EUA believes that universities have to develop their strategies and practices for widening access and lifelong learning, and also contribute actively to the policy discussion and to shaping national and European frameworks for lifelong learning.
Lifelong learning is a recognised European higher education priority, both in the context of the European Union and the Bologna Process. It is becoming an imperative due to globalisation and fast-paced economic and technological transformation, demographic changes and resulting longer and more diverse career paths, but also to ensure social equity and justice, and as a democratic value. It also plays a central for implementation of student centred learning.
European universities are increasingly responding to diverse learning needs of students and learners with very different profiles. Given also the increased participation in higher education, much more than in the past they are to be institutions of lifelong learning in addition to and in conjunction with fulfilling their three-fold mission of teaching, research and service to society.