The Profession and Practice of Adult Education: An Introduction
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The Profession and Practice of Adult Education is a timely book and an excellent introduction to the field. Drawing from an extensive volume of literature, it provides comprehensive coverage and a clear guide. Graduate students will benefit from it and practitioners will be kept abreast of changes that are occurring.
--Peter Jarvis, professor of continuing education and senior research professor, University of Surrey, United Kingdom


Sharan B. Merriam is professor of adult education at the University of Georgia.

Ralph G. Brockett is professor of adult education at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.



Preface to the Updated Edition.

The Authors.

Part One: Foundations of Adult Education.

1. What Counts as Adult Education?

2. Philosophical Perspectives.

3. Perspectives on the Past.

4. Adult Education in Contemporary Society.

Part Two: The Organization and Delivery of Adult Education

5. Providers of Formal Adult Education.

6. The Adult Learner and Concepts of Learning.

7. The Global Context of Adult Education.

8. Examining Access and Opportunity.

Part Three: Developing a Professional Field of Practice.

9. Adult Education as a Developing Profession.

10. The Unacknowledged Side of Practice.

11. Reframing Practice: The Future of Adult Education.

Epilogue: A Decade in Review and Trends for the Future.


Name Index.

Subject Index.


“A comprehensive and readable overview of the field of adult education that will be useful to neophyte and seasoned adult educators, scholars, and reflective practitioners.”--Dr. Jovita M. Ross-Gordon, professor and program director, Adult, Professional and Community Education, Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas


“Drs. Merriam and Brockett combine their wealth of knowledge and experience in the field to deliver this clever, accurate, highly readable and practical text.”--Dr. Lorraine A. Cavaliere, dean of education and  associate professor, Gwynedd-Mercy College, Gwynedd Valley, Pennsylvania


“For those wanting to see where adult education has been, where it has gotten to, and where it might be going, Merriam and Brockett’s survey offers a great place to begin a critical reading of a complex field of theory and practice.”--Arthur L. Wilson  , professor of adult education in the Department of Education, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York