The teaching of Adult Education aims to develop the acquisition of knowledge about the new paradigms of Adult Education in the perspective of lifelong learning. It therefore has as objectives:
1. To provide students with historical, theoretical and methodological knowledge related to adult education.
2. To develop skills and competences in the field of professions related to adult education, with particular attention to the acquisition of qualitative methods aimed at the development of human resources.
3. To promote the study of literature related to adult education.
With the study of Adult Education the student will be able to achieve the following training objectives.
In terms of knowledge and understanding:
- knowledge and understanding of the theoretical, historical, epistemological and methodological dimensions of adult education in the perspective of lifelong learning.
In terms of ability to apply knowledge and understanding:
- problem solving skills related to learning processes, activities and adult education pathways;
- ability to investigate and organize complex problems and information in different contexts and according to appropriate methodologies for the facilitation of learning, the design and implementation of training processes aimed at the development of human resources.
In terms of autonomy of judgement:
- ability to analyse and elaborate theories, processes and data related to adult education;
- ability to assess the quality of training processes and projects in different contexts.
In terms of communication skills:
- ability to express in a critical and systematic way arguments related to the theories and processes of Adult Education;
- communicative and relational skills functional to the facilitation of educational processes and to the development of adult competences.
In terms of learning skills:
- ability to exercise critical and metariflexive functions with regard to knowledge related to adult education and one's own learning ability;
- self-direction in learning and the use of context resources for this purpose.
teacher profile | teaching materials


- Adult education and lifelong learning perspective.
- Theories of training and learning in adulthood.
- Inclusion, sustainability and equity in adult education.
- Quantitative and qualitative methods and tools: biographical-narrative approach.
- Key competences for lifelong learning.
- Formal, non-formal and informal learning contexts.
- Recognition, validation and certification of skills.
- Educational design.

Core Documentation

Di Rienzo, P. (2012). Educazione informale in età adulta. Roma: Anicia.
Bertoni, P., Di Rienzo, P., Palazzini, L. (2021) (a cura di). Analisi e innovazione dei processi formativi del terzo settore: competenze strategiche degli operatori volontari in servizio civile. Lupetti: Bologna.
Knowles, M. (1996). La formazione degli adulti come autobiografia. Milano: Raffaello Cortina.

Reference Bibliography

Bertaux D. (1980). L’approche biografique: sa validité methofologique, ses potentialités. Cahiers Intenationaux de Sociologie, 49, 200-201. Cedefop, European Commission, ICF. (2019). European inventory on validation of non-formal and informal learning 2018 update: Synthesis report. http://libserver.cedefop.europa.eu/vetelib/2019/european_inventory_validation_2018_synthesis.pdf Di Rienzo, P. (2021). I CPIA alla prova dell’innovazione. Il riconoscimento dei crediti formativi e la certificazione delle competenze nell’istruzione degli adulti. Roma: Anicia. Di Rienzo, P. (2020). Insegnare in carcere. Le competenze strategiche dei docenti per l’istruzione degli adulti negli istituti penitenziari. Roma: Anicia. Di Rienzo P. (2020). Making Informal Adult Learning Visible. The Recognition of the Third Sector Professionals’ Key Competences. Education Sciences, 10, n. 9, pp. 1-15. Dominicé P. (1990). L’histoire de vie comme processus de formation. Paris: L’Harmattan. Meghnagi, M. and M. Tuccio (2022). The recognition of prior learning: Validating general competences. OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers, No. 270. Paris: OECD UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning. (2018). Recognition, validation and accreditation of youth and adult education as a foundation of lifelong learning. Hamburg: UIL. UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (2019). 4th global report on adult learning and education: leave no one behind: participation, equity and inclusion. Hamburg: UIL.

Type of delivery of the course

E-learning: theoretical lessons, practical activities, group work, project work.


Attendance is not compulsory

Type of evaluation

Assessment methods 1.The assessment method refers to a written test consisting of: multiple-choice test (question with four alternative answers) and semi-structured questions: (two questions with partially open-ended answers). 2. The duration of the written test is 1 hour and 30 minutes. 3. Possible on-line exam includes only the interview, which lasts about 15 minutes. 4. For the assignment of the final grade, the following criteria will be adopted: The final evaluation will take into account the student's ability to identify the salient aspects of theoretical, historical, epistemological and methodological elements of adult education and learning in the perspective of lifelong learning. During the oral exam, the teacher will evaluate whether the student is able to go beyond what has been taught, dealing with new situations in a creative and original way. The final assessment will be the way in which the student is able to reflect on problematic issues in adult education and to make well-founded judgments and evaluations.