Work Life Of Unskilled Elderly Sociology Essay Example
Work Life Of Unskilled Elderly Sociology Essay Example

Work Life Of Unskilled Elderly Sociology Essay Example

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  • Pages: 18 (4770 words)
  • Published: August 11, 2017
  • Type: Research Paper
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This paper starts with a brief overview about the aged employment in Singapore and follows by the purpose and aims of the proposed research. Before the treatment of the chosen method for the proposal, a reappraisal of literature on research methodological analysis relevant to the proposed subject is briefly described.

The chosen method for the proposal is the descriptive phenomenological method. Section 4 provides the nature of cognition of the research and besides the item logical thinking for choosing the method. Considerations for the execution are mentioned in the same subdivision. The drumhead subdivision is the last subdivision in subdivision 5.

There are two appendixes and mention list at the dorsum of this write-out. The appendixes are the literature reappraisal relevant to aging and the guided inquiries for the interview.

Overview of Aged Employment

On Oct 1st,


2012, the International Day of Older Persons, the United Nations released a study and warned authorities around the universe they must work out how to get by with an aging population [ 1 ] . The study done by the UN Population Fund and private group HelpAge International showed that immature workers in many developing economic systems may non be able to shoulder the load of aged populations, as the population ages. Some illustrations of the alarming figures presented are as follows:

  • Singapore: - Now: 10 % of occupants above 65
  • 2030: 20 %
  • Universe: - Now: For 1st clip, more people above 60 ( 810million ) than kids
  • 2022: 1 billion people above 60
  • 2050: Group above 60 outnumbers those under 15

One of the remedial programmes suggested by the main executive of HelpAid, Richard Blewitt was the abolishment of a compulsory

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retirement age [ 2 ] . He even said that aging was mismanaged, and that planetary action programs from all states were needed to guarantee the explosive figure of people over 60 could go growing drivers and Godheads. If these suggestions are taken on, more aged will stay at the workplace in the close hereafter and be expected to lend to driving economic systems.

Elderly in Singapore

The Singapore economic system grew at an mean one-year rate of 8.0 % from 1960 to 1999 [ 3 ] . With the exclusion of 2001 to 2003 with growing of -2.0 % to 2.2 % due to the point com crisis and SARS outbreak period, the economic system was ever in the same fast growing path with a record high of 14.5 % in 2010. As Singapore moved from labour- intensive industries to technology-intensive and value-added industries to a knowledge-based economic system, the impressive growing was supported by the educated and adept work force. They were invariably upgraded with relevant cognition and accomplishments from assorted developing plans driven by the Singapore authorities. In 1980 [ 4 ] half of the work force consisted of unskilled laborers with less than 6 old ages of formal instruction. This per centum was reduced to 12.6 % in 2011. The unskilled occupations left were so filled by foreign workers and those local workers who merely had up to 6 old ages of basic instruction and had missed the accomplishment upgrading chance wholly. Unskilled worker is defined for this survey as 1 who has no particular preparation and whose work involves simple responsibilities necessitating small or no independent opinion or old experience.

There is no

official statistic about how many unskilled local aged are still in the work force today. However, figures released in December 2012 by the Ministry of Manpower supplying information on employment by age group and occupation categorization, indicate that the figure of unskilled aged in Singapore can be estimated and should be in the scope of 45,000 to 60,000. This figure is approximately 2.75 % of the entire work force in Singapore which may non be a important figure. However, these 45,000 to 60,000 figures are about 20 % of the entire figure of 257,000 aged in Singapore which is non a little per centum. ( Aged is defined as 60 old ages old and above for this survey ) . This figure may increase further in coming old ages as more aged may hold to stay in the work force to maintain the economic system turning.

The proposed research is to analyze the work life of these unskilled elderly in Singapore and to understand their positions towards aging. How are the present working environments for these unskilled elderly? Are these aged happy with their work life? How do they accommodate to their life as they age? What is their attitude towards aging? This research proposal is aim to happen the replies for these aged group.

