Informal learning is a late-20th-century term referring to widespread practices of knowledge and skill acquisition undertaken by individuals and groups studying and experimenting outside formal settings and instruction. Also known by other terms such as experiential, transactional, or life-long, these learning practices have prevailed throughout human history. Apprenticeships have fostered the individual talents of hunters, blacksmiths, illustrators, printers, ironworkers, mechanics, and medical technicians. Stories of autodidacts and self-taught geniuses populate the annals of religion, science, and the arts. The creative productions of self-taught craftsmen and artists fill museums and theaters of the world. Common household conveniences as well as technologies behind power supply, communication, and transportation have resulted from the independent experimentation of individuals who took their curiosity and drive beyond what they had learned ...

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