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The didactics of vocational Bildung: how stories matter in VET research
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Education.
2016 (English)In: Journal of Vocational Education and Training, ISSN 1363-6820, E-ISSN 1747-5090, Vol. 68, no 3, 359-377 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In the research on education, the field roughly covered by the concept of Bildung has seen a wide-ranging discussion philosophically but less has been said and done from an empirical and vocational perspective. Bildung includes matters such as: formation of character, ethical and aesthetic knowledge/capability, capacity for wise deliberation and reflection as well as the development of personal autonomy. The focus here is on how narratives about teaching and curricula, both enacted and experienced, can be used to articulate significant aspects of Bildung-related practical knowledge. The empirical basis for this draws on a variety of narrative sources. By presenting, comparing and discussing narratives, it will be argued that there is a number of Bildung-related educational matters, not least in vocational education and training, where a narrative articulation can contribute. These can be differentiated in at least five groups: enriching knowledge of vocational tasks; conceptual development and critical reflection; advancement of practice; development of ‘practice fields’ and the articulation of patterns of vocational Bildung affordances. In distinguishing these different ways in which vocational Bildung as a form of practical knowledge can be enriched through narrative studies, the article contributes to our capacity for doing systematic research in the subject area.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 68, no 3, 359-377 p.
Keyword [en]
Teacher training, philosophy of VET, curriculum innovation, pedagogy, vocational education and training
National Category
Didactics
Research subject
Education
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-133158DOI: 10.1080/13636820.2016.1213762ISI: 000382693100005OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-133158DiVA: diva2:957484
Available from: 2016-09-02 Created: 2016-09-02 Last updated: 2017-01-31Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. The Rough Ground: Narrative explorations of vocational Bildung and wisdom in practice
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Rough Ground: Narrative explorations of vocational Bildung and wisdom in practice
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This compilation thesis, consisting of five articles, focuses on narrative explorations of vocational Bildung and wisdom in practice. It is an explicitly practical and empirical approach to what, for the most part, tends to be limited to philosophical discussions. This is motivated by the relative lack of systematic knowledge about how to enact wisdom in practice and afford vocational Bildung to those engaged in vocational education and training (VET). The absence of such knowledge makes it more difficult to develop VET practice and curricula and also leads to significant parts of the internal goods of practice to remain tacit, personal and local when they need to become articulated and shared. The aim of the five articles has been to explore how Bildung and practical wisdom can enrich our understanding of vocational practice and didactics on a theoretical, methodological and practical level. Conceptually the thesis draws extensively from narrative inquiry (Clandinin & Connelly 1995, 2000), reflective practice (Schön 1983, 1987), Aristotelian philosophy regarding practical wisdom (Aristotle 2009, Nussbaum 1990), MacIntyre’s concept of a practice (2011) and the Bildung-tradition (Rittelmeyer 2012) to create a coherent framework for the inquiry termed vocational Bildung didactics (VBD). It is located in the phronetic social science paradigm articulated by Flyvbjerg (2001) where the main aim for research is to enrich practice rather than generate theory. The methodology for this kind of inquiry is the collection of narrative cases focusing on unusually rich/successful/wise cases of a practice, what Flyvbjerg (2001) terms extreme and paradigmatic cases. On a conceptual level the inquiry has resulted in the framework of VBD that provides the structure for engaging in this kind of research. It has also resulted in some further conceptualizations driven by the interpretation of cases, in particular a differentiation between vocational and cultural practices. On a methodological level it has resulted in a kind of double didactical method: the case narratives function as articulations of practical knowledge regarding vocational Bildung and practical wisdom but also as the didactical tools for teaching this. On a practical level the inquiry has resulted in suggestions for curriculum-development as well as ways in which the case narratives can be used to enrich the understanding of practitioners.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Education, Stockholm University, 2017. 149 p.
Series
Doktorsavhandlingar från Institutionen för pedagogik och didaktik, 47
Keyword
Vocational education, Bildung, Practical wisdom, Narrative, Practice, Didactics
National Category
Pedagogy
Research subject
Education
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-137676 (URN)978-91-7649-640-4 (ISBN)978-91-7649-641-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2017-03-06, Lilla hörsalen, Naturhistoriska riksmuseet, Frescativägen 40, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following paper was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 5: Manuscript.

Available from: 2017-02-09 Created: 2017-01-09 Last updated: 2017-02-10Bibliographically approved

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