Aim and Objectives of the Undertaking

Gerontologists, research workers and policy analysts portion the position that societal establishments such as workplace should be encouraged to back up the ripening procedure for the aged [ 5 ] . If the set-up of the workplace is in-line with the theoretical accounts of successful ripening ( described in the appendix B ) , both employer and

aged employee may profit from the current tendency seeing increased Numberss of aged workers in the labour force. The survey would wish to develop understanding about the unskilled elderly, how they adapt to the working environments and how they cope with aging in today 's Singapore society.

The research aims to measure the work life of the unskilled aged and their position towards aging in order to place determiners, which can heighten their aging life. The specific aims of this survey are as follows:

Describe the unskilled aged work life as portion of their ageing life.

Understand how the aged adapt employment.

Outline the state of affairs of these aged in society and finally urge alterations.

Provide mention for others covering with unskilled aged at workplace.

To make so, the research will seek to reply the undermentioned inquiries:

Are workplaces a friendly scene for successful ripening?

How make unskilled elderly adapt to working life?

Make unskilled elderly enjoy life and aging while prosecuting with employment?

Why do they necessitate unskilled occupations at this clip of their life?

What are their perceptual experiences of others ' position about their functions at workplace and in the society?

How can their life be better with or without these unskilled occupations?

In the affiliated appendix B the literature relevant to aging was reviewed. The undermentioned subdivisions foremost review the research methodological analysis used in societal scientific disciplines and outlines the features of the outstanding attacks. The subsequent subdivision describes the nature of cognition of this survey and the method selected. The justification and grounds of the research method selected will be in subdivision 4.2.

In societal scientific discipline the two most popular signifiers of research methods are quantitative and qualitative research [ 6

] . Following subdivisions review these methodological analysiss and the related attacks.

Quantitative Research

The traditional model for thought is basically the quantitative research paradigm. Quantitative research workers loosely adopt the methods developed over centuries in natural scientific disciplines by explicating hypothesis derived from some theoretical foundations [ 7 ] . Quantitative methodological analysiss test theory deductively from bing cognition. They quantify the variables of involvement and analyze the relationships between the variables mathematically. The focal point is on generalization and working towards the development of cosmopolitan statements or Torahs. In societal scientific discipline survey, the informations collected hence tendency to be aggregated across single in order to prove a specific hypothesis.

Qualitative Research

Qualitative research focuses on smaller units of society and on the apprehension of societal state of affairss and the significances that persons attach to behaviour. It aims to bring out the quality of the societal universe in which we live and is through the eyes of the persons being studied. The findings of qualitative research are from the analysis and reading of positions collected and the complete theory is therefore developed inductively [ 8 ] .

Social scientists have published many books related to the constructs and methods of qualitative research in recent old ages but a clear and concise definition of qualitative research can barely be found. The ground can be due to what Denzin and Lincoln have described: `` qualitative research cuts across subjects, Fieldss and capable affairs. It surrounds with complex, interrelated household of footings, constructs and premises '' [ 9 ] .

Cresswell described qualitative research with five chief attacks, viz. the narrative survey, phenomenology, grounded theory, descriptive anthropology and instance survey [

10 ] .

Mohammed Ali [ 11 ] pointed out their four common features: foremost, centrality of societal world and worlds ; 2nd, look intoing a changing world ; 3rd, construing the research world in a constructive mode, that the researched contributes intending to the research and 4th, try to understand and seek significance.

There are many other qualitative research attacks with different names or intents but there are with similar features, for illustrations, historical, action research, content analysis and generic qualitative method [ 12 ] .

