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Applying Andragogical Principles to Internet Learning By Susan Isenberg ...

Chapter 1:  Overview of the Study
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Applying Andragogical Principles to Internet Learning

Chapter One

Overview of the Study

It is important for adults to be lifelong learners. In the 1998 report to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) of the International Commission on Education for the Twenty-First Century, Jacque Delors, the chairman of the commission called education the necessary utopia and sees education as an “indispensable asset in its attempt to attain the ideals of peace, freedom and social justice” (p. 13). Maintaining a knowledge status quo is not an option for those who want to pursue their unalienable rights as defined by Thomas Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence—life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. To sustain and nurture life requires valuing good health and personal safety and understanding what it takes to sustain them. Liberty, or freedom to think and do as we please, requires an understanding of personal rights and limitations, which positions members of a society to be in control of their destinies. And, pursuit of happiness, which could be described as the ability to realize a personal vision, always requires gaining new competencies that are a dynamic interplay of knowledge, understanding, skill, attitude, value, or interest (Becker, 1977). “So, the pursuit of happiness is a journey we take from within; liberty is the freedom we allow ourselves; and life is the vessel which carries both our happiness and our freedom” (Casper, 1996, ¶ 2). There are things adults ought to learn in order to survive, to work, to be happy, and to be good citizens (Knowles, 1980).