Creating a Learning Society?: Learning Careers and Policies by Stephen Gorard;Gareth Rees

By Stephen Gorard;Gareth Rees

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Conclusion At one level, our discussion suggests no more than the need to transcend conceptions of the learning society that are rooted in economistic models of market behaviour. Although, as we have argued, such conceptions currently dominate official discourse, this conclusion may, nevertheless, be regarded as unexceptional. However, what is significant is that it is rooted in an analysis of the social relations of lifelong learning, rather than simply expressing an alternative set of normative preferences.

Consequently, between 192139 400,000 people left South Wales, causing the age profile of those remaining to rise, as the leavers were mostly young people (Humphrys, 1972). Unemployment disappeared temporarily during the Second World War, but the underlying industrial decline continued. Between 1945-70, the pattern of industrial life in South Wales was transformed. By 1970, nearly everyone was in a job that did not exist in the same place in 1945. The coalmines were nationalised in 1947, but the numbers employed in mining dropped again from 112,000 in 1944, to 106,000 in 1960 and only 60,000 by 1970.

In these circumstances, then, participating in learning after compulsory schooling, when it does take place, demands a reworking of personal history. Participation in adult learning: operationalising a theoretical model The theoretical model that we have outlined provided the basis for our empirical research into the determinants of patterns of participation in adult 26 Lifelong learning trajectories learning. In operational terms, therefore, it was necessary to draw on a variety of sources and corresponding analytical techniques.

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