Viewing science learning as lifelong and lifewide means considering all the aspects and opportunities for building understanding of science. Crucially, lifelong learning has the potential to be cumulative, layered, and connected. As learners encounter scientific phenomena, they can regularly refine, strengthen, and broaden their understanding and engagement across time and context.

Science learning is considered lifelong because people of all ages, from children to elders, can engage in learning experiences. In addition, out-of-school science learning is considered lifewide because it occurs across time, social settings, institutions, and geographic locations and encompasses a wide range of science explorations and phenomena. This entry first looks at the ways in which people participate in science learning throughout their lives, the role out-of-school learning plays in addressing inequities in ...

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