Vocational training and knowledge development: a deeper understanding

Daniel J. Gilmour, Edward Simpson, David J. Blackwood, Claire McCallum, George Logan

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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    Construction management research literature has identified the importance of understanding the practical realities of skills and training provision and the role of reflective practice in the development of knowledge. This paper examines vocational training of experienced site staff in the development of their knowledge through SVQ training to investigate the primary factors for successful learning in site-based construction staff with a supervisory/management role. Using semi-structured interviews the impact of vocational training on individual candidates and other sitebased staff are investigated. The paper explores, through the reflections of 26 SVQ candidates (20 SVQ3 and 6 SVQ4), a deeper understanding of how site supervisors and site managers learn through the SVQ process and develop tacit knowledge through formal reflection. Reflective practice develops practical wisdom (Phronesis). The investigation explains aspects of practical wisdom and how knowledge, practice and skills are developed through vocational training. There is a clear perception by those completing the qualification that it has enabled them to perform their job better identifying numerous examples relating to problem solving, critical thinking, making decisions and leadership. It has been found that Phronesis is evident on a day-to-day basis on site activities developed through reflective practice in personal development. The reflective practice in developing knowledge also builds, within individuals, a better understanding of themselves and their capabilities through the learning achieved in the SVQ. Future work is identified around analysing the role of the assessor in facilitating Phronesis in the SVQ context.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the 32nd Annual ARCOM Conference
    EditorsP. W. Chan, C. J. Neilson Neilson
    Number of pages10
    Publication statusPublished - 5 Sept 2016
    Event32nd Annual ARCOM Conference - Mancherster, United Kingdom
    Duration: 5 Sept 20167 Sept 2016


    Conference32nd Annual ARCOM Conference
    Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


    • Learning
    • Phronesis
    • Tacit knowledge
    • Vocational qualifications


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