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Digitalization of Education – The How and Why of Lifelong Learning

Research Results Concerning Online-Further Education in Tourism. Significance – Expectation – Utilisation

Lars Rettig

More and more parts of our lives are being digitally enriched. The field of education is no exception. The learning and working worlds are changing, and therefore also the requirements for education, continuing education and further education. At the same time, the period in which knowledge is up-to-date is ever shorter. Thus the ability to do Lifelong Learning is not only decisive for the success of the individual, but also for the sustainable existence of companies, economic sectors and whole regions/destinations. On the basis of psychological, pedagogical and economical concepts the author deals with the How and Why of learning. Based on this he investigates the significance of Online-Further Education in Tourism by means of qualitative expert interviews.

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2 Definition of the Terms Education, Further Education, Continuing Education and Lifelong Learning

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In this section, the most important terms will be defined in the context of Lifelong Learning. These include education, further education, continuing education and the term Lifelong Learning itself.

2.1 Education

The concept of initial education is used both in the field of vocational training as well as academic education. In vocational training, an apprenticeship provides the necessary skills, knowledge and abilities for the exercising of a qualified professional activity. In addition, they enable them to acquire the necessary professional experience.1 Trainees in the field of tourism are, for example, service personnel in the field of transport, trainees in event services and management, in the catering sector and in the hotel industry.2

The academic training is used to build specialist competences (knowledge and skills) and personal competences (social competency and independence).3 In the field of academic education, the initial education not only refers to a basic education, such as a Bachelor’s degree. A Master’s degree directly following the undergraduate studies – and therefore referred to as consecutive – is also a part of initial academic education.4 An up-to-date overview of tourism studies in Germany can be found on the website Hochschulkompass (www.hochschulkompass.de), an overview of the locations can be seen in Figure 1.5 An alternative to the free initial education and fee-paying further education is provided by the idea of the education-account model, which ← 21 | 22 → supports and promotes education through the accumulation of capital, independent of when the education took place.6

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