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ERIC Number: EJ817200
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 18
ISSN: ISSN-1366-5626
Hard/Soft, Formal/Informal, Work/Learning: Tenuous/Persistent Binaries in the Knowledge-Based Society
Jubas, Kaela; Butterwick, Shauna
Journal of Workplace Learning, v20 n7-8 p514-525 2008
Purpose: This paper discusses insights from a study of women working, or seeking or preparing for work, in the information technology (IT) field. At issue is how and whether alternative career pathways and informally acquired skills and knowledge, as well as the operation of gender in learning and work, are acknowledged by employers, colleagues and participants themselves. Design/methodology/approach: Using the qualitative technique of life and work history, this study mapped varied learning pathways of women working in the IT field. We used a feminist approach to explore this field, which is characterised as both highly masculine and filled with opportunities for all workers, including women. Findings: Juxtaposing categories present in the data, such as female and male, formal and informal education, work and learning, hard and soft skills, and centre and periphery, we establish that binary constructs are both persistent and tenuous. Research limitations/implications: Our analysis challenges assumptions about educating the global workforce and the learning pathways within the IT field. Moreover, it suggests the usefulness of further qualitative research on this topic in other geographic locations or fields of work. Originality/value: In questioning epistemological and social binaries, our analysis contributes to the re-theorisation of conceptions of knowledge and learning. In moving from an either/or to a both/and understanding of them, we offer a different way of talking about how they can be understood. (Contains 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada