ERIC Number: ED280963
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-May
A High Tech Future.
The new vocationalism in education could be said to be an effect of changes in the greater society--arriving after the changes have already happened. There has been a shift in the nature of the advanced capitalist countries, such as the United States. Giant companies have, through advances in communications technology, become able to control worldwide businesses through a single headquarters in a major city. Along with these developments, the western democracies have poured huge sums into military weaponry, which requires increasingly sophisticated technology. Relying on new technology, industries have abandoned the old factories of center cities and relocated in new facilities in the suburbs, leaving decaying city cores. This has been aggravated by a tendency for the headquarters of multinational firms to locate in big cities such as London and New York, close to expert financial centers and universities; cash flows to them, draining subsidiary companies in other locations. High-tech production needs a small (20 percent), highly qualified technical work force for research, development, management, and maintenance, and a much larger (80 percent), semiskilled or unskilled work force for production. The gulf in pay for these two classes of workers is widening. The 20 percent who are highly skilled and qualified are increasingly likely to be drawn from those who have had higher education, while other ways of training and getting relevant experience increasingly are being closed off. At the same time, education has been moving toward more job-oriented content, training students for jobs that will change rapidly. What is needed is an educational system that can give workers basic skills, flexibility, and ability to learn ever-changing job content. (KC)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: London Univ. (England). Inst. of Education.
Note: Paper presented at the Vocationalising Education Conference (London, England, May 7-9, 1986).