Modes of Education Formal, Non-formal, Informal & Distance Education

Wed, 11/19/2014 - 07:38 -- Umar Farooq

Education, as it has been rightly said by philosophers, is not the name of a particular activity or process. It is a sum of different activities and processes which mainly bring into focus the social aspects of human being. Education is not something static, but a continuous and life long process. It is bound up with human race since its birth and shall continue to function as long as the human race exists. So education has always been very highly valued and has been a major force behind the social and cultural life of every society. Education signifies man's supreme position in society. It enables the individuals to develop their capacities which empowered them to control the environment to fulfil their possibilities. Physical and mental maturity of the individual also depends upon his interactions and adjustments to the situation and circumstances.

This multi-directional gradual growth of an individual to effectively interact with the environment does not take place in isolation. In this endeavor certain individuals, groups and institutions contribute significantly. All these and other such influencing factors and conditions may be called the agencies of education or modes of education. Knowledge about self, the immediate physical and social environment and the world includes the influences of varied experiences a human being undergoes in his immediate environment.

The very first learning of a person takes place in his family environment. He learns habits, attitude, skills and new things by listening observing and doing in informal situation first by living among the family members and then from his environment he interacts with. This learning deliberately does not take place in a formal situation. Such learning is generally called informal education. This natural learning is .usually the result of social and physical surroundings in which an individual lives. Most of one's education takes place unconsciously in an incidental manner.

When "education is deliberately planned, chosen and employed by the community for the welfare of its coming generations", it is called formal education. It encompasses the existing structured school, college and university system.


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