Employability and school uniform policies: Projecting the employer’s gaze

A Olosson, Rachel K Shanks* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article examines employability discourse within school uniform policies as a way to justify uniform. The uniform policy of every publicly funded secondary school in Scotland (n=357) was studied using content and discourse analysis. Employability discourse was grouped into three themes: School as preparation for work; school to replicate a work environment; and young people creating a good impression for employers. The rationale of the uniform is revealed as a technology through which the employer’s gaze is projected onto pupils.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)628–645
Number of pages18
Issue number4
Early online date5 Sep 2022
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2022


  • Employability
  • Foucault
  • school dress code
  • school uniform
  • secondary school


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