Cardiff Metropolitan University
Trajectories towards failure considerations regarding post-16 transitions within the UK.pdf (207.08 kB)

Trajectories towards failure: considerations regarding post-16 transitions within the UK Sport-Education sector

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-04-26, 16:32 authored by David Aldous, Andrew C. Sparkes, David BrownDavid Brown

 This paper offers insights into the increasing dichotomy that exists between official forms of opportunity and access and the actual ‘lived experience’ of young peoples' trajectories towards careers in the UK's market-orientated Sport-Fitness and Physical Education employment sectors. It does so by drawing on data generated by an 18-month ethnographic study to provide a case study of two students who chose to make the transition from a Foundation Degree in Sport Coaching (FdSc) onto a ‘Top Up’ Bachelor of Science (BSc) Sports Science and Coaching qualification. The paper illustrates their experiences of this transition in relation to the following phases of their trajectory (1) facilitators of transition (2) managing expectations (3) transformation and (4) isolation. The findings highlight how, for some individuals, current transitions facilitate a critical distance between individual dispositions towards education and the positions and practices of higher education. We suggest that education and employers must further listen to the voices and experiences of students that transcend the rhetorics of official policy discourse to facilitate a process in which the conditions of transition may begin to be reimagined. 


Published in

Sport, Education and Society


Taylor & Francis


  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)


Aldous, D., Sparkes, A.C. and Brown, D.H.K. (2016): 'Trajectories towards failure: considerations regarding post-16 transitions within the UK Sport-Education sector, Sport, Education and Society', 21(2), pp.166-182

Electronic ISSN


Cardiff Met Affiliation

  • Cardiff School of Sport and Health Sciences

Cardiff Met Authors

David Aldous David Brown

Cardiff Met Research Centre/Group

  • Physical Health Education for Lifelong Learning

Copyright Holder

  • © The Publisher


  • en

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