Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - ECU Access Only


Edith Cowan University

Degree Name

Doctor of Education


School of Education


Faculty of Education and Arts

First Supervisor

Jeremy Pagram


This Portfolio examines how adult learners at the Marketing Institute of Singapore (MIS) who are not in the mainstream educational route prefer to learn. The specific research questions were:

  1. Is adult learning distinctly different from learning in childhood;
  2. And how MIS can improve its offerings as a private education provider or PEO for adult learners enrolled in their part-time professional Sales and Marketing Diploma programme in Singapore.

In order to uncover evidence that adult learning is truly distinct and different from childhood learning, the researcher carried out an extensive literature review on books, periodicals and even speeches made by academics and/or members of Parliament in Singapore. The literature review revealed a distinct brand of adult learning called Andragogy which was a field of study propagated by respected American adult educator, Dr. Malcolm Knowles.

Primary data was gathered from a sample of 47 adult learners out of a total student population of 200 enrolled in MIS’s evening part-time Diploma in Sales and Marketing programme. The purpose of the small-scale survey was to study how adults learn and receive information from teachers at MIS. It is the contention of the present study that adult learners at MIS are different from adolescence students studying in the mainstream educational state-owned institutions and that their learning styles and need are different.

The conceptual framework of this portfolio analyses external elements like the education landscape of Singapore which is controlled by the Government of Singapore and the private education market which caters to working adults in Singapore.

The present study concludes with recommendations for further actions needed by the MIS and areas for further research.

LCSH Subject Headings

Adult learning - Singapore

Adult education – Singapore – Evaluation