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The legitimacy of upper secondary health care programme. On recruitment, manpower provision and core curriculum

Research project Due to low rate of qualification from training programmes for auxiliary nurses, demographic changes and retirement of care workers, the competence of care workers is a current issue in sweden.

Head of project

Stina Johansson
Professor emerita

Project overview

Project period:

2009-01-01 2010-12-31


Finansår , 2009, 2010

huvudman: Stina Johansson, finansiar: Institutet för arbetsmarknadspolitisk utvärdering/IFAU, y2009: 512, y2010: 407,

Participating departments and units at Umeå University

Department of Social Work, Faculty of Social Sciences

Research area

Social work

Project description

Formal training for personnel in the care for elderly has been under discussion and transformation for the last 50 years. Should their competencies be based on medical or social knowledge; is personal experience a better ground for vocational training than formal training; should education be organised for youth / adolescences or adults, are questions frequently asked. It has not been easy to recruit staff to the elderly care sector, no matter how one formulates the strategies for education and competence.

Our research has focused on the experience that staff and managers in elderly care have expressed on the upper secondary health care program. Our earlier results show that the upper secondary health care program lacks legitimacy among actors in the field. Skills learned at school do not come in handy when working in the elderly care sector. Auxiliary nurses experience that they do not get to use the skills learned at school. Nursing assistants are trusted with exactly the same work tasks. Managers, on the other hand, state that personal experience from working in health care or social care sectors or experiences of taking care of family members’ often provides a better schooling than formal training.

This research project aims at producing a more detailed understanding the upper secondary health care program: its values and quality aspects and experiences of the pupils who attended the education. Two studies are to be carried out; study 1 is a statistical mapping of a) students attending the upper secondary health care program; b) those who have graduated from the upper secondary health care program and c) their current work situation. Study 2 is a survey study, asking persons who have graduated from the upper secondary health care program about their current work situation, experiences from school and further directions in their working lives.

Latest update: 2018-06-20