Learning to manage the self and the hidden injuries of migration

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2 Citations (Scopus)


Global migration is increasing to unprecedented levels, especially from non-OECD countries to OECD countries. One of the new challenges for lifelong learning is that migrants are expected to be responsible for ensuring that they have the capabilities and learning to adapt to new contexts but qualifications and experiences obtained in one national system are often not recognised in different national systems. This article draws on an empirical study from Australia to show how adults’ informal learning can support skilled migrants’ career adaptability and employment. The findings from this qualitative research show how migrants’ participation in social networks and learning communities, through both paid and voluntary work, are integral to learning to manage their self and lead to transformation learning and settlement. But learning to adapt to new contexts is emotional as well as cognitive work. When migrants hold multiple identities, transformation learning has negative sides. These findings reveal the hidden injuries of migration and a continuing need for adult educators to support informal learning in workplaces and communities to encourage culturally diverse groups to learn to live and work together.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-176
Number of pages20
JournalStudies in the Education of Adults
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2017


  • emotional learning
  • lifelong learning
  • Skilled migration
  • transformative learning

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