What is Encore Learning? 

Encore Learning is a nonprofit educational organization founded in 2002 that offers a wide variety of daytime college-level noncredit courses, clubs, special events and activities to help meet the continuing educational and social interests of anyone over age 50. Encore Learning is governed, supported and financed by its members. Our volunteer instructors—retired or working professionals and scholars—create a stimulating learning environment through an exciting array of academic subjects. There are no tests or prerequisites but often some suggested reading. Members explore new ideas and develop new friendships. Encore Learning receives valuable assistance through alliances with George Mason University, the Arlington Public Schools Adult Education Program, Arlington County’s Office of Senior Adult Programs and Virginia Tech Northern Virginia Center. 

Contact Encore Learning

Communicating with Encore Learning is easy:


Leave a voice message: 703-228-2144

Volunteer at Encore Learning 

Volunteer work at Encore Learning is performed in two ways: through standing committees headed by board members and through individual activities, e.g., instructors and class aides. Committees recruit new instructors and develop courses each semester; seek exhibits, speakers and performances for our special event offerings; write, edit and distribute our catalog; recruit new members; coordinate our clubs; organize Encore Learning’s social functions; and recruit, train and support our class aides. The member-elected Board of Directors governs the organization while the part-time staff serves as its administrative arm. Volunteer-run committees and other volunteer activities are our lifeblood, but for the most part do not require extensive time commitments. Consider offering your talents today. 

Support Encore Learning 

Encore Learning is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Any donation is a charitable contribution deductible from income taxes to the full extent permitted by law. Members, friends and organizations wishing to support Encore Learning may direct their contributions to our General Fund, which helps Encore Learning maintain a solid financial underpinning and funds ongoing operations, or to a scholarship fund. As a partner in Arlington’s education community, Encore Learning sponsors multiple scholarships. Our Gosling Youth Scholarship supports graduates of Arlington public schools attending George Mason or Marymount Universities. The John T. Sprott Scholarship aids graduate students at Mason’s Schar School of Policy and Government. The endowed Encore Learning - McCracken Memorial Scholarship awards scholarships to Mason undergraduates. Encore Learning also contributes annually to an Arlington Public Schools Adult Education scholarship assisting Arlington residents seeking to improve their job skills. 

Spring 2024 Activities 


Classes are scheduled weekdays between 10:00 AM and 3:30 PM. Classes meet once a week for 1.5 to 2 hours and each course lasts from four to 10 weeks. Class sizes generally range from 15 to 150. 


Encore Learning’s clubs are open to all current members. There are nine clubs: Breakfast, Bridge, Cinema, Chamber Music Club, Current Issues Discussion, Kayak, Mindfulness, Nonfiction Book, Tech Hobbyist and Travel. See our clubs page for information about club activities and how to be notified of upcoming meetings.


Special Events include the Encore Learning Presents Series that are free and open to the public. These one-time lectures, panel presentations or films are presented online. Virtual and in-person member tours are also planned. View more information on our Special Events here


Encore Learning’s spring and fall course previews offer an opportunity to hear the instructors describe their courses before course registration begins. Prospective members are also invited.  


Encore Learning holds an annual membership meeting to elect board members from a slate of candidates recruited by a nominating committee and to discuss the state of the organization. All current members will be notified of candidates for election to the board of directors, which includes officers whose terms are up for election and each committee chair, and receive a ballot to complete online. Membership Meetings are generally held in May. Members will be notified via email.


Membership in Encore Learning costs $65 per year and begins on the day on which the nonrefundable membership fee is paid. Membership renewal adds 12 months to the membership expiration date, which can always be found by logging in to your account online. All memberships are individual and non-transferable. Encore Learning is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization; membership fee is a charitable contribution deductible from income taxes to the full extent permitted by law. Only current Encore Learning members may register for our courses and attend our club activities. All memberships will be processed online via our website.


