in the press | 22.03.2019 |

PhD student’s research on pupils’ school subject choices featured in Tes Scotland Magazine

The research of University of Glasgow PhD Student, and UBDC associate, Barry Black has been featured in the 1st March 2019 edition of Tes Scotland Magazine (subscription required to read online).

In the article, entitled ‘The illusion of choice’, Barry looks at the external and institutional factors that influence the often life-altering decisions of young people choosing which subjects to study at school.

He says “I don’t think many of us living now ever appreciate the gravity of decisions we had to make back “then”. This is certainly the case with school subject choices. I, and many others I discuss this with, can trace back what we do today to ticking those columns that selected our Standard Grade and Higher subjects, many years ago…The process has been an accepted part of progressing through school since at least the introduction of comprehensive education. Stripped back, however, it seems strange that, at such an early age, we ask people to begin formally selecting the life path they wish to go down.”

Barry’s research Chances or Choices? Influences on Young People’s Learning Decisions aims to investigate the social and structural factors that influence pupils’ school subject choices in the Greater Glasgow region and assess the implications for employers' engagement in schools.

Tes Scotland Magazine cover image

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