Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Being Employable and Becoming a Lifelong Learner

LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course


DEPARTMENT Education Studies

DESCRIPTION The study-unit explores different conceptualizations of work and learning (functionalism, conflict theory, symbolic interactionism, phenomenology, post-modernism, feminist theories as well as theories of rational choice) and the changing nature of employment and education in the globalised world. The focus of this unit is on an expanded conception of the relationships between work and lifelong learning that includes changes in paid, household and volunteer work as well as of learning in the ‘knowledge–based economy’ which embraces formal and non-formal education as well as ubiquitous informal learning. In addition, the unit discusses issues associated with unemployment and underemployment among youth in ‘risk society’, school-to-work transitions and the place of career guidance as well as social inequality regarding access to education and apposite work related to individuals’ abilities and aptitudes. This unit also aims to explore the role of professional associations and trade unions in promoting fitting and fulfilling employment and optimal conditions for lifelong engagement in learning. Students will be exposed to case studies to apply the knowledge learned in this study-unit.

Study-unit Aims:

The study-unit aims to ...
- familiarise students with different conceptualizations of work and lifelong learning and enable them to apply this knowledge in their teaching practice.
- expand students' understanding of the current national and international labour market trends and the relationships between work and lifelong learning.
- increase students' awareness of the labour market issues and to enable them to identify, synthesise and evaluate the information relevant for employability and participation.
- explore the role of professional and trade associations in promoting decent employment conditions and wide participation in lifelong learning.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to ...
- comprehend the main conceptualizations of employability and lifelong learning and develop analytical skills.
- understand the relationship between work and lifelong learning based on the course material and the available labor market information.
- describe, explain and discuss the need for active engagement in the lifelong learning process based on the provided literature and involvement in analysis of the labour market conditions.
- demonstrate competency in applying their conceptual knowledge to solving practical employment and lifelong learning-related problems.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to ...
- through lectures, readings and group discussions, develop their professional skills and be able to find, organize, critically analyse, interpret and make use of the available readings and information related to the world of work in the increasingly complex knowledge-based global economy.
- identify and examine the main employment-related issues based on the relevant and reliable labour market information.
- given a practical problem related to engagement in lifelong learning, students will develop analytical skills, the ability to integrate a variety of information sources and propose solutions for complex learning-related problems.
- develop their communication, research and the information appraisal skills based on the examples from literature and discussions about everyday problems in the context of lifelong learning and career choices during this study-unit.
- through classroom discussions students will develop skills to gather, evaluate and integrate the information about employment and lifelong learning and to propose viable practical solutions.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

Main Texts:

- Grint, K. (2005). The sociology of work. (3rd edition). Cambridge: Polity Press.
- Bills, D.B. (2004). The sociology of education and work. Blackwell.
- Borg, C. & Mayo, P. (2006). Learning and Social Difference. Challenges to Public Education and Critical Pedagogy. Paradigm.

Supplementary Readings:

- Ahier, J., & Esland, G. (1999). Education, training, and the future of work. I, Social, political, and economic contexts of policy development. London; New York: Routledge/Open University.
- Baldacchino, G. (1990). Worker cooperatives with particular reference to Malta: An educationist's theory and practice. The Hague: Institute of Social Studies.
- Baldacchino, G. (2001). Human resource management strategies for small territories: An alternative proposition. International Journal of Educational Development, 21(3), 205-215.
- Borg, C., & Mayo, P. (2005). The EU Memorandum on lifelong learning. Old wine in new bottles? Globalisation, Societies and Education, 3(2), 203-225.
- Darmanin, M. (2006). Gender equality in Malta: A Southern European perspective. Scottish Affairs, 56(Summer), 69-87.
- English, L. & Mayo, P. (2013). Learning with adults: A critical pedagogical introduction. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.
- Flude, M., & Sieminski, S. (1999). Education, training, and the future of work. II, Developments in vocational education and training. London; New York: Routledge in association with the Open University.
- Hager, P. (2005). What Is vocational education? In Hare, W., & Portelli, J.P. (eds.). (2005). Key questions for educators. Halifax, NS: Edphil Books.
- Livingstone, D.W. & Raykov, M. (2013). Adult learning trends in Canada. Toronto: Centre for the Study of Education and Work, OISE.
- Mayo, P. (2007). Adult education in Malta. Bonn: DVV-International.
- Mayo, P., Pace, P. J., & Zammit, E. (2008). Adult education in small states: the case of Malta. Comparative Education, 44(2), 229-246.
- Merrill, B. (2009). The role of working class (other women) in critical education. Diskurs Teoria de la educacion, educacion y cultura en la socieded de la informacion, 10(3), 282-300.
- Ministry for Education and Employment. (2014). Malta National lifelong learning strategy 2020: draft for public consultation. Malta.
- Raykov, M., & Livingstone D.W. (2014). Interest in unions and associations in a knowledge-based economy. Just Labour, 22(Autumn), 3-23.
- Raykov, M. & Borg, C. (2015). Early School Leaving and Wellbeing in Malta and Beyond - A statistical analysis. San Anton Palace, Malta: PFWB.
- Sultana, R.G. (1992). Education and National development: Historical and critical perspectives on vocational schooling in Malta. Msida: Mireva.


Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Case Study (Take Home) SEM1 Yes 40%
Assignment SEM1 Yes 60%

LECTURER/S Joseph Gravina
Peter Mayo
Joseph Vancell

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The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.