Utbildning på gränsen mellan skola och arbete : Pedagogisk förändring i svensk yrkesutbildning 1918-1971

Sammanfattning: The aim of this thesis is to contribute knowledge about pedagogical change in Swedish vocational education and training (VET). The study focuses on vocational schools between 1918 and 1971, and discusses the educational practices that balanced on the border between school and work. The practices under study are probation periods, production work, and “diligence allowance”. By focusing on these practices, which ceased when the vocational training was integrated with upper secondary school in 1971, this study seeks to illustrate how shifts in work and school traditions in the VET discourse are relevant to pedagogical change in vocational training. The central questions of the thesis seek to pinpoint the ways in which the traditions manifested themselves and how the pedagogical content of the educational practices were renegotiated. The study is based on extensive empirical data consisting of public enquiry reports, an organisational journal, archive material, and memory books from vocational schools from the relevant period.The VET discourse has been analysed using Johan Asplund’s concept of “figures of thought”. The central figures of thought in vocational training – school and work – have been used to see how the practices’ pedagogical content and aims were renegotiated. This renegotiation made it possible to adapt to school structures in a way that made these practices problematic. Consequently, they could be removed when vocational training was integrated with upper secondary school. In the period leading up to the 1950s, the pedagogical foundations were largely inspired by work practices. Thereafter, it became increasingly common for tensions between the logics and structures embedded in work and school to arise in the VET discourse. This process led to a shift in emphasis in the discourse, from the “work” figure of thought to the “school” figure of thought.

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