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Ongoing inequality in a 'knowledge economy': Perceptions and actions


te Riele, K and Crump, S, Ongoing inequality in a 'knowledge economy': Perceptions and actions, International Studies in Sociology of Education, 13, (1) pp. 55-76. ISSN 0962-0214 (2003) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2003 Routledge

DOI: doi:10.1080/09620210300200103


The concept of the 'knowledge economy' is increasingly used to underpin education policy in developed countries. In Australia, it has been applied to post-compulsory education policy, with efforts to increase retention in senior secondary education and reform of vocational education in the senior years. The article draws on two research projects with senior secondary schools. Many students (and their teachers and parents) perceived qualifications not so much as providing the knowledge considered necessary by government policy for the contemporary economy, but rather as a 'screen' used by employers to sort and select. Knowledge of opportunity structures and access to resources, while not only defined by social class, operated to create differential access to available choices in the educational market place. Despite ongoing inequality, the article argues that the hope many students expressed in relation to education can be fulfilled in practice.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:education, inequality in education
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Specialist studies in education
Research Field:Specialist studies in education not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Schools and learning environments
Objective Field:Equity and access to education
UTAS Author:te Riele, K (Professor Kitty te Riele)
ID Code:113850
Year Published:2003
Deposited By:Peter Underwood Centre for Educational Attainment
Deposited On:2017-01-24
Last Modified:2017-04-20

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