Historical Antecedents Shaping Concept of Andragogy: A Comparison of Sources and Roots

John Henschke


Although there is not one standard definition of the term "andragogy" in any one country or the numerous countries in which it has some recognition, andragogy is becoming a rallying term to identify theory, research and practice in the realm of adult education in some countries around the world, while finding resistance in others. Probing into and understanding some of the historical antecedents -- sources, roots and perceptions (or misperceptions) -- which have shaped and continue to shape varying conceptions of andragogy, may help to clarify and articulate a definition and direction for the further study of andragogy as an important field of inquiry as well as an important scientific endeavor. A comparison will be made between the contexts and experience bases out of which this issue and term is addressed.