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5 Best Places to Find Adult Education Programs for Seniors & Retirees

adult education, seniors and retirees in a class learning something new

Education is a lifelong journey and retirement is the perfect time to embrace new adventures, discover untapped passions, and continue growing. Whether you’re looking to expand your knowledge or learn a new skill, there are endless opportunities available for you. Not sure where to start? Here are 5 of the best places you can find adult education programs for seniors and retirees.


1. Online Learning

man in jean jacket on a computer

In the digital age, learning has never been more accessible. From academic subjects to hobbies and practical skills, your online options are endless. Here are the best online learning platforms to try out if going at your own pace and making your own schedule sounds appealing:

  • Udemy – Udemy offers seniors and retirees a flexible and convenient way to learn new skills or explore passions from the comfort of their own homes. Udemy has a diverse range of courses and a user-friendly platform that makes it easy to access high-quality educational content at your own pace. Courses start at around $11.99.
  • Skillshare – Skillshare is an excellent platform for those looking to learn new creative and artistic skills. It features an extensive library of courses on things like painting, drawing, photography, and more.
  • Senior Planet – Their courses cover a wide range of topics, such as computer skills, social media, online safety, and smartphone usage. Senior Planet offers both in-person and online learning opportunities for free.

2. Educational Travel

safari couple

Educational travel, which combines travel with in-depth learning opportunities has become a very popular way of travel among retirees. Here are some websites to get you started on your own unique learning endeavor!

  • Road Scholar – Road Scholar is a renowned educational travel organization catering specifically to older adults. They offer a diverse range of programs worldwide, combining educational experiences with travel adventures. From cultural immersion to history-themed trips, nature exploration, and more, Road Scholar provides enriching experiences led by expert instructors and local guides.
  • Smithsonian Journeys – Smithsonian Journeys offers educational travel programs in collaboration with the Smithsonian Institution. Learn from scholars, curators, and experts in history and culture. The site offers plenty of opportunities for discounts on early bookings and even solo travel!
  • ElderTreks – ElderTreks specializes in adventure travel for 50 and over adults. They offer tours and vacation destinations around the world.
  • National Geographic Expeditions – How does a trip with actual National Geographic experts sound? Kind of amazing, right? National Geographic Expeditions offers trips to iconic locations worldwide. Take a cruise to the Galápagos or a train through Norway. No matter what destination you choose, National Geographic experts will guide you along the way with educational insights into culture, wildlife, and conservation.

3. Community Colleges and Universities

senior education

From art and music to science and history, there’s something for everyone at your local college or university. You can choose to pursue a degree, but many schools offer continuing education opportunities for senior adults at discounted prices, or even for free! Simply check your community college or university of choice’s website and look for navigation to “adult education,” “55+ learning,” or something similar.

4. Libraries

friends looking at a computer

Libraries often host workshops, lectures, and discussion groups on a wide range of topics. And, what’s best? They’re usually free! Check your local library’s event calendars to find more info!

5. Volunteering

retiree tutoring younger students

Learning doesn’t always happen in a traditional classroom setting. Volunteering and mentorship programs offer invaluable opportunities to learn while giving back to your community. Consider volunteering at local schools, libraries, or nonprofit organizations. Mentoring younger generations is a rewarding way to share your knowledge and experiences; and they just may inspire you too!

Looking for More?

senior couple using phone together

Remember, it’s never too late to embark on a new educational adventure! If you’re looking for adult and senior education near you, then start here.


For more great articles, visit our retirement lifestyle blog:

Originally published May 18, 2023

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