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Exploring a Work-Based Values Approach in South African TVET Colleges to Improve Employability of Youth: Literature Review

Paterson, A., Keevy, J. & Boka, K. Johannesburg: JET Education Services. October 2017.

While access to post-secondary education has expanded at unprecedented levels in South Africa in the last decade, access of the
country’s youth to decent work and livelihoods remains a national concern. South Africa’s Technical and Vocational Education and
Training (TVET) colleges, predominantly attended by marginalised Black African youth, are situated at a pivotal point that has the
potential to build the critical bridge between education and the labour market, and as a result, improve the employability of the youth.
In this literature review, we consider this opportunity for systemic change from a perspective that, in our view, is largely underresearched
in South Africa as well as internationally. Our focus is on student, lecturer and employer values, specifically on values related
to working and workplaces. Drawing on the available literature and a few available examples of African and international interventions
in this area, we argue that the findings can be used to design a values approach to work-based learning in South African TVET colleges.
This approach, and the interventions that can follow from it, requires the development of a conceptual framework that positions the
proposed work in relation to the relevant social science field and in relation to how it can contribute to curriculum development that
offers enhanced employment chances.

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