Vocational Knowledge – Regions and Recontextualisation Capability

Part of the Technical and Vocational Education and Training: Issues, Concerns and Prospects book series (TVET, volume 24)


This paper focuses on the constitution of vocational knowledge, and the development of an analytical framework that seeks to identify and characterise how that knowledge is constituted. Bernstein’s concept of a ‘region’ is outlined as a socio-epistemic entity into which various aspects of disciplinary knowledge are ‘recontextualised’ to meet the requirements of practice. This leads to a discussion of both the ‘internal’ social relations that exist between organisations involved in recontextualisation, and the ‘external’ factors that influence the character of regions, including relations between occupations and the broader macro-context pertinent to vocational practice. Issues of ‘recontextualisation capability’ are considered particularly important for understanding the nature of regions. While it is possible to conceive this capability at a variety of ‘levels’ or in relation to various activities, how knowledge achieves validity in the vocational community and provides a basis for a curriculum is particularly foregrounded here. The discussion is bolstered with examples of regions and recontextualisation processes taken from recent studies of higher apprenticeships in England between 2012 and 2014. In addition, there is some brief engagement with comparative research into vocational education and training systems in order to better understand how differing national contexts and policy-driven change may (re)orientate regions and their capacity to recontextualise.


Vocational Education Human Resource Management Knowledge Structure Human Resource Management Practice Disciplinary Knowledge 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Bath Spa University, Institute for EducationBathUK

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