Constructivism as a Paradigm in Qualitative Research

To further analyze the differences of assorted research attacks in societal scientific disciplines, we may necessitate to look at the four chief paradigms in research, i.e. positivism, post-positivism, critical pragmatism and constructivism. We need to cognize the package of their premises about the nature of world ( ontology ) , the position of human cognition ( epistemology ) , and the sorts of methods that can be used to reply research inquiries ( methodological analysis ) [ 13 ] . Among them, constructivism is the epistemic model underlying qualitative research. Constructivists assume a relativist ontological place. They claim that the universe consists of multiple single worlds influenced by different history, civilization context, experience and etc. The `` truth '' of the world constructed by the method is non their chief concern but the world must `` do sense '' with the people involved. The research worker does non come in into people 's heads but he/she demands to reflect their subjective positions through observation and groking their feel objectively. Constructivism is an epistemic belief about what `` cognizing '' is and how one `` come

to cognize '' [ 14 ] . Constructivists believe in single readings of the world, i.e. the apprehender and the known are synergistic and inseparable.

The philosophical foundation of qualitative research assumes that world is socially constructed [ 15 ] . There is no individual, discernible world but there are multiple worlds, or readings, of a individual event.

There are many qualitative research methodological analysiss can non be classified under a specific attack but there are in line with the features of qualitative research. The intent of these researches may be to understand a peculiar phenomenon or position of certain group. Their methods of informations aggregation can be from interviews, observations or paperss. The findings of these surveies include the description and analysis of the issues. These types of researches can be the basic or general qualitative researches. Alternatively of trying to give qualitative research a perfect definition, Merriam [ 15 ] besides have four features of qualitative research in her book to depict the nature of qualitative research: the focal point is on procedure, apprehension, and significance ; the research worker is the primary instrument of informations aggregation and analysis ; the procedure is inductive ; and the merchandise is richly descriptive.


Phenomenology is one of the attacks to inductive qualitative methodological analysis. It is a school of idea that emphasizes a focal point on people 's subjective experiences and readings of the universe. Phenomenologist constructs the cognition of the phenomena being studied and the beginnings of positions are straight or indirectly from the people involved. It is the survey of the lived experience.

There are two dominated phenomenological doctrine [ 16 ] . Husserl 's nonnatural phenomenology

is based on the premise that head and organic structure are separate. The significances of the universe exist out at that place, which is separate from human existences, and human-beings need to happen the significances of the universe. The undertaking of phenomenology is to supply a clear, undistorted description of the ways things appear.

On the other manus, Heidegger 's hermeneutic phenomenology is based on the premise that head and organic structure are non separate. The significances of the universe depend on the ways that human-beings encounter the universe. It emphasises that construing the phenomena is the manner to understand them.

Phenomenological Methods

Phenomenological enquiry is non tantamount to phenomenological doctrine. The doctrine buttocks has to interpret to a research method and it provides the foundation for the method. There are assorted phenomenological methods and among them the two outstanding methods, van Manen hermeneutic phenomenology and Giorgi descriptive phenomenology [ 16 ] . new wave Manen 's method slopes to Heidegger 's hermeneutic phenomenology while Giorgi 's method is based on Husserl 's nonnatural phenomenology severally.

The Giorgi 's method aims to uncover indispensable general significance constructions of a phenomenon. It is to bring forth accurate descriptions of human experience. The method follows rigorous informations aggregation and analysis procedures. The analysis and determination has to be closely based on available informations and rigorous limitation on research workers [ 17 ] . They have to set aside ain experiences, values, perceptual experience and etc. in order to understand the people being studied. The four strict stairss for treating the information [ 18 ] are ( a ) reading the full description to acquire a sense of the whole statement ;

( B ) know aparting intending units within a position ; ( degree Celsius ) transforming the topic 's every twenty-four hours expressions into the research worker 's more narrow disciplinary linguistic communication ; and ( vitamin D ) synthesising transformed intending units into a consistent statement of the construction of the phenomenon.

