Work is the refuge of people who have nothing better to do. : Oscar Wilde

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Background Study Source for Career Developers

The Open University of the United Kingdom offers quite a number of free short courses in a variety of subjects. It appears that the ones most likely to be of interest to career developers are in the 'Society' topics category. Here are three of the courses that look interesting to me.

Economics explains discrimination in the labour market”: Discrimination in the labour market exists in many forms: the ‘glass ceiling’ ageism, racism, etc. This unit will help you look at this problem with a new perspective: through economics. You will learn how economists have tried to understand what drives this distortion of the labour market and why women and the ethnic minorities seem to suffer the most.

Living and working in the new economy”: The new ‘service economy’, is it a direct result of globalisation? This unit examines the switch from manufacturing to services and looks at the impact of information and communication technologies on the economy as a whole. The ‘new economy’ has many benefits, but at what cost?

What do we mean by ‘family’?”: The idea of ‘family’ is very powerful in contemporary UK culture and policy. Family lives have been the subject of many anxieties both at the personal and policy levels. How do public debates relate to people’s everyday experiences of families? In this unit, you can explore the many attempts at defining ‘family’ and why these complex and contradictory meanings are important to us. We begin to unpick questions of power and inequality, to test our everyday assumptions about families, and to reflect on the values underpinning them.

I have previously mentioned how to find videos of interest to career developers on this blog: