(2012) Fostering social policies for engagement of older men in learning and improvement of their health and well-being

in Evaluation
Rob Mark, University of Strathclyde, UK & Barry Golding, University of Ballarat, Australia

This article is based primarily on findings and insights from recent, mixed method, field research in Ireland and Australia and suggests engagement in learning in informal community settings can have a positive impact on older men’s health and well-being. The article reflects on what lessons empirical research findings might have for policy makers and government and service providers interested in promoting men’s improved health and well-being and what implications there are for the creation of a culture of lifelong learning. It draws conclusions from attitudes and experiences of older men already learning in community contexts in Australia and Ireland and from complementary research in the United Kingdom and seeks to explain why some older men are often overlooked in local and community learning provision and policies. It identifies several types of informal, group-learning environments, contexts and organisations that positively engage older men and promote well-being for individuals, families and communities. Finally, it examines policy and practice for older men’s learning in Ireland and Australia and how policies might positively re-engage older men.

International Journal of Education and Ageing, Vol.2, No. 3, 221–236, September 2012, ISSN: 2044-5458


older men, learning, literacy, health, well-being

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