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ERIC Number: EJ828172
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Jun
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 34
ISSN: ISSN-0159-6306
Language, Literacy, and Performance: Working Identities in the Back of the House
Hunter, Judy
Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, v28 n2 p243-257 Jun 2007
In the 21st century concerns about workplace language and literacy skills, particularly in the service and manufacturing sectors, continue to drive education and testing policy in many OECD countries. Employers tend to adopt deficit assumptions about service workers' skills, conflating social identities and language and literacy, which can blind employers to the constructive procedures that employees create to meet the demands of work. Research in a Canadian urban hotel reveals unofficial but competent and innovative steps that service workers devise through their insightful knowledge of the local context. Meanwhile, international measures of literacy continue to use questionable "recontextualized" texts that focus on assessing text-based performance, which, in turn, is used to shape tightly defined skill-based approaches to teaching. However, the hotel research among service workers with "low skills" shows deep engagement with tasks, opportunities to work autonomously, and challenging situations appear to be related to employee competence and innovation. (Contains 3 figures and 2 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada