ERIC Number: ED235566
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-May
Reference Count: 0
Occupational Demand and the Rise of Postsecondary Vocational Education.
Grubb, W. Norton
This analysis assesses alternative explanations of the robust enrollment growth in community colleges in the 1970's, part of a larger trend of increased vocationalization of education. The conventional explanation is that community colleges offer the most appropriate training for rapidly increasing jobs requiring middle-level skills. Various other models attempting to account for the enrollment growth in two-year institutions are considered; common to several models are: the presumption of expanded job opportunities in middle-level occupations; a concern with the supply of students, who may respond primarily to economic factors such as earnings or training costs, or to other factors including the entrepreneurial efforts of administrators or the ideological appeal of vocationalism; and a lack of information on the actual benefits of vocationally oriented community colleges. The growth rates of enrollments and degrees awarded in community college vocational programs are compared with the growth rates of specific occupations, revealing that increases in middle-level jobs are insufficient to explain enrollment increases; a pluralistic approach employing a combination of explanations is thus recommended. Focal points for further examination of the problem are discussed. (Author/MJL)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Stanford Univ., CA. Inst. for Research on Educational Finance and Governance.