Policies and Practices for Sustaining Employability Through Worklife Learning

Stephen Billett*, Sarojni Choy, Henning Salling Olesen

*Corresponding author

Publikation: Bidrag til bog/antologi/rapportBidrag til bog/antologiForskningpeer review


The complexities of adults’ learning through and across their working life, including the transitions they negotiate, and how these can be supported through educational and workplace provisions, and within their communities are rarely countenanced or accommodated in policies and practices of governments, workplaces, professional and industry bodies, and supra-national agencies (i.e., OECD). Instead, the mobilization of effort is often based on abstracted concepts such as “industry need”, “professional standards”, and “best practices” that privilege institutional goals. Moreover, those institutional efforts are often primarily directed and enacted through what can be delivered in taught courses (i.e., lifelong education) in tertiary education institutions, and are primarily concerned to offer (usually) government sponsors with certainty in outcomes. Accordingly, policies and practices associated with learning across working life are commonly focussed on these kinds of educational provisions and in ways that privilege educational discourses, courses and training programs. This focus downplays or ignores not only the needs, capacities and goals of those who are required to learn, but also the diverse source of support and circumstances where learning across working life mostly occurs. Thus, identifying more comprehensively the practices that support adults’ worklife learning in ways that promote their employability and what these mean for governmental, educational, and workplace policies is the key focus of this chapter. It draws on findings from the worklife histories and survey data of working age adults. Also, the findings that are variously distributed across separate contributions are synthesised, reconciled and advanced. The chapter then discusses practices that might be adopted by governments, tertiary education institutions, workplaces, and communities in which working age adults live and work, to support adults’ learning and development associated with their employability. Quite specifically, broad statements associated with policies are advanced, focussing on practical contributions to adults’ learning and securing desired outcomes by workplaces, communities and governments.

TitelProfessional and Practice-based Learning
Antal sider30
StatusUdgivet - 2023
NavnProfessional and Practice-based Learning


  • Community
  • Educational policies
  • Educational provisions
  • Employability
  • Government policy
  • Guidance
  • Interventions
  • Lifelong education
  • Occupational knowledge
  • Occupational practice
  • Recognition of prior learning
  • Workplace
  • Workplace policies
  • Workplace requirements

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