An Adult is a person who is aged twenty one or more than twenty one years old. Thus adult education is the name of teaching imparted to adults.
Difference between Education of Child and Adult:
There is a great difference between the education of children and the education of adults. Children are principally students. Their chief purpose is to go to school and learn. But the adults are principally bread winners; in their case education is secondary in importance.
The Illiterate and Partially Literate:
For the purpose of education, adults may be divided into two classes- the illiterate and partially literate. It is the aim of adult education to see that every person in the country knows at least the three R’s, reading, writing and arithmetic. Such knowledge is absolutely necessary for every person living in a democratic country.
It is the aim of adult education that such adults as are partially literate should be taken for on the road of knowledge. They would be taught their rights and responsibilities as citizens. It will be their duty to pass the knowledge on to those who know less than they do. Adult education is based on the idea that no one can be completely happy unless he or she is educated. After all, culture opens the eye of mind. He that is mentally blind cannot hope to be perfectly happy.
The minimum that is expected by adult education is the ability to read the daily news paper and to follow the current events of the world.
England and Adult Education:
The first adult educations were started in England. They were only Sunday schools. But later on they began to work daily.
India and First Start of Adult Education:
In India too adult education was first started in Bombay (now Mumbai) in a sprit of local service. The work was done in nigh schools. With the increase in the number of pupils the number of institution has also increased.
Generally almost all the work of adult education is done free. It is done out of a sprit of social service. The importance of the work has now fully recognized all over the country. The government of the States has extended their patronage and encouragement to adult education institutions.
A Nobel Work:
Adult Education is a noble work in which even students can take active part. It is a plan of work by which everyone who knows a little can pass it on to those that know less.
It is a manner of pride that more and more Adult Education Societies are coming into existence in the different part of the country.