Introducing the Academy for Lifelong Learning Toronto

For more than 25 years, the Academy for Lifelong Learning Toronto has attracted members who are intellectually curious, interested in exploring and understanding the world, sharing ideas, and meeting others who share their interests. Members of the Academy enjoy:

  • The convenience of attending events on weekdays, at centrally located venues
  • Workshops on a range of topics in the arts, sciences, and current affairs - generally offered every two weeks.  Workshops are led by member-facilitators, and topics are researched and presented by members of the class
  • Academy Forums – offered alternate weeks Sept. through Nov. and Jan. through Mar., these two-hour sessions provide an opportunity for members and guests to hear presentations on a wide range of topics and to interact with one another and outside experts in an informal learning environment
  • Spring Talks – held Wednesday mornings through Apr. and May, well-known experts present thought-provoking talks on a broad range of topics for members and guests
  • Exploring the city – members meet weekly throughout the autumn and spring to explore Toronto’s neighbourhoods and connect over lunch

We invite you to learn more about the Academy by exploring our website.

Want to know more?

Have a question? Check out our Academy FAQs.

The Academy “year” is full of workshops and events. Our dynamic schedule gives you all the information on event, venue, time, etc. that you need to ensure that you can take advantage of every opportunity that interests you.

Our Mission


The Academy for Lifelong Learning Toronto is a not-for-profit organization operated by volunteers for people interested in peer-led study and dialogue. Our mission is to promote learning and collegiality through the exchange of ideas and stimulating discussion.

Core Values and Beliefs

Members of the Academy:

  • Value intellectual challenge, diversity of opinion and new ideas
  • Value education and continued learning in a variety of subject areas
  • Believe learning takes place through a variety of activities and formats, including research, presentations and the exchange of information and ideas through stimulating discussion
  • Value sharing experiences and ideas with peers in social and informal learning activities
  • Believe that a volunteer organization depends on individuals who share a sense of responsibility to contribute to the organization


    1. To provide a program of daytime peer-led workshops based on self-directed learning
    2. To promote a collegial atmosphere by providing opportunities for social activity
    3. To remain a not-for-profit, volunteer organization
    4. To ensure the long-term viability of the Academy

Our History

The Academy for Lifelong Learning Toronto has a rich 25+-year history. Learn how we got started and how we have progressed.

The Academy has had a long and proud history of providing  assistance to the University of Toronto's mature students through bursaries awarded in the Academy's name. These bursaries have helped recipients cover tuition fees as well as living costs. Currently, the Academy is contributing to a bursary at the U of T's School of Continuing Studies. It will become endowed once we have contributed $35,000; a milestone we will reach when we make our 2018 contribution. We are proud to help students in need and to continue to have a strong affiliation with the School.


Making the Academy Accessible for Everyone

The Academy strives to provide all its members with equitable access to workshops, Forums, Talks and activities regardless of any challenges they may have with hearing, vision or mobility.

Please contact a member of the Accessibility Committee if you have questions or concerns.

Paula Barber -
Linda Woodcock -

Useful Links

There are a number of organizations that offer information and resources that may be of interest to Academy members. While not meant to be an exhaustive list by any means, these links capture some of the sources available.

University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies

Third Age Network (TAN) - Lifelong Learning Groups in Ontario

News and Events at U of T

Toronto Reference Library - Key Resources

Ontario Ministry for Seniors and Accessibility