Author: Mai Timmi, educator-development expert, OÜ Kasvulava

When it comes to adult learning, there is a growing shift from a knowledge-based approach to a skills-based approach. The description of skills, both in terms of the terminology involved and the approaches, have become increasingly more complex as well as equally more important over time. 

General skills are valued and highlighted, and it is not possible to cope in the world of labour without paying attention to them. General skills are important prerequisites without which more specific competencies cannot be acquired. General skills are like a foundation on which to build and balance other skills and knowledge that create the preconditions for coping with increasingly complex challenges.

It is likely that all curricula also support the development of general skills to some extent, but the issue that remains is if educators follow this consciously in their teaching, if they guide learners to pay attention to general skills in their learning and try to influence them to do so in a purposeful way.

The aim of this learning material is not so much to clarify the terminology of the subject at hand, but to look at general skills and their importance from the point of view of adult education, underlining the nuances important for specifically adult educators to understand within these concepts and to consider in their daily work.

You will find the the full version of the learning material at our Toolkit (click here).