As commonly employed, the term vocational education can suggest a range of diverse connotations such as “industrial education” or “education for the academically less able.” However, for present purposes, this entry will use, provisionally, the mainstream sense of vocational education, that of “a formal course that equips students to engage in a specific occupation, trade, or profession.” Following this definition, the most common vocational education courses are obviously those that prepare novices for entry to an occupation, trade, or profession. These are supplemented by still other vocational education courses that aim to increase the levels of knowledge, skill, and capability of existing practitioners, so as to enable them to carry out their occupation, trade, or profession at higher levels of proficiency.

According to this characterization, vocational ...

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