National Education Association

Depending on the system, schools for this period, or a part of it, may be called secondary or high schools, gymnasiums, lyceums, middle schools, colleges, or vocational schools. The exact meaning of any of these terms varies from one system to another. The exact boundary between primary and secondary education also varies from country to country and even within them but is generally around the seventh to the tenth year of schooling.

The mental health of students has been greatly impacted due to the pandemic. It is estimated that three in ten participating in school at home have had their emotional and mental health negatively impacted. Similarly, the social lives of students have also been upended and this has been detrimental to the health of students worldwide which has also negatively impacted educational quality.

Education is also used to refer to the process or institution of teaching in general. Our community comes to us seeking tools to help answer everyday questions. Managing school finances Resources, templates, and financial guidance to support the governance of school finances and financial reporting. Choose from our library of over 35k interactive curriculum-aligned activities.

Closely related to the distinction between formal and informal education is that between conscious education, which is done with a clear purpose in mind, and unconscious education, which occurs on its own without being consciously planned or guided. This may happen in part through the personality of teachers and adults by having indirect effects on the development of the student’s personality. Another categorization depends on the age group of the learners and includes childhood education, adolescent education, adult education, and elderly education. The distinction can also be based on the subject, encompassing fields like science education, language education, art education, religious education, and physical education.

  • With the passing of NCLB in the United States , teachers must be highly qualified.
  • Globally, in 2008, around 89% of children aged six to twelve were enrolled in primary education, and this proportion was rising.
  • Some theories propose that all individuals benefit from a variety of learning modalities, while others suggest that individuals may have preferred learning styles, learning more easily through visual or kinesthetic experiences.
  • Usually, formal education takes place in a school environment with classrooms of multiple students learning together with a trained, certified teacher of the subject.
  • It spans the period between the typically universal compulsory, primary education to the optional, selective tertiary, “postsecondary”, or “higher” education of ISCED 5 and 6 (e.g. university), and the ISCED 4 Further education or vocational school.
  • Check for understanding at strategic steps in the lessons you design with interactive Quiz.

Instead, the entire environment and all activities are frequently viewed as school and classes, and many or all adults act as teachers. As societies grow more complex, however, the quantity of knowledge to be passed on from one generation to the next becomes more than any one person can know, and, hence, there must evolve more selective and efficient means of cultural transmission. The outcome is formal education—the school and the specialist called the teacher. Researchers in educational neuroscience investigate the neural mechanisms of reading, numerical cognition, attention, and their attendant difficulties including dyslexia, dyscalculia, and ADHD as they relate to education. Several academic institutions around the world are beginning to devote resources to the establishment of educational neuroscience research.

Those who have higher scores of intelligence-metrics tend to perform better at school and go on to higher levels of education. This effect is also observable in the opposite direction, in that education increases measurable intelligence. Studies have shown that while educational attainment is important in predicting intelligence in later life, intelligence at 53 is more closely correlated to intelligence at 8 years old than to educational attainment. In informal learning, there is often a reference person, a peer or expert, to guide the learner. If learners have a personal interest in what they are informally being taught, learners tend to expand their existing knowledge and conceive new ideas about the topic being learned.

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Some governmental bodies, like the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra in Finland, have proposed compulsory lifelong education. The OLPC foundation, a group out of MIT Media Lab and supported by several major corporations, has a stated mission to develop a $100 laptop for delivering educational software. The conventional merit-system degree is currently not as common in open education as it is in campus universities, although some open universities do already offer conventional degrees such as the Open University in the United Kingdom. Presently, many of the major open education sources offer their own form of certificate. Community colleges offer another option at this transitional stage of education. They provide nonresidential junior college courses to people living in a particular area.

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Within this essential curriculum, religious instruction takes the most prominent place. A primitive person, whose culture is the totality of his universe, has a relatively fixed sense of cultural continuity and timelessness. The model of life is relatively static and absolute, and it is transmitted from one generation to another with little deviation.


During the High Middle Ages, Chartres Cathedral operated the famous and influential Chartres Cathedral School. Founded in 1088, the University of Bologne is considered the first, and the oldest continually operating university. The education sector is fully integrated into society, through interactions with numerous stakeholders and other sectors. These include parents, local communities, religious leaders, NGOs, stakeholders involved in health, child protection, justice and law enforcement , media and political leadership. Open education has been called the biggest change in the way people learn since the printing press.

Educational psychology both draws from and contributes to cognitive science and the learning sciences. In universities, departments of educational psychology are usually housed within faculties of education, possibly accounting for the lack of representation of educational psychology content in introductory psychology textbooks (Lucas, Blazek, & Raley, 2006). Research and data indicate future environmental conditions will be “far more dangerous than currently believed”, with a review concluding that the current challenges that humanity faces are enormous. They also find that critical thought, social responsibility, health and safety are often neglected. According to UNESCO, “for a country to meet the basic needs of its people, the teaching of science is a strategic imperative”. Instructors in primary and secondary institutions are often called teachers, and they direct the education of students and might draw on many subjects like reading, writing, mathematics, science and history.