Transmission of learning between contexts and arenas: A qualitative study of young boys in vulnerable positions, their learning identities and possession of knowledge


  • Marie Møller-Skau


Learning, knowledge, interests, contexts, aesthetics, vulnerable youth, school, leisure, indirect approach.


This article illuminates transmissions of learning between informal and formal contexts. Three young boys with low socio-economic backgrounds, unstable family relations and challenges at school, are examined through their general interest and fascination for aesthetic phenomena, such as music, art and animation. How these boys benefit from their interests and knowledge at school, highlights factors that promotes and inhibit the transitions between their personal lives at leisure and a school context. The following research question is asked: How do boys in vulnerable positions benefit from their own interest and knowledge at school? To provide answers to this question, perspectives from the approach of learning lives offers a suitable theoretical framework. From this theoretical view, the focus is on how people create their own learning identity and use their own concepts of knowledge in different contexts. To interact with the boys and acquire insight into their experiences and their life, a research interview with an indirect approach is used. The method can be characterized as an informal conversation, based on the informant´s own subjective perspectives. Analyzed and framed as a narrative study, the finding shows that fruitful transitions seem to depend on how these boys´ knowledge, skills and interests are met at school. The meetings between the boys and the school are therefore affected by the social relations that occur in these contexts, and whether the boys get the opportunity to benefit from the way they like to work and learn. This is discussed through theories which can help to illuminate and recognize these elements, for to then put them in a theoretical framework.