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Resistances to scientific knowledge production of comparative measurements of dropout and completion in European higher education
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Education. Uppsala University, Sweden .ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4494-8015
2016 (English)In: European Educational Research Journal (online), ISSN 1474-9041, E-ISSN 1474-9041Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

The article is a critical sociological analysis of current transnational practices on creating comparable measurements of dropout and completion in higher education and the consequences for the conditions of scientific knowledge production on the topic. The analysis revolves around questions of epistemological, methodological and symbolic types and, in particular, how the social processes in the creation and use of different measures offer researchers different positions in the knowledge production. Descriptions of statistics and measurements from statistics agencies in Sweden and the UK and from the OECD, EUROSTAT and Eurydice, as well as policy texts and data collection manuals from European Union bodies, have been compared and analysed. Particular interest is directed towards examples of measures used in Sweden and the UK. The results suggest that available data on student completion offers only a very limited basis for researchdriven comparative analysis. It offers also a problematisation of the notions of researchers seen as users or producers of data and different position takings in statistical reasoning in using statistics as for example different types of evidence for policymaking.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Higher education, knowledge production, comparative studies, symbolic power, completion, student dropouts, measurements
National Category
Social Sciences
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-133820DOI: 10.1177/1474904116667363OAI: diva2:971624
Swedish Research Council, 2009:6065
Available from: 2016-09-17 Created: 2016-09-17 Last updated: 2016-09-19

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Carlhed, Carina
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