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Exploring the contexts of information designed for Swedish school-leavers

Author(s): Hultgren, Frances

Journal: Svensk Biblioteksforskning
ISSN 0284-4354

Volume: 15;
Issue: 2;
Date: 2006;
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Keywords: young people | career guidance | information-seeking | discourse analysis | Sweden

In this paper the institutional origins of information designed for school leavers have been examined using a discourse analytical approach. Texts from three of the major actors in the careers guidance system constitute the empirical basis of the study. It was found that information and the individual are constituted in different ways in each of the texts. Different ways of viewing the individual and information are related to different views on the nature of society, the labour market and the individual’s position within it, and on the value of education. Such views mediate to the reader which actions may be appropriate or inappropriate to take. The implications of the study are that young people need to develop skills in the critical analysis of informational texts as a tool in discerning their own best interests in relation to the range of interests promoted by career guidance literature. Furthermore, it is suggested that technical solutions need to be developed that increase the transparency of literature designed for school leavers.
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