Success Factors in Informal Learning


This is the final report of the NRDC research and development project Success factors in informal learning: young adults experiences of literacy, language and numeracy. This project was a collaboration between NRDC and the Young Adults Learning Partnership (YALP). YALP is a joint initiative between the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE) and The National Youth Agency (NYA). YALP researches and develops effective approaches to learning and personal development among young adults aged 16 to 25, who are on the margins of education, training and employment. Its purpose is to foster their capability and integration as young workers, parents and citizens.

YALP seeks a closer match between policies and programmes of learning and skills providers and the needs, interests and aspirations of young adults. In August 2003, YALP began this project, as part of NRDC’s programme of research and development, which focused on the contribution of informal1 education to the development of socially-excluded young adults’ LLN skills. The project finished in March 2005.

This research and development project builds on previous research undertaken by YALP in 2001/2 into improving the take-up and achievement of young adults in LLN provision2. This provided a snapshot of current LLN provision for 16 to 25-year olds not in formal education, employment or training (the ‘NEET’ group). It showed that the range and quality of provision varied enormously and that there was a real need for development of practices, materials and policy.

McNeil, B. & Dixon, L. (2005) Success factors in informal learning: young adults’ experiences of literacy, language and numeracy. NRDC: London