Alternative routes from vocational education to the labour market

R.K.W. van der Velden, B.J.H. Lodder

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This article addresses the labour market effects of two rather different forms of vocational education, full-time education with practice periods that have no employment status versus dualized education with an emphasis on continuous on-the-job/in-service training and employee status for the apprentice. Although most developed countries know both forms of vocational education, these usually have clearly different positions in a qualitative (standardization of curricula and degrees) and a quantitative (cohort shares) sense. The netherlands present an interesting case, because in this country both systems coexist and contribute largely to the vocational training of each new generation. That provides a good opportunity for investigating differences in the labour market effects of these ‘treatments’ in vocational education. In this article, differences in labour market careers (i.e. The chances of getting promoted or getting unemployed) between graduates from full-time vocational education and from the dual system are explored, using event history analysis. The results show that graduates from full-time tracks have higher chances of getting promoted. However, the period of transition to the labour market is very unstable, involving job shifts and periods of unemployment. Graduates from the dual system on the other hand experience a more stable period of labour market entry. At the same time their careers often involve many dead-end jobs, from which no promotion takes place. Moreover, they have difficulty in transfering their skills to other sectors than the sector for which they are trained.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-128
JournalEducational Research and Evaluation
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1995

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