Adult learning

Adult learning as an area of research studies the learning process that takes place in very many different contexts – organised learning in adult education, popular education, higher education, etc, as well as more informal learning in everyday and working life. The conditions entailed by adult life in relation to studies and participation in education are also of particular interest.

Today's society requires us to relearn and learn new things throughout our lives, but it is also a matter of people's opportunities in terms of free knowledge acquisition and education, for example in study circles and at libraries. 

Linköping University is home to some of the most prominent research environments in the area, both nationally and internationally. The education science research into adult learning is primarily about popular education, where we are responsible for Mimer, a national programme for research on popular education, adult education (general and vocational), adult pedagogy and didactics for adults, and higher education pedagogy. There is also extensive research into working life and education.

Linköping university publishes The European Journal for Research on the Education and Learning of Adults (RELA) on commission from ESREA (the European Society for Research on the Education of Adults), whose secretariat is also located at the university.


An oak in sunshine.

Mimer - National network for research on popular education

Mimer has since the founding 1990, been one of the central institutes for research on popular education in Sweden and Scandinavia.


Social Interaction as Educational Practice

The research in this knowledge field analyzes interplay between actors (children, pedagogues, physical artefacts) with different special and social contexts (classroom, sandbox) in different communicative activities (free play, driving lessons).

A woman with an iPad sits in front of an audience listening to her.

Marketisation of adult education and its consequences

The focus in this project is on the marketisation of municipal adult education (MAE), and specifically the consequences of marketisation, through a tendering based procurement system, on teachers' work and profession.