Competence‐based vocational training: ten years on and still down the wrong path?

Simon Foot (Postgraduate Student, Sheffield Business School, Sheffield, UK)
David Megginson (Senior Lecturer, Sheffield Business School, Sheffield, UK)

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Publication date: 1 April 1996


Begins by reviewing technical progress towards establishment of an effective and standardized, competence‐based vocational education and training system, and compares this progress with the system in Germany. Describes a number of respects in which the system is failing to meet its objectives. Certain stakeholders are happier with the new approach than others. Also describes the political agenda behind the introduction of competence‐based training, and compares the individualist, business‐centred policy in Britain with the more collaborative approach in Germany. Britain’s policy towards training is consistent with its policy towards the Social Chapter. Concludes that unless the political agenda is changed, regardless of any technical improvements made, retention of the current policy will consign Britain to a low‐skill competitive position with respect to the rest of Europe.



Foot, S. and Megginson, D. (1996), "Competence‐based vocational training: ten years on and still down the wrong path?", Education + Training, Vol. 38 No. 3, pp. 17-27.

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Copyright © 1996, MCB UP Limited

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