Work, Employment and Society, vol.20, 2006, p.308-328
It is argued that people who suffer initial educational deprivation require lifelong learning to acquire essential basic skills, while those out of the labour force should undertake lifelong learning to prevent skill depreciation. Adult learning is seen as crucial for long-term employability, but supporting empirical evidence is sparse. This study uncovered some support for the notion that lifelong learning can enhance employment prospects. Using data from a cohort of British women, a strong association was found between adult learning (defined in terms of acquiring qualifications between the ages of 33 and 42) and the probability of women who were out of work in 1991 returning to work by 2000, even after controlling for a range of family and economic circumstances.