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ERIC Number: EJ1071776
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jul
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 45
ISSN: ISSN-1874-785X
Crossing Boundaries between School and Work during Apprenticeships
Akkerman, Sanne F.; Bakker, Arthur
Vocations and Learning, v5 n2 p153-173 Jul 2012
In vocational education, there is an ongoing discussion about problems occurring in school-work transitions and in relating school and work-based learning processes. Apprenticeships have been identified as valuable learning and working trajectories for making successful transitions and relations between school and work. However, they have been mostly located as activities taking place solely in the workplace with hardly any attention for what students do and learn during release days at school. Deploying the theoretical notion of boundary crossing, we conducted a study in Dutch senior secondary vocational laboratory education, investigating the actions and interactions taking place between school and work during apprenticeships, taking into account both the cognitive and identity-related challenge of students' boundary crossing. Specifically, we conducted workplace visits and analyzed how apprentices' experiences at work are discussed and reflected upon with students and teachers at school. The findings reveal that what students are expected to learn in work practices is largely rendered invisible by the technology-mediated, scripted and socially distributed nature of their work. They are educated as lab technicians doing much manual work, but become more operators of machines in the workplace. The release days seem to provide initial ways to explicate and reflect with the teacher on what is going on in work, but they can be exploited more fully for vocational learning. Based on the results we discuss how school and work institutions can mutually feed each other in facilitating apprentices' learning.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Netherlands