Professional Learning between Past Experience and Future Work

Kirsten Weber

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review


    This paper is about learning, qualification and possible professionalization in human service work. With human services we primarily refer to work related to health care, child care, social work, and education. I present empirical findings from different phases of training and workplace experience of Danish child care pedagogues. The investigation is part of a human resource centered research program studying the development of welfare institutions and systems in Denmark. Welfare institutions have been developing since World War II as an important aspect of and precondition for the socio-economic development of Denmark from a predominantly rural, agricultural society to an entirely urban industrial and service producing society.
    This development has required a substantial new labor force in the first place. It has drawn on “spontaneous” qualifications, primarily by recruitment of female workers with experiences of care and social competences, based on family work, and just adding a limited practical training to work in each particular institution. Gradually some of these human services have improved their level of knowledge and service quality. The formation of professionalism goes through acknowledging reality as well as defensive “shyings-away”. It cannot be produced by a formal education alone, neither can it emerge from life experiences alone. In the development of research methodology we explore the interplay of regression and progression, the lifelong and everyday active functions of what was named the consciousness of everyday life.
    Translated title of the contributionProfessionel læring mellem livserfaring go fremtidigt arbejde
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalFrontiers of Education in China
    Issue number3
    Pages (from-to)329-346
    Number of pages18
    Publication statusPublished - 2010

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