Laterlife: A time to learn

Routledge Taylor & Francis Group
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Educational Gerontology, 2008, 34 (3), pp. 206 - 224
Issue Date:
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In this article, an emerging framework for investigating and interpreting the experiences of learning in later life is presented. This framework is contextualized by a study in which the lived experiences of later-life computer learners were investigated. Significant ontological and existential interpretations from the study provided insights into the meaning of time in later life. Time for the omega generation is particularly important because people look to the past and the present for both meaning and integrity. They then use this knowledge to look to the future for a time when they will no longer be living. The period of older adulthood is also unique in the life course as an opportunity to learn. With no time constraints, people in later life are able to devote time to learning in a way not previously experienced. Interpretations from the research project provide a link between learning in later life and the ontological and existential search for meaning. These three related constructs (i.e., time, later life, and learning) are explored in this article.
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