Education and Training, Career Aspirations: ‘That’s What I Remember’

  • Lucas Walsh
  • Anne KearyEmail author


This chapter examines trends in education and training through both individual and collective narratives of how three generations of women mediate and manage the transition to, and between, study and work. Testimonies are located within wider trends, historical contexts with sociological implications being drawn. The women’s testimonies, in the main, echo wider national trends while providing more nuanced accounts of continuity and change across, and between, generations. Early school leaving was more common for the older generations. Changes in the labour market during the twentieth century and how they impacted on school transitions are discussed. During the later twentieth century, the younger generation of women is generally more highly educated with many participating in post-school study and training. In addition, this third generation is beginning to embark on less traditionally gendered careers. For some, pathways changed across generations as new areas of study, training and work were pursued. Yet, enduring themes also emerged in relation to post school options across some mother–daughter groupings.



The authors thank Joanne Gleeson for her research assistance in developing the historical overview of this discussion.


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of EducationMonash UniversityClaytonAustralia

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