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ERIC Number: ED561289
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Feb
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Let's Get Real: Deeper Learning and the Power of the Workplace. Deeper Learning Research Series. Executive Summary
Hoffman, Nancy
Jobs For the Future
In the United States, we tend to assume that young people should become educated and then go to work, as though the two were entirely separate stages of life. This dichotomy blinds us to the fact that work itself can be a powerful means of education. Indeed, the workplace is where many young people become most engaged in learning high-level skills and content, insofar as work gives them opportunities to apply academic subject matter to real-world problems. The workplace is an excellent place for young people to develop the range of academic, interpersonal, and intrapersonal capacities that are referred to, collectively, as "deeper learning." This paper argues that the current discussion about deeper learning in the nation's high schools ought to be reframed, in order to acknowledge that career readiness isn't just an outcome of the K-12 curriculum but a process--often overlapping with academic studies--through which young people learn deeply and prepare for working life. In order to mature, young people need to participate in activities that take them out of their comfort zones, challenge them, place them among adult workers in authentic settings, and ask them to perform. To scale up existing opportunities for work-based deeper learning, federal and state policies should incentivize: (1) Employers to take young people into workplaces for meaningful learning experiences; (2) Educators to implement work-based experiences as a means of learning deeply; and (3) Intermediary organizations to translate between educators and employers and provide the infrastructure that makes collaboration possible. These approaches will require careful attention to principles of educational quality, with an emphasis on deeper learning. [This report was produced as a collaborative effort with Students at the Center, a Jobs for the Future initiative. For the full report, see ED561286; for the policy bulletin, see ED561285]
Jobs for the Future. 88 Broad Street 8th Floor, Boston, MA 02110. Tel: 617-728-4446; Fax: 617-728-4857; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education; Postsecondary Education; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
Authoring Institution: Jobs for the Future
Identifiers - Location: Switzerland; United States