This event took place on 2 July 2021.

Internationally, educators are being challenged to transform education and learning to respond to the demands of contemporary society and prepare learners for the future. To answer these demands, the question arises as to what forms of knowledge and learning might support society in facing future challenges?

Lifelong learning has long been the mantra of many national governments and international organisations. It is premised on the notion that laying strong foundations for children’s learning in the early years supports their continued and sustained learning into adulthood. While lifelong learning recognises that learning extends beyond statutory education, extending for example into areas such as professional development, it has been criticised for being instrumentalist and technocratic in its view of learning, therefore creating limited views of learners and learning.

Present and future challenges around the environment, social inclusion/exclusion, digital societies, economic sustainability, technological change, health and well-being as well as equality of opportunity require taking a refreshed view of learning and learners. This could be through reimagining the relationships between education, society and the environment, reshaping curriculums and pedagogical practice – as well as diversifying our understanding of where learning takes place, particularly in support of continued professional development. Sharing successful learning strategies and interventions across different life stages and between learning environments further provides opportunities for enriching the future of learning.

This workshop was an opportunity for educators, researchers and students to come together to identify the forms of knowledge and learning that might support society in facing the challenges of the future, with a view to informing research collaborations.

Who was this event for?
This event was of most interest to those who research, study or work in sectors related to education; childcare and child development, nurseries and pre-schools; professional and adult education; corporate development; sociology; psychology; society and the environment.

With permissions, contributions to the workshop were recorded and used in Plymouth Institute of Education research outputs. A minimum of one research collaboration will be taken forward for a cross-Institute project intended as a foundation on which to generate grant capture.



12:30 | Welcome and introduction by Dr Verity Campbell-Barr, Associate Professor in Early Childhood Studies and the Associate Head of Research at Plymouth Institute of Education

12:45 | Establishing principles of collaborative working by Dr Rowena Passy, Senior Research Fellow in Post Primary Educational Development and Dr Jan Georgeson, Associate Professor of Education

13:05 | The Sustainable and Civic University – realising the power of community engaged learning by Dr Paul Warwick, Associate Professor in Sustainable Education and Civic Futures

13:25 | Maths and stats support for learners and prospective students by Professor David Burghes, Professor in Education

13:45 | Creative musical work with children by Ruth Atkinson, Lecturer in Primary Education (Music)

14:00 | Break

14:10 | Discussion groups: breakout rooms exploring themes on ‘what forms of knowledge and learning might support society in facing future challenges?’

15:00 | Discussion group feedback

15:20 | Round up and conclusion

Research Festival 2022 visual ID - web header