Young people's anticipation regarding education and job

Tilde Mette Juul, Astrid Arbjerg Lundby

Research output: Contribution to conference without publisher/journalConference abstract for conferenceResearch


In Denmark there is significant political attention towards leading young people faster through the education system. Through new policies and benefit structures the government aims to reduce the number of gap years in the transition between general upper secondary education (‘gymnasium’) and higher education. At the same time a political reform has made it more difficult to take on leave, switch education and do work experience during the studies.
Simultaneously there is increasing attention on student guidance on all educational levels. The aim is on one hand to improve the students’ decision making competences, but also to an guide the students towards certain educations that is seen to fit the society’s future need for work force, especially vocational education and science education. Despite these initiatives increasing number of students choose to go to gymnasium – and less students choose vocational education.
At the Danish Centre for Youth Research we, in two separate research projects, focus on young people’s anticipation and transition patterns in lower secondary education and in the gymnasium. The data collected in the two projects indicates that many young people struggle in the decision making process because they see educational and vocational choices as definitive and therefore are afraid to take a ‘wrong’ turn. They seem to think of their educational pathway as linear with no room for detours. This can appear paradoxical on a labour market described as both flexible and unpredictable (cf. Bauman, 2000; Sennett, 1998). Furthermore many students justify their choice of gymnasium and the following gap years with the possibility to postpone the decision making. Thus the research suggests that young people’s fear of taking a ‘wrong’ career turn could be part of the reason why young people choose gymnasium instead of vocational education. In the paper we discuss the foundation we outline of young people’s anticipation regarding education and job.
Translated title of the contributionUnges forventninger i forhold til uddannelse og job
Original languageEnglish
Publication date6 Nov 2015
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 6 Nov 2015
EventAnticipation - University of trento, Trento, Italy
Duration: 5 Nov 20157 Nov 2015


LocationUniversity of trento

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