VET and HRD research in European countries > Overview

Austria  [3]  Issues and themes of VET/HRD projects

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The previous research reports have already shown the relatively small incidence of VET research, as compared to the high proportion of VET in the overall education and training system in Austria, and also the instability of research themes and the weak documentation and information base. This year the Austrian educational research documentation is not available, thus we have to rely on the ERO Base and the REFER-Publications-Report.

The comparison of research areas by ERO descriptors shows big instabilities over time. Some areas have considerably gained weight (two fifths of publications are in those areas): Certification/ guidance/ career/ occupation; student/ trainee/ adult learner; vocational education and training (initial and continuing). Some other previously strong areas have lost weight: economy/labour market/social partners (which is still the second largest category); information technology, general/ academic education, and educational institution/ enterprise). The research products by areas have become more diverse and more evenly distributed. Interestingly, the distribution of 2005 publications has become in some important areas more similar to the distribution of the Austrian educational research documentation of 2003/04 so the change might also represent that the publications report has become more representative. Due to this comparison particularly research about the learners has gained weight, and research about teachers/trainer/professionals has lost weight.

The research areas covered by Austrian projects included in the ERO Base differ partly from the areas covered in the publications, however, the priority on issues of certification/ guidance/ career/ occupation is also mirrored in the project base. The topics of curriculum/ learning/ competences and skill development and overall VET are more strongly represented in the ERO projects.

Altogether, the data sources do not give a very clear picture of the priorities in Austrian VET research. Rather can we observe some topics which are more or less left out from research in Austria. These are:

  • first and foremost human resource development, so that we can solely speak about VET research;
  • second, the area of politics/ society/ population is also covered by a low degree;
  • the areas of teachers/ trainers/ professionals, curriculum/ learning/ competences and skill development, and educational institution/ enterprise can be less clearly rated, as there are some differing signals.
ANNEX: Selection of ERO Base projects

The list below contains the transnational projects with Austrian coordinator and the national projects in 2005.

Transnational projects

Eurostudent 2004/05 (2003-2005)

Girls crack it! Girls and Young Women in non-traditional Occupations (2002-2005)

Basic skills for young people without vocational education (2003-2006)

MEVOC Quality manual for educational and vocational counselling (2003-2006)

Vocational Qualification Transfer System (2003-2006)

DYNOT Dynamic online tool for guidance (2005-2007)

National projects

National Information-Network for Educational Guidance and Counselling (2000-2006)

Role Models and virtual mentoring for and from handicapped people (2004-2005)

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Source: Cedefop - National Research Report Austria (bibliographical details see Reference)
Editor: Sabine Manning  © WIFO