• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This Handbook provides a state-of –the art overview of the field of workplace learning from a global perspective. The authors are all well-placed theoreticians, researchers, and practitioners in this burgeoning field , which cuts across higher education, vocational education and training, post-compulsory secondary schooling, and lifelong education. The volume provides a broad–based, yet incisive analysis of the range of theory, research, and practical developments in workplace learning. The SAGE Handbook of Workplace Learning draws together a wide range of views, theoretical dispositions, and assertions and provides a leading-edge presentation by key writers and researchers with insight into the field and its current state.

Workplace Learning and the Organization
Workplace learning and the organization
Introduction

Any attempt to understand learning at work has to consider the wider context in which a particular workplace exists. The primary function of any workplace (in both the private and public sectors) is not learning, but the production of goods and services (Rainbird et al., 2004). Furthermore, organizations have to function within the boundaries of a broader political economy (Unwin et al., 2007; Hall and Soskice, 2001; Ashton, 2004). These factors influence the extent to which organizations feel they are more or less constrained in their approach to workforce development, including, for example, whether they should commit to long-term programmes such as apprenticeships. Such considerations pose considerable challenges to national vocational education and training (VET) systems ...

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