Study Learn Grow

Learning and Education: Know the Differences

Date Added: 04/10/2021

Blog Image - Learning and Education: Know the Differences

Although learning is one part of education there is a big difference between the two. Learning is a cognitive process by which people acquire skills and knowledge while education is a structured procedure for imparting knowledge in formal settings.

Plato and Rousseau were the world’s most famous educationists and their thoughts were catalysts to the advancement of human civilization. 


Learning in the new century 

As a basic instinct, learning is inbuilt in all individuals. But education is something that is associated with some stages in life. Education comes to an individual from an external source. But learning happens within the inner self.

Learning is an ongoing process and an informal one too unlike very formal education. Learning is a constant process from birth till death.

The demands of the 21st century are driven by knowledge and technology. So the new-century skills lead all learning environments. There are core subjects plus new literacy areas like systems thinking, interpersonal and self-directional skills. 

Approaches to teaching in a 21st-century education are broad and flexible depending on the needs of students. There is an emphasis on inquiry, conceptual understanding, teamwork, and collaboration. It aims to teach students thinking, research, communication, social, and self-management skills. 


Top learning theories

There are many learning theories

  • Behaviorism 
  • Cognitivism 
  • Constructivism 
  • Brain-based 
  • Humanist 


Learning entails earning knowledge with experience while education is all about the knowledge that comes from formal teaching settings.

Education is well organised, whereas learning evolves from an individual’s perceptions and is informal. For individuals, learning is a lifelong process while education is limited to certain phases of life such as schooling, colleges or higher education in universities, etc. Those are temporary.


Education enlightens life

Learning refers to an intellectual process of acquiring new skills and knowledge, through instruction or experience. Education is an enlightening process of receiving and providing knowledge, through systematic instruction tactics.

The processes of education deliver knowledge, values, skills and attitudes, beneficial to an individual. Education passes on knowledge, values and skills from one generation to another. Education also imparts values, and attitudes making individuals better and responsible persons. On the contrary, learning is more about absorbing knowledge, and skills with a practical emphasis.

Education shapes unique perspectives about life and is the key to succeeding socially and economically in life. On a larger scale, education serves as a bond of national unity in any country. 

Education is an indispensable tool in achieving success in society. Education also reduces the pressures of life. More knowledge more will be the opportunities better possibilities for personal growth. 


Tech intervention

In the education sector, the rise of technology has made processes innovative. Tech intervention is also a corrective in the system of education by addressing all its downsides. The big flaw in the learning methods in formal education has been its passive processes. That is getting the correction.

The scenario of the teacher walking into a classroom and standing for the students disseminating the knowledge and students sitting static and absorbing the “pearls” without meaningful participation has changed forever.

Technology has made the learning process interactive and immersive. Today students learn about lunar exploration not by watching the blurred images of moon surface on textbooks but they flip NASA’s Moon Toolkit to get a vivid idea.


Technology in education 

From a 21st-century point of view, tech-enabled learning or TEL has strengthened students to engage with multiple texts in multiple modes of literacy such as the following.

  • Information 
  • Media 
  • Digital sources 


TEL sees to it how technology can be applied to various levels of education. The better part of TEL is the care it takes to make sure technology is used by educators will not replay old habits or the existing patterns. It wants enhanced quality, processes, and practices. The goal is to empower learners and use learning as an active and dynamic process.

In TEL many new concepts are also at work

  • Mobile learning 
  • Citizen science 
  • Openness 
  • Learning at scale 


Many benefits

In the TEL perspective, a quest for efficiency exists in all processes as time-effective, sustainable and cost-effective.

Education is re-designed as a package of many learning opportunities for nurturing a unique reality. There are also parallel efforts to improve processes and outcomes while aiming for transformation in ongoing processes while introducing new processes.

Learning goals of education in a 21st-century classroom is linked to many of the above concepts. The educational environment is for effective learning and student-led learning and inquiry.

The teacher plays the role of a facilitator and the relationship between teacher and learner is more of a partnership.

Teachers of the 21st-century encourage students' collaboration sparking curiosity and triggering ambition and desire to learn. 

The program Partnership for 21st Century Skills (P21) is an example of how the modern learning experience will remain in the frame of the technology age’s preferences. 

It recommends focusing more on core subjects such as English, Maths, Geography, History, and Civics along with 21st-century themes such as global awareness, health literacy, environmental literacy, entrepreneurial literacy, and domain knowledge on financial and business sectors. 

One new learning method used in skill development is group learning or thematic projects that are inquiry-based collaborative addressing real-world issues and questions.


Making education affordable 

Affordability impacts educational opportunities. The rising cost of higher education has been a big barrier to equitable access as reiterated in Mark Perry’s “Chart of the Century.” 

Tuition fees in universities and colleges are jumping and it abets student borrowing and landing them in huge financial debt. The data on early 2021 says student debt in the US is more than $1.7 trillion.

The expanding role of technology in education and learning can be a leveler and make learning affordable. High costs amount to a denial of education to the deserving. 

More than in-person education the technology-driven online education is more affordable where costs are lower than university fees.

The cushion of a wide range of payment options is giving better budgeting. With its lower monetary investment better options to earn knowledge and certifications, it is the bliss of technology as a leveler in education too.

Study Learn Grow

Related Pages