What is non formal education and why it is important


   What is non formal education and why it is important

Differences between formal, informal and non formal education

The term “non formal education” and its recognition on a global scale came about in the 1960s, when consolidated educational institutions had to face an economical crisis and received questions about their lacking ability to adapt to a new society.

Formal education has a hierarchical structure, organised in chronological order within the education system. It starts in primary school and ends in university. Moreover, it includes programmes or courses dedicated to technical and professional education.

Informal education is the vital process whereby every individual acquires attitudes, values, skills and knowledge. These are gained through daily experiences and from influences or resources in your surroundings, whether it’s from your family and friends or from the media.

Non formal education is all organised education activities that are outside the formally   established system. It can work separately or within a larger activity, according to the   participants or learning goals.

Characteristics and importance of non formal education

Non formal education isn’t a replacement to formal education, which is key and fundamental to the growth of the person, however, it can compliment it by covering needs or certain aspects that the regulated institution lack.

UNESCO, for example, emphasises the flexibility of non formal education and how it allows for more personalised learning to be developed for each person. In fact, this would be the most ideal model for them.

How is it flexible? Non formal education is open to any age, origin and personal interest. Moreover, it’s a relatively voluntary type of education, with diverse teaching methods and its end goal isn’t a degree, but rather pure learning.