School knowledge versus everyday knowledge is a fundamental issue in mathematics education. The objective of this research project is to describe, analyze and understand adults' mathematics - containing work competences - including social, ethnic and gender related aspects - in relation and demands made on students' mathematical qualifications in formal vocational education.
The working model for researching the dynamics of adults' mathematics in work and for school combines a general approach - starting with demands from the labour market and school mathematics - and a subjective approach starting with the individual's needs and competences in work. The problem complex will be studied through empirical investigations - quantitative (survey) and qualitative (observations, interviews and document analysis) - in interplay with theoretical constructions.
Mathematics is integrated within workplace activities and often hidden in technology: mathematical elements are subsumed into routines, structured by mediating artefacts (e.g. texts, tools), and are highly context-dependent. As a discourse of education, lifelong learning assumes that learning takes place in all spheres of life. This project seeks to reverse the one-way assumption from school knowledge to workplace knowledge and to learn from workplace activity what might be appropriate for vocational education and training with implications for general schooling in Sweden.