Vocational education and training (VET) for ICT employment: preparing women for work.
In: Women and ICTs thorugh the lifecylce, 8-10 November 2010, UOC, Barcelona, Spain.
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This paper attempts to articulate the problematic issues that contribute to women’s participation or lack of it in ICT technical and vocational education and training (VET ). This is the training and education that prepares women for employment in IT jobs, or helps re-skill or up-skill them once they are employed. The paper has three sections. The maps out what is encompassed by the category (technical and) vocational education and training (VET), to give some idea of the context and institutions in which the specific activity of ICT VET takes place, focusing on non-university institutions. The second section reviews data about women’s participation in ICT VET from four countries and one large commercial training provider in order to explore whether different educational systems and contexts produce differences in women’s participation in ICT VET. The third and final section of the paper explores the main factors that contribute to differences in women’s participation. It also raises questions about whether those active in initiatives for women in ICT training are using the best categories to understand the nature of women’s engagement in ICTs, or whether it would be more useful for gender equity to reconceptualise the nature of ICT work and skills.
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