Hanging in or shaping a future: defining a role for vocationally related learning in a 'knowledge' society
Bathmaker, A.-M. (2005) Hanging in or shaping a future: defining a role for vocationally related learning in a 'knowledge' society. Journal of Education Policy, 20 (1). pp. 81-100. ISSN 1464-5106 Available from: http://eprints.uwe.ac.uk/6664
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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0268093042000322847
Drawing upon a case study of teachers and students in a further education college who were participating in or teaching on general vocational courses in the 1990s, this paper looks at the roles and purposes of vocational education for young people. The data are used to consider how lecturers tended to ascribe particular identities to vocational students, which led them to construct their courses to meet what they perceived as students' needs. Whilst this meant that lecturers helped and encouraged students to continue with education and progress further up the educational ladder, the paper questions how far such actions can overcome the limitations inherent in vocational courses in an unequal educational system. The issues raised in this paper aim to contribute to debates across a number of countries, about the role of broad vocational education within education systems as a whole.