If Career Education Is the Solution, What Is the Implied Problem?

A Critical Analysis of the Timetabled Subject of Educational Choice in Norwegian Schools

In: Career and Career Guidance in the Nordic Countries
Author: Petra Røise


The Norwegian curriculum subject of Educational Choice aims to facilitate career learning in lower secondary school. A curriculum, as a policy document, describes the government’s expectations for what all Norwegian students should be taught. The aim of this study is to contribute to a more nuanced interpretation of how this curriculum frames and limits the opportunities for articulation of problems and alternative views. Methodically, Bacchi’s What’s the Problem Represented to be (WPR) approach to analysis is applied. Analysis indicates that the curriculum is embedded in a neoliberal rationale. Five problem representations that frame this rationale within the curriculum, are identified. A discussion of these problem representations contributes to challenging silences in the curriculum and explores alternative ways of thinking about career learning.