Adult learning and the world of work (2008)

Education Matters: Insights on Education, Learning and Training in Canada, June 2008, Vol. 5, No. 2

In this article, published by Statistics Canada, the authors use data from the 1994 International Adult Literacy Survey (IALS) and the 2003 Adult Literacy and Life Skills (ALL) survey to get a picture of employer-sponsored training, and the characteristics of employees who engage in that training. The analysis offers an international perspective, with the situation in Canada being compared to that of Norway, Switzerland, and the United States.

The analysis shows that adult participation in organized forms of learning is reasonably high in Canada, though it falls short of the levels found in the other three countries. The great majority of adults surveyed reported job-related reasons for enrolling in courses and programs in 2002.

About half of those who did take part in training programs reported that their employers had sponsored the training. By extension, this means that half of the adults enrolled in training programs did that training on their own, without financial support from their employers, suggesting that many Canadian adults recognize the need for, and are active participants in, education and learning during their working lives.

The authors also note that employer support for training favours highly skilled workers in jobs with high skill requirements. That raises the question of how best to create education and training opportunities for those in need of skills upgrading.

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(2008). Adult learning and the world of work. Retrieved April 18, 2021, from
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