Continuing education is designed primarily for those wishing to pursue further studies relevant to their professions. It enables professionals to procure a new license, as well as continue to uphold it, as required by their profession. Individuals who may have discontinued their education are able to pursue their studies through various continuing education programs.
General continuing education has the same implications as adult learning. It usually pertains to subjects such as literacy, English verbal communication skills, and curriculums such as occupational training or GED training. The syllabus is drawn up keeping in mind the needs of mature learners, specifically students who are already past the usual undergraduate college or university age. It is assumed that a continuing education student has completed basic schooling or some form of formal education.
Continuing education is commonly available through a division or a school of continuing education. These schools are sometimes given recognition as extensions of a university or are treated as an extension of a school. In the United States, community colleges also offer these non-credit courses. This means enrolling in non-credit-granting classes, for individual as well as non-professional growth. Continuing education requires part-time enrollment in college or university credit-granting lessons.
The need for a licensed education arises because governing bodies in numerous fields, such as law and medicine, have made it compulsory for professionals to hold licenses in order to practice a particular line of work. The objective of continuing education courses is to encourage professionals to further their education and keep abreast of latest developments in their field. Apart from institutes, a few standard colleges also offer some of these courses.
Continuing education is imparted in both the conventional classroom as well as in the distance-learning mode. A combination of all of these methods may be used for a systematic continuing education course or agenda. For many individuals, continuing education signifies an opportunity to achieve their aspirations, update their knowledge and acquire degrees that they may have missed earlier on in their life.