Researcher utilizing van Manen 's method assumes the function of an translator or even a meaning-maker. He/she has to attach himself/herself to the state of affairs under survey and `` becomes more to the full portion of it '' . van Manen emphasizes that phenomenology has no specific method but instead is an attitude or an attack to research. Alternatively, he has six methodological subjects [ 19 ] : ( a ) `` turning to the nature of the lived experience '' , ( B ) `` look intoing experience as we live it '' , ( degree Celsius ) `` reflecting on indispensable subjects '' , ( vitamin D ) the art of authorship and revising '' , ( vitamin E ) `` keeping a strong and orientated relation '' , and ( degree Fahrenheit ) equilibrating the research context by sing parts and whole '' . Van Manen is besides peculiar about utilizing poetic linguistic communication as he put it as `` the lone equal manner to show human significance '' .

These two attacks are different in the attack of analyzing informations but the informations aggregation is the accents of both methods in order to supply concrete descriptions of the phenomenon under survey.

There are few common ways of roll uping informations: interviews by in-depth interviews or concentrate group, paperss like diary

or journal, observations and etc. Data analysis ever starts when first set of informations is available. It can be used to compare with old work so as following aggregation can be improved. It is besides a mean to determine if the information collected so far have reached the concentrated point. If interview is the beginning of informations, it should be conducted in the manner that the interviewees can show in their linguistic communication and ain manner freely and allow them do any points which they feel of import. The aim is to understand their positions and how they think about the issues, including their values, feelings, codification of behavior, past life experiences and related events and etc. The research worker can therefore understand the topic lodger with holistic position. It can besides assist to understand the advancement or sequence of the event from assorted angles and to derive better deepness with all right inside informations.

This subdivision will first discourse the nature of cognition of this survey and so look at why non a different method. A few key schemes to implement the chosen method will be discussed at the terminal of the subdivision.

Nature of Knowledge of this Survey

The research aims to happen out the work life of the unskilled aged and their positions towards aging.

Harmonizing to Denzin and Lincoln [ 20 ] , qualitative research focuses on reading of phenomena in their natural scenes to do sense in footings of the significances people bring to these scenes. A qualitative method, utilizing in-depth interviews with the aged will enable to happen out how the aged feel about their work life and how they view aging. This

research is hence a qualitative research to place the 'essence ' of human experiences, refering a phenomenon, as described by a group of selected unskilled elderly in a survey.

This qualitative survey will be situated within a constructivist paradigm. The research design will be an embedded individual instance survey [ 21 ] utilizing a phenomenological attack to foreground experiences of unskilled aged workers in Singapore. By questioning these aged, the survey will garner in-depth information about the aged, their perceptual experiences about work life and their attitude towards aging.

The context of the instance is the work life and position towards aging of all the unskilled aged who are 60 old ages old or older in Singapore. Any of the aged within this context can be the embedded unit of analysis for the instance survey.

The pick of utilizing phenomenological methodological analysis through in-depth interviews with the aged reflects that the aged keeping the informations and cognition I seek. I am confidential that they have the capableness to show their worlds which are dependable and valuable. Through inductive informations analysis collected from the interviews I will be able to construct upwards from little spots of informations until I can paint the whole image of the phenomenon under survey. The primary end is to build the cognition of the phenomenon, i.e. the life of the unskilled aged in Singapore, but non to generalize decisions. It is to detect the kernel of the phenomenon without anterior hypothesis or premises.

As respect to part to knowledge, the findings of the research will high visible radiation whether our unskilled aged life is in line with the successful aging theoretical account. There is small

related cognition at present and hopefully this research may be able to contract the spread. As the population is aging and more active aged are needed to back up the economic system, it is of import to understand experiences of aged workers in Singapore. Most of bing surveies in the related topics were non based on the state of affairs of unskilled aged in Singapore who age in a extremely populated metropolis state with no other option. Hopefully, the research can besides detect the deterrences of successful aging specifically in the context of unskilled aged in Singapore and can be a mention for the policy shapers.

Why Phenomenology is chosen?

