Choosing futures: issues and implications
DOI link for Choosing futures: issues and implications
Choosing futures: issues and implications book
Within this book we have followed the decision-making pathway of young people by focusing chronologically on the main decision points that emerge within the education and training system of England and Wales. At each stage we have considered both the range of factors that are inﬂuential in choice which emerge from macro-scale analysis of decision-making, and the process of choice as experienced by young people (and their parents) in relation to those decision points. This latter analysis has helped to draw out the micro-scale individual experiences and challenges of choice in education and training markets. A strong theme which underpins our view of choice, though, is that in reality these choice points are not discrete, unique experiences but are simply part of a complex web of choice and decision-making that links every choice and decision from birth to labour market entry. While there are speciﬁc emphases and issues at particular choice points, there are also many common themes and linkages between them. Furthermore, decisions at each point can at least shape, and may ultimately strongly determine, the opportunities that fall into the individual’s choice environment in the future. The traditional research approach in student choice of focusing on only one choice point, while providing a useful part of the picture, simply contributes to the jigsaw puzzle. We feel that there is now enough evidence from those jigsaw pieces to enable us to gain some understanding of the whole jigsaw picture. We are also keenly aware that within this book we have arbitrarily chosen to limit our analysis of choice up to and including higher education entry/labour market entry at 18, so that the focus is on decisions taken while young people are at school or college. This is another choice point rather than a fundamental boundary, and it is clear
from the issues that emerge that many of the factors in, and processes of, choice will continue throughout individuals’ lives as they make education, training and employment decisions.