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Title: The motivations and aspirations of level 1 learners in North East England
Authors: Robinson, Lee
Issue Date: 2023
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: This thesis explores the motivations and aspirations of young people, aged 16-18, studying towards a Level 1 diploma in Music. The research took place at a large Further Education (FE) college in the North East of England and a total of 15 young people, and 5 staff members took part. An initial group of one-to-one interviews with staff members focussed on their perceptions of Level 1 learners. This was followed by a series of five research encounters with the group of Level 1 learners. Four of the encounters took place while the learners studied on the Level 1 programme and a further encounter approximately one year later, which explored if motivations and aspirations had subsequently changed. These encounters included a range of activities, resulting in a variety of data being collected. The methodology was underpinned by Bourdieu’s concepts of Capital and a key approach was to research with the young people and not on them. Findings show that aspirations are linked to employment within their chosen field and financial stability. Motivations are focussed on the acquisition of Capital, which the young people recognise can be accrued and exchanged for a career in their chosen industry. The findings also demonstrate that the young people are from varied socioeconomic backgrounds. This is counter to the narrative presented in much of the existing literature and shows that learners on Level 1 are from a much more diverse range of backgrounds than previously observed. This research calls for a wider understanding of the learners accessing education, at all levels, and suggests the link between class/socioeconomic status and level of study is no longer as clearly defined as it once was.
Description: EdD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences

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