This subdivision will analyze the suitableness of the chosen research method. First, the comparing will be made with quantitative attack and so the ground on why a phenomenological method from the qualitative attack is selected.

Quantitative Approach?

Feelingss and positions from the aged are really subjective and personal. Each individual has his/her ain account about the significance of life. Reducing feelings and positions to a few cardinal variables studied quantitatively would non supply utile findings.

There is besides really small survey on aged capable done in Singapore, particularly on unskilled aged. Findingss on those done in western states on similar topics may non be applicable here. The appropriate variables for a quantitative research for our aged here is non easy to be justified and established.

On the other custodies, qualitative attacks are effectual in placing the intangible factors, such as societal norms, socioeconomic position, gender functions and faith. Qualitative attack is appropriate for the proposed research as its factors are non evident at the minute. When these factors are identified and

become clearer, quantitative attack can be reconsidered once more.

Qualitative Approachs

Besides being the preliminary survey of this aged subject, qualitative attacks have the advantage of leting in-depth and item survey [ 7 ] of this societal issue, and besides let for the outgrowth of unforeseen findings. It can bring out more about people 's experience by concentrating on little group before prosecuting to a larger graduated table of survey. However, these are the affiliated advantages of utilizing qualitative methods. The cardinal ground of choosing a research methodological analysis is closely related to the subject and inquiries being posed [ 7 ] .

The proposed research subject is a phenomenon about the work life of aged and their positions towards aging. Why phenomenology forms the theoretical model for this survey will be explained in following subdivision.


Below are three different manner in specifying phenomenology. There are from Patton [ 22 ] , Creswell [ 23 ] , and Rossman & A ; Rallis [ 24 ] severally. With these three definitions, first I will seek to understand the cardinal significances and at the same clip examine if the proposed research topic have the same features and coveted aims. Later, before the terminal of this subdivision, I will re-assemble the research inquiries and its nonsubjective utilizing the cardinal words from these three definitions to corroborate it is the right method for the probe.

`` aˆ¦a phenomenological studyaˆ¦is one that focused on descriptions of what people experience and how it is that they experience what they experience. One can use a general phenomenological position to clarify the importance of utilizing methods that gaining control people 's experience of the universe without carry

oning a phenomenological survey that focuses on the kernel of shared experience. '' [ 22 ]

`` Research workers search for necessities, invariant construction ( or kernel ) or the cardinal implicit in significance of the experience and stress the intentionality of consciousness where experiences contain both the outward visual aspect and inward consciousness based on memory, image and significance. `` [ 23 ]

`` Phenomenology is a tradition in German doctrine with a focal point on the kernel of lived experience. Those engaged in phenomenological research focal point in-depth on the significance of a peculiar facet of experience, presuming that through duologue and contemplation the quintessential significance of the experience will be reviewed. Language is viewed as the primary symbol system through which significance is both constructed and conveyed. The intents of phenomenological enquiry are description, reading, and critical self-reflection into the `` universe as universe '' . Central are the impressions of intentionality and lovingness: the research worker inquires about the kernel of lived experience. `` [ 24 ]

There are few common points and assorted specific phrases in these definitions. We base on these to discourse whether the proposed research can be accomplished by the phenomenological method.

`` Peoples experience '' : This is the common words mentioned in the three definitions as the primary aim of the methodological analysis. The methodological analysis is to happen out the phenomenon from what people have experienced. This is precisely the end of the proposed research. The phenomenon of my survey is about the aged work life and their positions towards aging. The mean to happen out these is through the aged ain experiences. The design bases on the

in-depth interview for this intent where the aged can portion their lived experiences and ideas.

`` Meaning of experience '' : This mentioned in both Creswell and Rossman & A ; Rallis ' definitions. Patton put it as `` how it is that they experience what they experience '' i.e. how people experienced it. The consequence of the phenomenological method is a description of what people experienced and how they experienced it. It means that the probe has to include the `` what '' plus the `` how '' of the phenomenon. Experience is a topic addressed by phenomenology. And experience and its constructions constitute an object of phenomenological probe. Besides depicting the work life of aged, the proposed research will besides look into the significance of work life experienced by the aged, particularly related to the positions of aging. This is besides in line with purpose of the proposed research which is to happen out the `` what '' and the `` how '' of their work life.

