The Promotion of Lifelong Learning: A Study Abroad Program for Practitioners

  • Misty G. Smith Tarleton State University
  • Melody A. Loya Tarleton State University
Keywords: continuing education, lifelong learning, social work licensing, transformative learning, values and ethics, experiential learning, study abroad


For the social work profession, continuing education (CE) expectations serve to stimulate the greater purpose of professional growth, transformation, and lifelong learning. Currently, CE is delivered in a variety of formats—from paper-based methods with little to no interaction in the learning process to conferences and workshops with more face-to-face participation. An overview of the profession’s expectations of continuing education, the practice of lifelong learning, and the integration of experiential learning are discussed. Our narratives explore a unique approach to continuing education from the leader, as well as one participant’s personal reflections on being immersed in a transformative CE learning experience in Costa Rica.