ERIC Number: ED227308
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Jan
Reference Count: 0
The Roles and Functions of Vocational Education: Some Current Perspectives.
Pratzner, Frank C.; Russell, Jill Frymier
This report examines information from a broad base of literature and research and from three Delphi surveys of the views and opinions of small, highly select groups of knowledgeable educational leaders in order to highlight a number of key issues and arguments related to the appropriate roles and functions of public vocational education. It concludes that record levels of unemployment, declining economic development and productivity growth, and sharp declines in the number of new labor market participants in the decades ahead, coupled with an aging labor force, are all forcing greater emphasis on vocational education's role in meeting the nation's economic development needs. The dominant effect of these conditions has been to move vocational education toward greater emphasis on the development of highly specialized skills for specific occupations. At the same time, another group of knowledgeable people believe that secondary vocational education's emphasis should be on general education and preparation in broad occupational areas rather than in specific jobs, while postsecondary vocational education's focus should be on preparation for specific jobs, especially highly skilled jobs for emerging industries, for a wider spectrum of the population. These opposing viewpoints raise some policy implications for federal and state governments and lead to questions, which, the report indicates, should be researched in the coming decade. (KC)
Descriptors: Economic Development, Educational Needs, Educational Philosophy, Educational Planning, Educational Policy, Educational Trends, Employment Projections, Futures (of Society), Labor Needs, Long Range Planning, Policy Formation, Postsecondary Education, Secondary Education, Vocational Education
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Vocational and Adult Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Ohio State Univ., Columbus. National Center for Research in Vocational Education.