Only current Encore Learning members may register for a course. Course registration is not transferable between members. The fee for each course is $55. There is no minimum or maximum number of courses for which you may register. For the Spring 2024 semester, all registrations will be processed online via our website. Please note that only credit cards are accepted for course registrations. Course registration for the Spring 2023 semester begins at 10:00 AM Monday, February 5, 2024. 

All registrations are first come, first served; waitlists for filled courses are available online. To register go to The registration for a course is not meant to be shared at your home. If any other individual is going to participate in the course with you, they must also register for the course. If a course sells out, participants may be limited to signing on with a single device. 


Members get immediate feedback on their registration status upon payment and receive an emailed receipt, including any waitlist status. Members may access their account online at any time to view/print membership and registration status and receipts. 


Members successfully registered in a course may choose between full refund of the course registration fee or transfer to an alternate open course in the following cases: 

  • The selected course is canceled for any reason; 
  • The course’s published schedule, format (virtual vs in-person) or location is changed prior to the course start date, and the member is no longer able to attend because of the change; or
  • Encore Learning receives an email (to with a withdrawal or transfer request from the member within 24 hours of the first class session start time. 

Withdrawal requests received more than 24 hours after the first class session start time but within five working days after the first class session of the course may specify either refund of the course fee minus a $10 service charge or transfer to an alternate open course; no refund or transfer is available after that period. 

Courses that do not meet the minimum enrollment of 10 students at least one week prior to the course start date will be cancelled. If withdrawals occurring after the course start date result in enrollment below the indicated minimum, the course may be cancelled.  

Email address changes must be sent to via the member’s new preferred email address; include full name and contact information. Staff will confirm and update accordingly. 


Encore Learning will hold both virtual (via Zoom) and in-person courses at George Mason and other locations for Spring 2024.

For virtual courses, you will need a computer, tablet or phone. Courses will vary in format depending on class size and content, with some having ongoing discussion and others reserving questions for the end of class. 

Instructions for connecting to the Zoom class will be provided in Class Media in Member Account Manager, under My Activities. Visit our Zoom Resources page for more about using Zoom.  


Log into Member Account Manager at least one week before course registration. This is the best way to verify that your username (email address) and password are working. If your email has changed recently and you are unable to log in, email staff immediately using your working email address and include your full name and contact information. Staff will update your email address during office hours and send confirmation by email. Begin the password process again with the confirmed email address. 


If the system displays “Username does not exist. Please enter a new one” or “User does not exist, login failed,” it may have been a keying error. Retype and submit again. We find this is the most likely culprit. You may have changed your email address since last logging into the system. Notify staff as noted above. Limited staff support will be available via email on the first day of registration. 


Review/update your information in your Member Account Manager before registration begins on February 5. Be sure your membership is current, check your membership expiration date displayed under your contact information. If no expiration date is displayed, your membership is not current. 

Tips for successful registration:

  • Note your Encore Learning password for easy access to your account on registration day. 
  • Choose your desired courses before logging in to register on February 5. 
  • Register online at 10:00 AM Monday, February 5, for your best chance at a seat in a popular course. 
  • Opt to be placed on the waitlist if the course is filled. 
  • Complete your online registration and payment within 20 minutes. 
  • Login to Member Account Manager, click on My Activities, view Class Media, then view the Zoom Login Instructions for information about connecting to the course. 
  • Sit back and wait for classes to begin. 


From time to time, members are offered opportunities related to courses, clubs and special events. Encore Learning disclaims all liability from injury or loss arising from a member’s participation in such activities. 


Encore Learning does not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, color, religion, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin. As an educational organization, Encore Learning subscribes to the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) principle of academic freedom: All views should be respected, regardless of their conformance with generally or currently accepted views. 


Encore Learning is committed to protecting member privacy and to ensuring the security of personal information collected. Encore Learning does not sell or lend member information. A complete Encore Learning Privacy Policy Statement is available from the Encore Learning Administrator and on our website. Members are urged to maintain their phone and postal address via their account on our website. Changes to your email address affect account access.