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Educational Gerontology

Learning in later life is an under-valued and under-resourced aspect of the experience of ageing. Likewise the teaching of gerontology has diminished in the UK. The Educational Gerontology SIG aims to raise the profile of lifelong and later life learning, and of gerontology, through events and opportunities for discussion and action.

Aims & Objectives:

We aim to promote research and debate on a wide range of issues including: 

  • The factors associated with activity and development in adulthood and later life;
  • The impact of age on engagement in different forms of learning (formal and informal);
  • The impact of different forms of learning on the ageing process, on wellbeing in later life, and on civic engagement;
  • Learning initiatives and activities for older learners in different cultural settings and countries;
  • The role of intergenerational exchange in learning and sharing knowledge in later life;
  • The role of older adults in educational policy making;
  • Learning and teaching about gerontology
  • The political economies of educational gerontology and gerontological education and the case for investment and structural development.


Next seminar – to be held online from 5.00pm – 6.30pm Thursday June 23rd 2022

Gerontological Education: a step too far for undergraduates?

Andrew Dunning, Lecturer in Social Policy at Swansea University and Debbie Price, Professor of Social Gerontology at Micra, will present on their experience of teaching undergraduate modules on ageing. They’ll raise questions about course content, the problems of marketing such courses and the role of the university in supporting and promoting gerontology. Dr Anne Jamieson, Emeritus Reader, Birkbeck University of London will serve as discussant and draw on her twenty-five years’ experience of graduate and diploma teaching. Dr John Miles will chair.

To register please contact or


The group held a Symposium online at the BSG conference on Wednesday 7th July 2021. Fifteen people attended and our two presenters drew on contrasted fields of enquiry. Dr Marianne Markowski, Research Fellow in the School of Health Sciences at University of Greenwich, reported on research into the role of peer education practices and their impact on professional training and considers the potential for their wider application. Dr Jitka Vseteckova Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and & Language Studies at the Open University drew on her current experience of delivering public talks on the theme of Ageing Well and considered how these have evolved in relation to her respondents and to her having to deliver them online. Besides presentations touched on theoretical debates about the nature and meaning of learning with implications for understanding the importance of teachers and their changing roles.

Discussion of mentoring and peer education continued online after the event.


Previously the group held a Symposium online at the BSG Conference on July 2nd 2020. The session was in three parts: Race Matters in Gerontology, by Dr Nilu Ahmed with Dr Karan Juttla as discussant; Learning in Later Life at a Time ofChange with presentations by Dr Jitka Vseteckova, Dr Joanna Walker and Dr John Miles and Learning in Practice with Rob Hunter of Learning for the Fourth Age. A recording of the session can be viewed here:

The group held a meeting in Newcastle upon Tyne on 12th March 2019 - a report on the various discussions at that meeting is available below.  


Educational Gerontology also submitted comments in response to the call for contributions to the investigations of Adult Education 100, the 1919 Centenary Commission on recommendations for adult education in the century ahead. Our submission can be found below


The group held a joint seminar with the BSG SIG for Technology and Ageing on November 22nd 2019 at the Institute for Mental Health, University of Nottingham. A report of the event can be found here: equality-caused-by-services-moving-online/


Membership of the Educational Gerontology SIG is open to all. A series of online seminars is under discussion for the year ahead.

Following the 2021 BSG conference in Lancaster the group is now convened by Dr John Miles, Dr Jitka Vseteckova and Dr Jill Wales. Jill will be contacting everyone on the current mailing-list and inviting you to register afresh. For the moment contact John Miles  for more information about the SIG, meetings, or the BSG events.

The Educational Gerontology SIG has emerged from a collaboration between BSG members of the Association for Education and Ageing (AEA), the Ransackers Association (RA), and Conversation into Action (CiA).

The SIG-Ed is strongly encouraging anyone with an interest in this field to become an active member of the Association for Education and Ageing and contribute to sustaining its important publication, the International Journal of Education and Ageing.