Adult Education Academy

Dr. Lisa Breitschwerdt

Dr. Lisa Breitschwerdt is a research associate at the Professorship for Adult and Continuing Education at the University of Würzburg. She works on digitalisation and professionalisation in adult and higher education, didactics and methods of teaching and learning and dialogical perspectives in adult education research.


  • Professionalisation in adult education
  • Digitisation in adult education and university teaching
  • Didactics and methodology in adult and contiuning education
  • Participatory and dialogical perspectives in adult education research

CG4: Domains of adult learning and education and logics of action: adult educators and hybrid professionalism

Co-Moderator: Prof. Paula Guimarães Prof. Lucas Pacheco Campos

The field of adult learning and education is traditionally very heterogeneous and intersects with many other fields (e.g. cultural field, education in enterprises, integration into the labour market). This impacts in the lack of clarity about the nature of the job profiles of adult educators and about the concrete activities they carry out in the different domains of practice that can be found in different countries. Adult learning and education is a differentiated and heterogeneous field of practice, including several domains, such as liberal/non-formal education, social development activities, second-chance education and vocational education and training, among others. The heterogeneity and differentiation of the field of practice, characterised by a wide range of domains, place special demands on the professionalism of adult educators. Adult educators work at interfaces where they have to mediate between different logics of action. According to Freidson (2001) three ideal typical logics of action can be identified. The logic of professionalism emphasises the autonomy in professional acting based on a specific expertise and refers to the traditional discourse about professionalisation in adult learning and education. The logic of bureaucracy refers to classical mechanisms of administration and comprises perspectives of hierarchy, governance, control and standardisation. These are closely related to educational policy and governmental structures imposed by public bodies, e.g. through defined standards that must be met by adult education organisations. The logic of economy includes the perspective on the free market, where the idea of supply and demand guides action and influences the planning and development of adult education offerings. The ways adult educators understand their job and the work that they achieved denote interdepended logics, a “hybrid professionalism” (Noordegraaf, 2007, 2015) that is to be developed and promoted in the specific organisational and social contexts of adult learning and education domains of practice (Egetenmeyer et al. 2019).


  1. Breitschwerdt, L.; Beu, V.; Egetenmeyer, R. & Grafe, S. (2022). Digital Media in Adult and Continuing Education in Germany. Excellence And Innovation In Learning And Teaching, 7(2), 5-22. https://doi.org/10.3280/exioa2-2022oa15075

  2. Breitschwerdt, L. & Egetenmeyer, R. (2022). Dialogorientierte Forschung in der Erwachsenenbildung/Weiterbildung. Theoretische und forschungsmethodische Überlegungen zur Gestaltung des Wissenschafts-Praxis-Verhältnisses. bildungsforschung (2). 1-22.

  3. Breitschwerdt, L.; Thees, A. & Egetenmeyer, R. (2022). Digitale Medien in der Erwachsenenbildung/Weiterbildung. Magazin erwachsenenbildung.at. Das Fachmedium für Forschung, Praxis und Diskurs. Ausgabe, 44-45. Online: https://erwachsenenbildung.at/magazin/ausgabe-44-45/

  4. Breitschwerdt, L.; Lechner, R. & Egetenmeyer, R. (2021): The “new professionalism” in adult and continuing education – a multi-level perspective. Journal Of Adult Education And Community Services (JAECS), 2(3), 483-490. (Zweitveröffentlichung)

  5. Staab, M.; Kröner, S.; Breitschwerdt, L. & Egetenmeyer, R. (2021).  On The Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership INTALL. Journal Of Adult Education And Community Services (JAECS), 2(3), 21-29. (Zweitveröffentlichung)

  6. Breitschwerdt, L. & Egetenmeyer, R. (in Vorb.). The International Adult Education Academy and its contribution to professionalisation in adult education. In V. Boffo, & R. Egetenmeyer (Eds.), Re-thinking Adult Education Research. Firenze University Press.

  7. Breitschwerdt, L. & Egetenmeyer, R. (2022). Erwachsenenbildung/Weiterbildung. In H. Reinders, Dagmar Bergs-Winkels, Isabell Post & Annette Prochnow (Hrsg.), Empirische Bildungsforschung. Eine elementare Einführung (S. 127-150). Wiesbaden: SpringerVS.

  8. Breitschwerdt, L. & Sen, V. (2017). Implementing National Qualifications Frameworks: Difficulties in Cambodia and Germany. In: R. Egetenmeyer & M. Fedeli (eds.), Adult Education and Work Contexts: International Perspectives and Challenges. Comparative Perspectives from the 2017 Würzburg Winter School (pp. 101-121). Frankfurt et. al.: Peter Lang.

  9. Scheffel, M. & Breitschwerdt, L. (2017). Interdisziplinäre Kompetenzen fördern und evaluieren. In M. Görtler, S. Bauer, H. Ellner, K. Oeder & M. Scheffel (Hrsg.), Subjektorientierung, Lehren und Lernen (S. 159-177). Norderstedt: BoD.

  10. Breitschwerdt, L. (2022). Professionalitätsentwicklung in der Erwachsenenbildung/Weiterbildung als Mehrebenen-Phänomen. Eine qualitative Einzelfallanalyse am Beispiel einer Organisation der beruflichen Weiterbildung. VS Springer.

  11. Bender, W., Breitschwerdt, L. & Scheffel, M. (2016). Grenzgänge. Interdisziplinäre Kompetenzen fördern und evaluieren. Wissenschaftliche Begleitstudie zum Projekt „Der Coburger Weg“ (2011-2016) der Hochschule Coburg. Göttingen: Cuvillier Verlag.



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