Final considerations

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Employability and Phd Curricula 113

reference to the importance of the development of employability of PhD students either in the Italian or the Portuguese PhD programmes.

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that PhD students working in adult education and lifelong learning will need in the future. Why do pathways towards professionalization in Italy, Malaysia and Portugal exhibit so many differences? What are the actual effects of these different approaches? Is there a common skillset at a global level?

Although employability is a very urgent issue, the strategies adopted vary strongly according to the geographical location, almost as if the nature of adult education has a different meaning in different places. According to the results col-lected, the different characteristics of each country lead to universities developing specific practices in the field of adult education; consequently, they impart PhD students in adult education with different skills.

The link between curricula, employability and didactics is very important and strong, yet it is not recognized in the same way. This results in the different con-struction of skillsets in the PhDs. Until similarities exist at a strategic and political level, PhD mobility around the world will be limited, since qualifications will not be recognized in the same way.

Until universities begin to discuss what the role of an adult educator at a global level is, they will not be able to draw up comparable curricula. As a consequence, the employability of PhD graduates on a global level will be impossible, and the professional identity of these specialists in adult education will not be recognized in the same way all over the world.

This will impact on the understanding of the paradigms of higher education in the context of a European common education space. Accordingly, we should ob-serve PhD curricula from a different perspective, in order to allow PhD students to develop all the skills (such as reflection as well as critical and communication skills) that are needed for the future professionals of adult education on a global level.

There is some hope that PhD curricula will improve in the future, and that these changes will not only have a positive effect on the commitment of teaching staff, but also adopt a new political and strategic common approach. If this is the case, legislation may vary according to the European or Malaysian context, but there will always be a long-term vision for the construction of professionalization.


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