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Difference Between Education and Training

class-roomTraining and education are both different facets of learning. At first, it may be difficult to tell the difference between them, especially in today’s school system, but there are major differences in training and education. Their purpose, history, and methodology are all vastly different.

Training ‘“ is undertaken in the hopes of gaining a specific skill. Generally this skill will make you more employable. These skills can be manual:
or mental:
Computer Programming

Education ‘“ is undertaken in the hopes of furthering your individual knowledge and developing your intellect. While a highly educated person is often more employable, education is not about getting a job.

Training ‘“ was originally practiced through guilds. Youngsters would be apprenticed to a master baker or builder and work under him in order to learn his trade. This was considered the proper method of learning for the lower and middle classes.

Education ‘“ has its origins in the medieval university system. Young men from wealthy families would complete a course in theology or philosophy before studying his chosen profession. The theory of education also played a large role in the concept of the Renaissance man.

Training ‘“ is usually done through specialized courses and textbooks. The learning can often be done by rote and textbooks are very prescriptive. While independent thinking at a micro level is encouraged, revolutionary innovation is often looked down on. Training generally comes in a course; when the course is completed, the training is done.

Education ‘“ is a lifelong process. Most educational learning is done through real books, rather than textbooks. The learner is encouraged to think and write about what he is reading. Any point is open to discussion and the only right answers are those that can be found in the text.

In today’s school systems, the line between education and training can be very fine indeed. Especially at the collegiate level, many areas of mental training are being passed off as education. Programming, for instance, requires a difficult and specialized skill set and needs years of training. However, its end result is employment rather than self-improvement.

1. Education focuses on creating lifelong independent thinkers whereas training focuses on skills sought after by employers.
2. Training has its roots in the guild system while education’s origins lie in universities.
3. Training uses textbooks and prescriptive methods.
4. In today’s universities highly specialized areas of training are being passed off as education.

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  1. I think Education is general – the stuff universities/schools/colleges label as ‘core curriculum’.

    Training is what one receives through whatever major discipline(s) one selects to specialize in. Professional education obviously goes here too. (The difference between professional school and advanced work in a Major/Specialist discipline is not so great, or as different, as many would have us suppose.)

    Finally, Learning is the stuff of ‘Electives’ – it is meant to be fun, interesting and open avenues for leisure pursuits in later life.

    (Incidentally, I do not believe in assigning grades for Elective courses; let alone anything other than something simple, like Pass/Fail, for the General Education, i.e. ‘core’, ones.)

  2. Yes! Finally someone writes about school.


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