015, a study visit for further students of the Masters in Education is planned in Delhi.


Prof. Dr. Regina Egetenmeyer, Professorship for Adult Education / Continuing Education, University of Würzburg, T (0931) 31-83898, [email protected]

Additional Information:

http://www.erwachsenenbildung.uni-wuerzburg.de To the homepage of the professorship for adult education / further education at the University of Würzburg

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