Sirpa Lappalainen

Sirpa Lappalainen
University of Helsinki | HY · Institute of Behavioural Sciences

About

35
Publications
4,529
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452
Citations

Publications

Publications (35)
Article
Full-text available
In recent decades, disability policy programmes and conventions have been underlining how improving educational opportunities, especially for post-compulsory education, improve the employability and independence of disabled people, and thus their position in society and as citizens. However, little attention has been paid to actual educational prac...
Article
Full-text available
Public debates in Finland on the unwillingness of boys to learning literacy have called for masculine role models to promote reading. This article analyses a privately funded project where two adult males lead a series of gangsta rap workshops during the Finnish language and communication lessons. The workshops were aimed at students in male-domina...
Article
This article focuses on how students make use of different spaces in one compulsory school in Iceland and how gender is produced through activities in these spaces. Ethnographic fieldwork was conducted for three months in 2016 among 8th and 9th graders at one public school in Iceland. Our analysis is based on poststructural and material theorisatio...
Article
Full-text available
This study investigates how nation is taught, learned, practiced, and performed in early childhood educational settings in Australia and Hungary. Analysis, based on comparative multi-sited ethnography, reveals nationhood as a taken for granted, unreflexively promoted framework for organizing social life. The “pedagogy of nation” operates in differe...
Article
This article provides a meta-analysis of what characterises existing ethnographic research on gender and class in the context of Nordic early childhood education. The encompasses research on education and gender or social class in the Nordic countries published in Nordic and non-Nordic scientific journals as well PhD theses published in the Nordic...
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Full-text available
Although Finnish politics relating to the Roma tend to be perceived internationally as fairly successful, several obstacles exist for the Roma in education and the labour market. Training of Roma mediators has been actively promoted in Finland to improve the school performance and equality of Roma pupils. This article, based on ethnographic researc...
Article
Educational equality has been a central tenet framing educational policy in Nordic welfare states and stimulating school reforms in the 1960s and 1970s. However, the conceptualisation of equality has fluctuated, reflecting the changing economic and political climate within which policy statements have been made. In this article, we analyse policy a...
Article
The article examines policies intended to promote the basic education of Roma and Traveller minorities in Finland, Sweden, and Norway by analysing key national Roma and Traveller policy (n = 5) and education policy documents (n = 3). Analysis shows how the Finnish, Swedish, and Norwegian Roma policies translate the general policy aims of improving...
Article
Drawing on Foucauldian genealogy and the methodological approaches of cultural studies, the authors address the question of how assumptions of citizenship have functioned in Finnish cultural texts on swimming. The analysis is developed from texts from the early twentieth century to the present day. Based on a theoretical approach that combines the...
Article
Full-text available
Disability studies in education (DSE) is an interdisciplinary field derived from the need to re-conceptualise special education dominated by a medical perspective on disability. In this article we identify what characterises DSE research and consider whether there is a case for arguing for a specific field of DSE in Finland and Iceland. Our analysi...
Chapter
In previous decades, education was largely a national project for Finland, but more recently, it has been coopted by transnational, especially European policy-making. It is argued that education is designed now primarily to produce capable citizens for the trans-national labour-market. In this chapter, analysis focuses on the aims concerning the cr...
Article
Vocational education has a historical legacy of being low-status and aimed at producing skilled workers. Students with low marks in comprehensive school are still often guided to the vocational educational track. In this article we examine how mathematics teaching in a vocational educational context is framed (henceforth VET). Therefore, our aim wi...
Chapter
This chapter demonstrates collaborative and cross-cultural analysis combining ethnographic studies conducted in multiple educational settings. The authors give two examples of their work, illustrating how the interpretations are jointly built. In the first example, the analysis is focused on the construction of a ‘special student’ in a lower second...
Article
Assurance of citizens’ social rights and minimization of social differences have been central tenets that have framed the educational policy of Finland and the other Nordic welfare states. Equality has been on the official agenda in educational politics and policies since the comprehensive school reforms of the 1960s and 1970s. However, the concept...
Article
This article examines the notion of citizenship as constituted in the intersection of disability and educational policies, especially for rehabilitative instruction and guidance for the disabled in pre-vocational education. Drawing from critical disability studies and poststructural discourse analysis, we examine various disability and educational...
Article
