• Gaining more than just vocational skills: Evaluating women learners’ aspirations through the capability approach

      Stuart, Rebecca; University of the Western Cape (Springer International Publishing, 2018-12-12)
      Vocational education and training had been a popular choice for women learners in the English Further Education sector. However, policy makers and policy researchers have characterized these women learners as providing a poor return on investment due to their failure to enter immediate employment. As a result, there have been significant cuts to funding. Such policy processes have not engaged with why these women returned to education and what they stood to gain from participation. This major absence is the focus of this chapter. Framed using a capabilities approach, women learners were asked why they had returned to FE and how they were going to use their knowledge and training. Using capabilities as a lens reveals a nuanced and complex picture of how education helps them to expand their well-being, agency, and freedom achievement.