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Denmark  [1]  Context of national VET/HRD policies

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In recent years, a number of PhD studies have focused on the consequences of Reform 2000, in particular with a view to the students in VET. Focus has been 
- on students' background and choice of, expectations to and benefit from VET;
- on training and learning forms within the work-based training; 
- and on teaching and learning forms within the work-based training.

The Reform 2000 has been criticised by researchers for wrong targeting, as the profile described in the Reform papers corresponds better with the profiles found in general upper secondary education, and for increasing the overall drop-out rate, as the individualised modularised structure is more suitable for strong students than the many VET students who are tired of school, whose strengths are within the practical subjects not the general subjects, and who require a more stable school environment with steady school mates and a teacher who takes the responsibility. 

Furthermore, a current research project is focusing on practice-related didactics and how teachers relate the theoretical teaching at the basic courses to the practical training taking place in enterprises.  This project is related to the policy issue of reducing the drop-out rate in VET by making the school-based education and training more relevant and more motivating for the students. The project is carried out by Vibe Aarkrog, the Danish University of Education.

At Roskilde University, the Danish Ministry of Education is funding a large-scale project focusing on subject and professionalism in the transition from education to work. The aim of the project is to describe transition patterns from VET to the labour market and the relations between VET subjects and profiles and job content and job profiles. The study will focus on both the institutional transition patterns and the students' perception of transition patterns. The project will be carried out by Christian Helms Jørgensen and Morten Smidstrup, Roskilde University. 

Furthermore, a number of PhD projects were initiated in 2005 focusing on the changing roles of teachers in VET - as a consequence of Reform 2000, the relationship between EU VET policy priorities (the Copenhagen process) and national VET policy priorities, and immigrants in the VET system (a specific priority area involving the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Integration). 
These projects are taken into consideration by the Working Group on the Modernisation of VET, a group which has been set up by the Government in relation to the Globalisation initiative. The group came out with a report in March 2006 and is expected to make concrete proposal by the end of 2006. 

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Source: Cedefop - National Research Report Denmark (details see Bibliography)
Editor: Sabine Manning  © WIFO