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The structure of the academic curriculum has remained largely unchanged throughout the 1970s and 1980s, with A Levels surviving as the ‘gold standard’, despite the efforts of the ‘alliance’ to reform post-16 education and training. Increased participation and attainment in the academic curriculum is to be achieved through more students satisfying the standards required to proceed to A Level study and then on to higher education. A key principle in the attitude of successive Conservative governments to the issue of participation and attainment in the academic curriculum has been the preservation of A Levels. The Government has favoured an incremental approach which has resulted in a series of attempts to broaden the academic curriculum. Much concern has been focused on the impact of teaching and learning styles on student motivation in academic courses. The last decade has witnessed a re-evaluation of the processes of learning particularly in pre-vocational and vocational courses.

Original publication





Book title

16-19: Changes in Education and Training

Publication Date



42 - 53