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Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in the school

Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in the school


  • Meaning of Education and significance for humans.
  • Role of learning: Learning is a process which results in a more or less permanent modification of behaviour as a result of practice or experience.
  • Distinguish between education and schooling/learning → Only positive or desirable learning contributes to the process of education while negative or undesirable learning is not considered a part of education.
  • The Importance of Lifelong Learning and how education inculcates this.
  • Conclusion


  • Education has different contextual meaning – the economist would see education as a commodity in which it is profitable for the community to invest. Sociologists would tell people that education is a socializing force, Education as a Spiritual Pursuit: According to the Upanishads, “Education is that whose end product is salvation”
  • Nevertheless, education is there in all of the above and each one is linked to the process of education, yet it lies above all these.
  • It is believed that education should prepare individuals for active participation in a democratic society.

Historical Dimension

  • Education is derived from  – “Educare”, which refers to “to bring up’ or “to nourish”.
  • In India, the concept of education is traced back to the “Gurukula Parampara” which developed in ancient times.

Distinguish between education and schooling/learning

  1. Value system/ wisdom comes from experience while learning teaches academic knowledge and information. Example –  only after seeing pain, death and suffering  Siddhartha became Buddha.  
  2. True education extends beyond memorization and tests, leaving a lasting imprint on an individual’s character, values, and ability to navigate the complexities of life. E.g. NEP fosters foundational learning away from rote learning.
  3. Education exposes individuals to diverse cultures, histories, and perspectives, nurturing cultural and social awareness. This understanding promotes tolerance, inclusivity, and the ability to thrive in a globalized world. 

The success of renowned entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, who dropped out of college, highlights how the problem-solving skills and innovative thinking acquired in their educational journey laid the foundation for their groundbreaking careers.

The Importance of Lifelong Learning and how education inculcates this?

  • Adaptation to Change: In a rapidly changing world.
  • Personal Growth: Lifelong learning fosters personal growth and self-improvement.
  • Career Advancement: Lifelong learners are often more competitive in the job market. 
  • Problem Solving: Lifelong learning enhances critical thinking and problem-solving abilities.
  • Cognitive Health: Continuous learning helps maintain cognitive health and may delay cognitive decline associated with aging. 
  • Increased Confidence: Acquiring new knowledge and skills boosts self-confidence and self-esteem. 
  • Enhanced Communication: Lifelong learning can improve communication skills, including written and verbal communication.
  • Social Engagement: Lifelong learners often engage in social activities related to their interests, fostering connections and a sense of belonging within communities of learners.
  • Innovation and Creativity: Exposure to diverse ideas and experiences through lifelong learning can inspire innovation and creativity.

Way Forward: John Dewey’s 7 principles: Experiential Learning, Child-Centered Education, Learning by Doing, Integration of Subjects, Democratic Education, Continuous Learning, Problem-Centered Curriculum, Social Interaction.

Conclusion: Aristotle advocated for a balanced education that included the cultivation of moral virtues, intellectual virtues, and practical skills. In essence, education endures as a beacon that guides individuals throughout their lives, illuminating the path toward personal growth, societal progress, and the betterment of humanity as a whole.

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