Learning opportunities in the ‘Golden Years’ in a regional city

Bronwyn Ellis

Several projects relating to older learners have been conducted over the past decade or so, some involving the University of the Third Age (U3A) Whyalla, as well as other groups composed of older citizens. Here a wide range of learning activities, as revealed by survey data, publicly available information, and participant observation, are described. Some provide examples of engagement with the local university campus; others have this potential. Together with long-running group activities, new activities – a men’s shed and a music learning activity – have potential outcomes for participants’ health and wellbeing. Such opportunities help meet non-metropolitan lifelong learning needs. Maximising information sharing and cooperation can lead to mutual benefits, including for educational institutions. Increasing social inclusion benefits the whole community.

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