Museums as Centres for Lifelong Learning

Programme Category: Archaeology
Type:Seminar and Field Visit
Date:28-29 August 2013
Venue: Hanoi Daewoo Hotel, Hanoi, Vietnam


While education is known to commonly take place in schools and universities, it is also a lifelong process. For children and adults alike, the process of education, the pursuit of acquiring knowledge, whether personally, academically or professionally motivated, can take shape through various activities, places and situations, whether one wishes to learn a new language, an artistic technique, or to enhance existing skills. The recent establishment of SEAMEO CELLL Regional Centre for Lifelong Learning in 2012 is a testament to the importance and growing need for lifelong learning.

While lifelong learning is often associated with the acquisition of employable skills, such as learning English or a computer skill, it also includes the personal and/or professional motivation to acquire knowledge in the fields of the arts, history, culture, and science. Outside of formal training, museums can play an important role in this process. In addition to being dedicated to conservation, museums are public sources of information. As institutions that care for and display collections of artefacts and objects from the past and the present, museums have the capacity to become important mediums in artistic, historical, cultural and scientific education.

The process of lifelong learning in museums may take place through activities and strategies, whether formal or informal, and may be organized by museum professionals themselves, teachers, as well as personally and/or professionally motivated individuals. As a result of the role and potential of museums in the process of education, it is important to discuss how and why museums can be efficiently utilized as centres for lifelong learning.

Background Information

On the occasion of SEAMEO SPAFA’s 28th Governing Board Meeting, SEAMEO SPAFA organized a one-day seminar on ‘Museums as Centres for Lifelong Learning’ in association with SEAMEO CELLL Regional Centre for Lifelong Learning and local museums in Vietnam, which are regionally known for their professionalism and success in attracting the general public. In addition to promoting bilateral collaboration between SEAMEO SPAFA and SEAMEO CELLL, this seminar invited participants from museums and from the Ministries of Education of SEAMEO member countries, as well as university students from the Faculty of Museum Studies at the Hanoi University of Culture. The programme emphasized the role of museums in lifelong learning, providing the participants with concepts and methods practised in Vietnam, Malaysia, and the Philippines.


1.Highlight the importance of lifelong learning in general and the role of museums in this process as centres for education in the arts, history, culture and science.

2. Provide concepts and methods in utilizing museums as centres for lifelong learning.

3.  Promote ties between SEAMEO centres, museums, and educational institutions and bodies.


Publication of presentations from the seminar on the SEAMEO SPAFA website (to be published when website capacities are increased)


1. Participants acquired an understanding and enhanced awareness of the role of museums in lifelong learning.
2. Participants learned how some SEAMEO countries utilize museums as public centres for lifelong learning.
3. An established network for future collaboration between SEAMEO SPAFA, SEAMEO CELLL, museums and educators

Post-Activity Report

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