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Realizing Standards of Practice in VET

Gregson, Margaret and Todd, Brian (2019) Realizing Standards of Practice in VET. In: Handbook of Vocational Education and Training for the Changing World of Work. Springer, Switzerland, pp. 1471-1493. ISBN 9783319945316

Item Type: Book Section


Sainsbury (2016) draws attention to the importance of ensuring that proposed new standards for vocational and technical education in England are not reduced to the simplistic functional analysis of narrow job roles (an approach prevalent in England from the 1980s to the present), or limited to include only the short-term, instrumental needs of individual employers. This lesson is either hard to hear or difficult to learn. Over twenty years before, Wolf (1995) and more recently, Wolf (2011) warned of dangers in the use of functional analysis in the development of vocational standards on the grounds that such approaches tend to lead to the production of ‘bewildering lists of atomised ‘skills’ and a rather ‘tick-box’ approach to vocational assessment’. Behind this stands the deeper point, that the search to find an absolutely perfect list of vocational standards of knowledge, skills and attitudes is costly, time-consuming and ultimately self-defeating because, at the end of the day, all that you have is a longer/different list. Sennett, (2008) reminds us that what we mean by good quality work and what we consider to be effective approaches to assessment are central to good educational practice in a wide variety of vocational contexts. Literature from the field of educational research supports the claim that when teaching, learning and assessment are seen as integrated forms of good educational practice, high levels of achievement can be realised. However, meaningful and workable standards of quality and research-informed assessment practice are not yet well understood or widely evident in the English system of vocational education and training (and possibly elsewhere).
Key Words: Apprenticeships; Formative and Summative Assessment; Functional Analysis; Quality; Vocational Education.

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Uncontrolled Keywords: Apprenticeships; Formative and Summative Assessment; Functional Analysis; Quality; Vocational Education.
Depositing User: Maggie Gregson


Item ID: 10885
ISBN: 9783319945316
Official URL:

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ORCID for Margaret Gregson: ORCID iD

Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 19 Jun 2019 13:39
Last Modified: 18 Feb 2021 17:00


Author: Margaret Gregson ORCID iD
Author: Brian Todd

University Divisions

Faculty of Education and Society
Faculty of Education and Society > School of Education


Education > Educational Research
Education > Further Education
Education > Higher Education

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