Although there is a vast literature on ‘education’ and the ‘sociology of education’ it appears that researchers are far from clear as to what counts as ‘education’ and the ‘educational process’. A brief glance at a range of basic texts devoted to social science and educational studies indicates that the term ‘education’ is often ill-defined and used to apply to a narrow range of social circumstances. Despite the fact that ‘education’ is a life-long experience that can be acquired through the family, the peer group, the church, the trade union, the workplace and so on, it is often the case that education is equated with schools, colleges, classrooms, curricula and examinations. In these circumstances, we need to consider how researchers have defined ‘education’ and for what purpose. This chapter therefore focuses on the way in which ‘education’ has been defined within major areas of the sociology of education. As ‘education’ is in part defined by social legislation there are numerous differences between the structure of the educational systems of different societies and in turn this influences the ways in which researchers define ‘education’. Accordingly, much of the discussion provided in this chapter together with examples of empirical evidence will be drawn from the United Kingdom and in particular from the English educational system.