23 SES 10 B, PIAAC (Part 1)
Symposium to be continued in 23 SES 11 B
Policy documents in the UK prioritise human capital over social capital outcomes in adult literacy programmes (e.g. Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, 2014; Scottish Government, 2012) and thus reflect the dominant OECD discourse that links literacy ‘directly with economic development, individual prosperity and vocational achievement’ (Hamilton, 2012: 170). In addition the powerful standards perpetuated through international assessments such as PIAAC have become become taken for granted in our everyday practices. This means that the focus is on the national productivity agendas that are in the interests of industry and the state (Rizvi and Lingard, 2010). In addition the narrow domains of knowledge perpetuated by these interests become accepted as the way things are and so are not easy to challenge (Gorur, 2014). This discourse tends to drive a curriculum that prioritises narrow employment skills-focused learning that neither respect learners’ own goals nor value their life experiences. This paper examines how these policies are implemented at the local level through research with experienced literacies practitioners on their perception of the opportunities and constraints offered through the focus on employability. We found that many practitioners resisted a narrow deficit focus through a shared ideological commitment to a ‘funds of knowledge’ perspective (González, Moll & Amanti, 2005). This commitment arose from their views that the purpose of literacy was about developing the whole person thus focusing on a ‘learning’, rather than a, ‘teaching’ curriculum (Lave & Wenger, 1991). However, how outcomes are measured can distort the curriculum especially when external funding prioritises narrow employability skills. We will show how, despite these constraints, many practitioners have found creative ways of resisting this dominant discourse and asserted their agency to support the development of powerful literacies that are based in rich and meaningful practices.
Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (2014) Adult Literacy and Numeracy: Government Response to the House of Commons Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee. Fifth report of session. 2014-15. London, BIS. González, N., Moll, L., and Amanti, C. (2005). Funds of Knowledge: Theorizing Practices in Households, Communities, and Classrooms. New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Publishers Gorur, R. (2014) Towards a Sociology of measurement in education policy, European Educational Research Journal, 13 (1) 58-72 Hamilton, M. (2012). The effects of the literacy policy environment on local sites of learning, Language and Education, 26 (2): 169-182 Lave, J., and E. Wenger, (1991) Situated Learning: Legitimate Peripheral Participation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Rizvi, F. and Lingard, B. 2010. Globalizing Education Policy, Abingdon: Routledge Scottish Government (2012) Improve the Skill Profile of the Nation: Scotland Performs, Edinburgh: Scottish Government
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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