Reconnecting young people with learning: A social capital approach in VET

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Publication Type:
Journal Article
International Journal of Training Research, 2010, 8 (2), pp. 103 - 115
Issue Date:
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This paper contributes to pedagogical debates on how to meet the learning needs o/young people who are disconnected from school It presents a case study 0/ a program which aimed to prepare students for their Year 10 equivalent school leaving qualification in a basic education section 0/ a Technical and Further Education (TAFE) college in Australia. Most 0/ the students were between 15 and 17 years 0/ age, had experienced literacy and numeracy difficulties in forma/learning, and for various reasons were disconnected from the school system. The paper explains how an approach to learning in VET led to important human and social capital outcomes, and in particular, a changed sense o/4ficacy on the part o/students in the program. The two key elements 0/ this VET pedagogy were: individualised, self-paced learning within a flexible program structure; and the fostering o/social capital including mutual trust and respect, through the course-related learning network 0/ teachers and students and other influential networks, including peer networks. Analysis 0/ interview transcript data with students and teachers revealed the mutuaUy reinforcing role 0/ these elements of VET pedagogy.
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