Continuity and change in TAFE/VET and schools: A report on the Social Organisation of Educational Practice (SOEP) Project

Year: 1995

Author: Seddon, Terri, Angus, Lawrence

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

The Social Organisation of Educational Practice (SOEP) Project is funded by a large ARC grant and is now into its second year. The project is investigating the impact of the National Training Reform Agenda and Schools of the Future (Victoria) on teaching and managing in TAFE colleges and secondary schools. After finalising a policy review phase, the project has recently embarked on a data collection phase in a secondary school and a TAFE college (the third phase involves writing up the project).

The paper will discuss the way the SOEP Project has been framed by clarifying how the notion of the asocial organisation of educational practiceA has been operationalised into a case study of educational sites. Specifically, we argue that our research focuses on the way a distinctive economic rationalist policy intervention is playing out in schools and TAFE. We are investigating how the economic rationalist privileging of markets, management, and the convergence of general and vocational education and training, creates patterns of institutional continuity and change, and how teachers and managers in schools and TAFE make sense of these institutional destabilisations. The methodologies employed in the research will be outlined and preliminary findings from the analysis presented.