Adult Learning and Change: An Autobiographical Portrait of a Chinese Woman in Canada

Chun Ge Liu

Abstract


The themes of adult learning, cross-cultural learning, and transformative learning are common to many continuing educators working at universities across Canada. In this essay, I narrate my experiences as a mature, adult learner returning to university. Following a literature review and discussion of methodology, I begin this autobiographical portrait with a description of my initial education and life experiences in China. From this foundation, I describe and interpret my cross-cultural sojourn as a graduate student in Canada.

This sojourn was both happy and sad, both empowering and disempowering. My story is one of learning—learning as an adult, learning in a cross-cultural setting, and learning that ultimately had a transformative impact on how I view myself and my world. Through exploring my own experiences with learning and change, I hope to offer readers of the Canadian Journal of Continuing Education a unique opportunity for insight into personal processes that are difficult to truly understand at a theoretical level alone.


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