In the current economic order, the basic duty of citizens is to find placements in the internationalising labour market. Internationalism has been a common educational objective throughout Europe. Previously associated as a feature of middle-class subjectivities and academic education, it is implemented in the agenda of vocational education as well...
Article
Full-text available
In this article, we discuss teachers' reflections on the relation between teaching and care in the two most gender-segregated sectors of vocational upper secondary education in Finland, namely Health and Social services and Transport and Technology. We first discuss the concepts around education, teaching, taking care for and caring about students,...
Article
In the current article, we explore educational practises in terms of the transition from pre-primary education to compulsory schooling. Our cross-cultural analysis is based on two ethnographic studies conducted in three educational institutions providing pre-primary education: two in Finland and one in Sweden. The analysis is guided by feminist the...
Article
Full-text available
In this article, we discuss the usefulness of collaborative, multi-sited and cross-cultural ethnography. Giving three examples from our work, we suggest that it is possible to find new kinds of interpretations by joint reflections that draw from several studies with their own research questions. The cases presented discuss teachers' embodiment and...
Article
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In this article our focus is on the persistent gendered divisions in educational routes of young people who choose a vocational path after compulsory education in Finland. We analyse how gendered subjectivities are constructed within the practices of educational and vocational guidance and within student cultures in the comprehensive school, as wel...
Article
Full-text available
This article analyses how Finnish vocational teachers make sense of the meanings of gender in their work. The context of the study consists of the two most gender segregated environments of vocational education: the female-dominated Sector of Health and Social Services and the male-dominated Sector of Technology and Transport. Our analysis draws on...
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In this article, we are interested in how employment – or employability – is connected to citizenship, and how the ideal subjectivity of worker-citizens is discursively constructed in curriculum texts. The ‘worker-citizen’ is a social construction that connects closely the notion of worker and the notion of citizen. Our analysis is based on Finnish...
Article
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This article is based on ethnographic studies in the context of vocational education: two in Sweden and one in Finland. The Swedish data originate from the Vehicle programme and the Child and Recreation programme; the Finnish data originate from the social and health-care sector. In this sense, the authors' perspective is cross-cultural. The articl...
Article
Full-text available
The transition from secondary to upper secondary school often means a higher level of responsibility for the student. Moreover, the concept desirable citizenship is even more important today in the era of educational restructuring and neo-liberal orientation that emphasises individualised responsibility. In this paper, we explore how young people d...
Article
This paper focuses on embodied practices in processes of nationalization among preschool children at the age of 6. It analyses how children define themselves and others, how they characterize and frame Finnishness through embodiment. The analysis is based on an ethnographic study in two preschool classes. It is argued that nationality works in a ge...
Article
In children's lives the start of school is a turning point: compulsory education is their first encounter with civil duties. This important step in the process of becoming individual citizens is permeated with strong emotions and ambivalent expectations. However, the representations of school are created, established and negotiated in educational e...
Article
This article analyzes how professionals of early childhood education define Finnishness and how they deal with ethnicity. It illustrates how nationality and ethnicity are actualised in the everyday practices of preschool. As part of a one‐year ethnographic study in two preschools, the study reveals that the liberal version of multiculturalism adopt...
Article
Full-text available
This article is part of an ethnographic study in two preschool classes, which aims to explore issues of nationality, ethnicity, gender, and citizenship. It explores firstly, the ways in which nationality, ethnicity and gender are discussed and negotiated by preschool girls at the age of six and how they become positioned in national space and secon...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract: Nationality, ethnicity and gender in children's peer relations and preschool practices. Diss. -- Helsingin yliopisto.

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Project (1)
Project
PAHE -project aims to find out how the social space of educational choice is constructed in relation to different public and private actors in the higher education field, and to investigate how the logic of the field influences applicants’ choices of and access to higher education with regard to their social background. Two concrete higher education perspectives characterise this research: the process of transition and the different processes of privatisation in the field. The project participates in the academic debate around access to higher education and its relation to educational equality and equal opportunities. https://www.helsinki.fi/en/projects/privatisation-and-access-to-higher-education