Learning by the Apprenticeship System

Learning by the Apprenticeship System   An apprenticeship is a form of acquiring skills in the relationsh続きを読む

SKY[Skills and Knowledge for Youth] ホーム Learning by the Apprenticeship System

Learning by the Apprenticeship System

 

An apprenticeship is a form of acquiring skills in the relationship between masters and apprentices. It is common in developing countries, especially in the informal sector. The apprenticeship system is often regarded as a feudal system because it sometimes involves chores such as daily housework under the hierarchical relationship with the master. On the other hand, it has been argued that since the apprenticeship system unifies working and learning at the same time, the acquired skills are directly linked to skills necessary for labor and contribute to closing the skill gap (ILO, 2019). As this form of education is different from schooling, learning theories based on apprenticeship are controversial.

Legitimated peripheral participation as advocated by Lave and Wenger formalizes learning as a practice occuring in a community (Lave et al., 1991). This is an explanation of a learning process in which newcomers firstly participate in peripheral activities and gradually proceed to engage in core activities. Unlike school education, this theory shows that because of the space where you participate involves peripheral activities, it is not necessary to take an introductory class. Likewise, since the participants have already decided to participate in the apprenticeship because they spontaneously want to learn, there is no need to consider the motivation for learning. There is also a debate about cognitive apprenticeship which tries to incorporate the essence of apprenticeship into school education as a teaching method (Brown et al., 1989).

On the other hand, it has been argued that it is difficult to deal with trends in required skills that occur as a result of changes in social structure because the apprenticeship system is centered on the skills of masters (Becker, 1972). In other words, the above-mentioned learning theory about apprenticeship is a theory about a community that only aims to acquire the skills from masters, and it can be said to occur in a closed community that does not fully consider changes in social structure. As such, it is certain that it contributes to filling a skill gap within a particular community centered on a master’s skill, but it remains ambiguous as to whether apprenticeship properly accords to the skills required from society.

(Yujiro Yamazaki)

References
Becker, H., S. (1972). School is a lousy place to learn anything in. In Learning to work, ed. B. Geer. 86-110. London: Sage.
Brown. J. S., Collins, A., and Duguid, P. (1989). Situated cognition abd culture of learning. Educational Researcher 18: 32-42.
ILO. (2019). Quality Apprenticeships: Addressing skills mismatch and youth unemployment. SKILLS for Employment. Policy Brief. Geneva. ILO SKILLS and Employability Branch.
Lave, J. and Wenger, E. (1991). Situated Learning: Legitimate peripheral participation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.