Non-Formal Education for Students

What is non-formal education?


Non-formal education can be described as learning that takes place outside of formal learning environments, such as a classroom, but instead occurs within a kind of organisational framework. It arises from a person’s conscious decision to learn and master a particular skill, activity, or an area of knowledge.


Non-formal education is not governed or assessed, therefore a person engaging in non-formal education is has consciously formed an intention to learn and improve.


Non-formal education, GiLE

Image from by @priscilladupreez

It usually occurs in community settings, for example sports clubs, music clubs, societies, programmes and so on.

The activities or courses done in these community settings are usually planned, but not structured and are conducted by professional learning facilitators such as volunteers, youth trainers or youth leaders, sports coaches, drama and music teachers.


The wonderful aspect about non-formal education is that it harnesses a person’s intrinsic desire to learn and it allows them the freedom to acquire knowledge in their preferred manner. When this happens, a person usually self-reflects and can identify certain skills or knowledge that they are lacking or need to improve. Being able to self-reflect and self-assess is essential, because you are able to identify your strengths and weaknesses and you can use non-formal education to either develop your strengths even more, or improve on your weaknesses.


The benefits of non-formal education


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Thomas Banza

Article Writer & Content Contributor

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The opinions expressed in this article/publication are those of the authors. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions or views of GiLE or its members.

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