Learning the wrong things: a case study of police recruits trained at a university

Authors: Heslop, R.

http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/25443/

Start date: 2 December 2007

Most of the theorising around work and learning is premised on the idea that the learning is a positive process whereby actors learn socially useful (the right) things. Whilst it is and they do, as researchers it might sometimes be more relevant to focus on processes and situations where people learn the ‘wrong’ things. In this paper I offer empirical evidence to support this from my research into newprogramme to train police recruits. Pierre Bourdieu’s related concepts of field, capital, habitus and symbolic violence are deployed to suggest how aspects of the programme operate to reproduce facets of police culture.

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