liu.seSearch for publications in DiVA
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • oxford
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Students' strategies for learning identities as industrial workers in a Swedish upper secondary school VET programme
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education and Sociology. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8907-8709
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education and Sociology. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2486-2663
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education and Sociology. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education and Sociology. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
2018 (English)In: Journal of Vocational Education and Training, ISSN 1363-6820, E-ISSN 1747-5090, Vol. 70, no 1, p. 66-84Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of this article is to investigate the learning strategies vocational students use to become part of a work community, and how these strategies are related to the formation of a vocational identity at the workplace. Conducting qualitative interviews, data were collected from 44 industrial programme students from six upper secondary schools. The findings revealed five recurrent strategies used by the students for learning vocational identities as industrial workers. The students took individual responsibility for their own learning, asked questions to gain deeper vocational knowledge, searched for role models in the work community, positioned themselves as a resource to the work community, understood and used humour and jokes in order to become a member of the community. The conclusion is that the students actively develop learning strategies to adapt their behaviour to the norms and ideals of the industrial work community. In the process of develop the vocational identities as industrial workers, the students’ vocational habitus is transformed to better fit the industrial work community. The integration of the notions of agency and habitus demonstrates the dynamic nature of students’ participation in work communities; simultaneously, the students reproduce social structures that promote vocational identities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2018. Vol. 70, no 1, p. 66-84
Keywords [en]
Vocational learning, apprenticeship, vocational identity, VET, students' strategies, vocational habitus
National Category
Sociology Pedagogy Learning
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-142820DOI: 10.1080/13636820.2017.1394357ISI: 000425778900004OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-142820DiVA, id: diva2:1155023
Available from: 2017-11-06 Created: 2017-11-06 Last updated: 2024-01-31Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Vocational Students’ Agency in Identity Formation as Industrial Workers
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Vocational Students’ Agency in Identity Formation as Industrial Workers
2021 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[sv]
Yrkeselevers agens i identitetsformering som industriarbetare
Abstract [en]

The overall aim of this thesis is to contribute knowledge about vocational identity formation among students within the industrial programme in Swedish upper secondary education, with a particular focus on their workplace-based learning. To break down the aim, three research questions have been formulated and each is addressed in one or two specific articles. These questions are: (1) What learning strategies do vocational students use to become part of a work community, and how do these strategies relate to the formation of a vocational identity at the workplace? (2) How do vocational students experience their identity formation in relation to a vocation within the industrial sector? (3) How do vocational students handle the division between theoretical and practical knowledge as they learn to become skilled industrial workers? 

The thesis builds on 53 semi-structured qualitative interviews with Swedish upper secondary vocational students enrolled on the industrial programme. The interviews revolve around the students’ vocational identity formation, with a focus on their workplace-based learning. The students are between 18 and 20 years old and the majority are boys. The findings are analysed through the theoretical lens of situated learning, where identity formation is viewed as a social learning process that takes place through participation in communities of practice. In addition, the concepts of habitus, gender and social categorisation are used as analytical tools to provide a deeper understanding of issues concerning status, power and exclusion in relation to vocational identity formation. 

The findings reveal that the students’ vocational identity formation is closely connected to the social aspects of participating in workplace communities. Knowledge about the jargon and social norms of the workplace seem to be of more importance for vocational identity formation than knowledge about the concrete working tasks. The study follows the students’ vocational identity formation throughout their vocational learning trajectories, which reveal that vocational identities are formed in heterogenic ways. 

The students may adopt a committed, flexible or ambivalent approach towards industrial work. Aspects concerning agency and status seem to be crucial for the vocational identification process. The forming of a vocational identity also implies positioning oneself in the hierarchy and division between theoretical and practical knowledge, as well as between masculinity and femininity. The students appear as knowledgeable actors who are aware of the generally low status of industrial work, while simultaneously expressing a great deal of pride in relation to their intended vocations. 

In the discussion, a model of the students’ vocational identity formation is proposed to capture the interplay between collective and structural dimensions (e.g. social background, class and status hierarchies at school) and students’ agency and strategies in becoming industrial workers. 

From the findings of this thesis, three main conclusions are drawn: (1) The students form vocational identities through using vocational agency in actively developing strategies for becoming accepted in the workplace community; (2) Workplace-based learning is central for the students’ vocational identity formation, in spite of the relatively short time that the students spend there, compared to the time spent at school; (3) The students’ vocational image awareness, expressed through awareness of, and reactions to, other people’s images of their vocation, constitutes an important part of their vocational identity formation. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2021. p. 127
Series
Linköping Studies in Arts and Sciences, ISSN 0282-9800 ; 807
Series
Linköping Studies in Behavioural Science, ISSN 1654-2029 ; 228
Keywords
Vocational education, Vocational identity, Industrial programme, Workplace- based learning, Yrkesidentitet, Yrkesutbildning, Industriprogrammet, Arbetsplatsförlagt lärande
National Category
Pedagogy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-175179 (URN)10.3384/diss.diva-175179 (DOI)9789179296537 (ISBN)
Public defence
2021-05-21, TEMCAS, T-Building, Campus Valla, Linköping, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2021-04-23 Created: 2021-04-23 Last updated: 2022-04-04Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(192 kB)452 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 192 kBChecksum SHA-512
da7e65831a753e03d3462439ad622d00fecbaf2af67ed81bdcd82ec26501e2604d5eff31366c07b7d7b8afe664583a41ed4a95c690e7fe573e11f7230a2712a5
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Other links

Publisher's full text

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Ferm, LisaGustavsson, MariaPersson Thunqvist, DanielSvensson, Louise
By organisation
Education and SociologyFaculty of Arts and Sciences
In the same journal
Journal of Vocational Education and Training
SociologyPedagogyLearning

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 452 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

doi
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

doi
urn-nbn
Total: 603 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • oxford
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf