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Abstract

This study is of a theoretical-conceptual nature and is a partial outcome of the research project VEGA MŠVVaŠ SR and SAV no. 1/0176/15. It deals with one of the problems currently faced by educational theory and practice, i.e. the foreign language education of seniors. The trend is typical for many EU member states, since it results from the needs of a modern society. In addition to strategic documents, programs and legislation which binds the Slovak Republic to create conditions for lifelong education, including foreign language education, the authors are more closely preoccupied with specificities and possibilities of the language education of seniors, which are explained on a comparative basis with the language education of children and youth. Even though in literature one can find results of many substantial empirical research projects devoted to foreign language education of children and youth, research into the education of adults and seniors in the area of foreign languages falls behind considerably. A sufficient platform for the methodology of language education of adults and seniors in Slovakia has not been created either, if compared with the methodology of language education of younger age categories. This shortcoming is often quite noticeable in practice. The study attempts to pay adequate attention to the analysis of selected teaching styles specific for adult and senior age as well as teaching methods which may be used in the language education of seniors.

Abstract

Aim: This article reports upon a research study whose aim was to evaluate the running of an active ageing programme for older persons residing in a care home for older persons in Malta.

Method: The research study opted for a multi-method research design. The first phase consisted of carrying out observation of the active ageing programme over a two-month period. The second phase was conducting semi-structured interviews with participants and facilitators.

Results: First, that for active ageing programme in care homes to be successful the activities must be meaningful to residents. Second, that active ageing programme in care homes has the potential to improve the levels of social and emotional wellbeing, whilst also having benefits for facilitators. Finally, that active ageing programmes include a number of challenges - namely, further training for all staff in gerontological and geragogical principles, overlooking family relatives, and enabling even frail residents to join in the activities.

Conclusion. Active ageing policies should go beyond a ‘third age’ lens in their endeavour to improve the quality of life of incoming and current older persons and focus more assiduously on frail and vulnerable elders. The key factor in organising active ageing programmes in a care home that are successful in enabling good quality interaction is the ability of planners to have insight on the subjective world of residents so that they gain the sensitivity and skills to coordinate activities that are meaningful to residents.

Abstract

Introduction:The authors of this paper base their research on the following assumption: the development of both geragogic education (older adult education) and profession is conditioned by the existence of a study program of geragogy provided by departments of geragogy created at universities (as public institutions of higher education). The fact remains that a qualified training of geragogues is absent in the Slovak conditions.

Purpose:When compiling a graduate profile, inclusive of a list of competences that a geragogue should possess, a range of specific local circumstances needs to be taken into consideration. Subsequently, it is necessary to define a position of a geragogue. Geragogue is a professional working in the field of senior education, just like a pedagogue or an adult educator work in their fields. It is also important to identify and accentuate the philosophical and social context in which these professionals are confronted with the demands of today’s society, in a form of a society based on knowledge, questions of the ongoing social changes and defining the meaning of life.

Results:The task of creating the department and program of geragogy is formulated as a social demand of the time, debunking the current myth of the crisis of universities. In history, a university was a vital place where the values serving social integration emerged. It was also a practice field for the educators to train so they could spread these values and transform them into social skills.

Conclusion:In the conclusion, the authors propose key areas of undergraduate training of geragogues, including the definition of institutional anchoring, with the goal to contribute to ongoing professional discussion and to creation of the department and the program of geragogy.