Countering the risks of vocationalisation in Master's programmes in International Development

in Learning and Teaching
Author:
Tobias DenskusMalmö Universitytobias.denkus@mah.se

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Daniel E. EsserAmerican Universityesser@american.edu

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We review the ontological and pedagogical origins of International Development graduate education in the context of increasing pressures to 'professionalise' graduate curricula. We apply Giroux's concept of 'vocationalisation' to argue that professionalisation risks undermining the field's intellectual foundations in an elusive quest to equip students with functional rather than intellectual skills. Acknowledging ever-growing competition among graduates for gainful employment in this sector, we argue that instructors of International Development should recommit to the field's reflective tradition by creating spaces for transformative education and develop a repoliticised ethos that critically engages global capitalism.

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Learning and Teaching

The International Journal of Higher Education in the Social Sciences