What is Hamilton Third Age Learning?

Hamilton Third Age Learning

  • What is a hash tag?
  • Is there a difference in male and female brains?
  • Need to keep up with technology?
  • What happened in the financial crisis of 2008?
  • Why does Canada have home grown terrorists?
  • What is the future of healthcare?
  • What is the latest research on stem cells?


These are a few of the discussions in the new HTAL (Hamilton Third Age Learning) program.


The Third Age Learning Movement was established in France in 1973. It spread rapidly throughout Europe and in the UK and first arrived in Canada in Sherbrook, PQ in 1975.

 Worldwide there are now many organizations offering learning opportunities for older, often retired people (third age). Venues include universities, community organizations and independent groups.

 According to Catalyst, The Canadian Network for ThirdAge Learning, there are now over 50 third age learning groups of various kinds in Canada, coast to coast.

 Well-established, successful programs have been established in Guelph and Kitchener for over 25 years and most recently Burlington launched their program two years ago.

New to Hamilton:

The good news is that Third Age Learning has begun in Hamilton.

With the second largest number of older adults in the Province and a city committed to becoming an Age Friendly City the time is right for this exciting movement to take hold in Hamilton. 


Hamilton Third Age Program (HTAL) was launched in 2013 with a lecture series for retired and semi- retired persons who share an interest in lifelong learning and understanding contemporary issues.

Our theme: “How do we begin to understand the 21st century?” Our world is a very complex and confusing place where change is happening at an ever-faster pace. The highly qualified speakers cover a range of topics providing insights into this century’s problems and possibilities.

The program is intellectually stimulating and engaging. As well, it provides an opportunity for participants to socialize.


The lecture series is offered at the McMaster Innovation Park on 175 Longwood Avenue. This is a spacious and bright location which highlights works of local artists.


The 6 lecture series is offered in the spring and fall on Friday mornings, 10am to noon.


45 minute lecture, coffee break followed by a lively question and answer period.


Upcoming: fall 2014:

  • Jackie Maxwell Artistic director of the Shaw festival: the important role of theater in contemporary life.
  • Dr. Gordon McBean director of the Western University center for environment and sustainability: Global climate change and how Canadians can address the issue.
  • Dr. Laurel Trainer Professor of Psychology at Mcmaster: children learn through exposure to music and how it shapes behavior.
  • Dr. Ron Dielbert of the University of Toronto: the implications of the Snowden revelations.
  • David Mulroney former Canadian ambassador to china: Chinas’ changing character and the challenges it poses for Canada.
  • Francesca Grosso of Grosso McCarthy Toronto: tips and advice on navigating Ontario’s changing health care system.



The price of the 6-lecture package is $50.00 (includes free parking) or if you prefer to come to a lecture of your choice, there are tickets (depending on available seating) at the door for $10.00


How to register:

Registration has currently sold out for the fall 2014 series. Registration and information for 2015 spring lectures:

go to www.htal.ca


Sharron Johnson is a member of the Board of Directors for Hamilton Third Age Learning.