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Narrowing participation? Contesting the dominant discourse of employability in contemporary higher education

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This article considers the various roles the so-called 'employability agenda' plays in helping to narrow the terms of participation in higher education (HE) around definitions of educational value dominated by neoliberalist notions of 'human capital'. The article argues that as these definitions become naturalised in the behaviour of learners and their teachers it behoves us (academics, careers educators, learning developers et al.) to draw attention to the conditions of learning and to the broader scheme of values around work and identity, and models of success, which shape them in the 21st Century university.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2016-04-01

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  • The Journal of the National Institute for Career Education and Counselling, widely and informally referred to as 'the NICEC journal', is designed to be read by individuals who are involved in career development-related work in a wide range of settings including information, advice, counselling, guidance, advocacy, coaching, mentoring, psychotherapy, education, teaching, training, scholarship, research, consultancy, human resources, management or policy. The journal has a national and international readership and is published twice a year (in April and October) in partnership with the Career Development Institute (CDI), the UK-wide professional body for the career development sector.
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