`` Intentionality of consciousness '' : This phrase bases on the premise of the life-world of each individual and it is defined as the sum sum of physical milieus and mundane experiences that make up an person 's universe. Life-world is the get downing point of all cognition [ 25 ] .

Consciousness is the `` window of the universe '' . It refers to single consciousness of alone ideas, memories, feelings, esthesiss and environments. To understand worlds, one needs to understand consciousness. It is through the kingdom of consciousness that the phenomenon is exposed [ 19 ] .

Intentionality refers to the ability to move with intent. It refers

to the fact that consciousness is ever directed toward something other than our egos ; `` it is the indispensable characteristic of consciousness '' [ 26 ] .

Although there are other positions about the significances of this phrase, in the context of the above definitions, it points out that a individual 's experience contains the subjective elements linked to his/her ain life-world constructed by assorted witting knowing actions of ideas, memories, feelings, esthesiss and environments. This reminds me that the significances of experiences gathered from the aged are their ain positions which can be subjective. To absorb their revealed experience with implicit in significances to the full, I have to set aside my ain experience, perceptual experience and reading during the informations aggregation stage or called as the procedure of `` epoche '' or `` freedom from guesss '' by Husserl [ 25 ] . The more common term of depicting this procedure is `` bracketing '' [ 19 ] . This is a necessary procedure in order to enter the true positions of the aged without falsifying their witting purpose. `` Bracketing '' will be my focal point during the interview and transcribing stages.

To acquire to understand human phenomena as lived and experient, Giorgi [ 26 ] besides pointed out that the research worker should first look into the single point of position, i.e. the realisation of capable consciousness perceived in the objects. The method in roll uping this interior position of the aged in this proposal is questioning. Its intent is to enter the perceptual experience of their lived experience and nil is filtered out from the interviewer.

`` Kernel '' : The ultimate

end of the phenomenological research worker is to cut down the significances of experience to their indispensable construction, i.e. kernel of the experience. This can be achieved through the procedure of `` eidetic decrease '' [ 19 ] ( for illustration, thematic analysis ) that transforms the `` bracketed '' informations to the full significance of kernel. This is my ultimate end as to happen out the significance, construction, and kernel of the lived experience of the phenomenon of work life for the unskilled aged in Singapore.

There are assorted informations analysis methods as to obtain the `` kernel '' . Each method has a different attack with its philosophical belief attached. As a affair of personal penchant, the Giorgi 's descriptive phenomenological method will be used in this survey. I prefer the findings of the survey can straight repeat the unskilled aged positions with really minimal deformation.

From the above scrutiny, my proposed subject and research inquiries absolutely fall under the rubric of phenomenology. The information beginning is from the in-depth interviews with the unskilled elderly. It will be straight from the people lived experiences of their life-world. I am cognizant that the disclosure of experiences to me is a witting knowing action and its content may hold subjective component. I have to bracket my ain belief, perceptual experience and experiences during the interviews so as the information will be every bit near as to the subjective positions of the aged from their ain readings of the universe. The interview will cover what are their work life and besides the affiliated significances, i.e. how their work life and attitude towards aging are. The Giorgi 's descriptive

phenomenological method will be used for the information analysis. The inductive consequences of the information analysis of these lived experiences are the constructed cognition of unskilled aged in Singapore. It includes the significance, construction, and kernel of the lived experience of the phenomenon for this group of people.

Schwandt [ 20 ] peculiarly pointed out that phenomenological enquiry is appropriate to turn to significances and positions of research participants. Its analysis is to understand `` how the mundane, inter-subjective universe is constructed '' . My research design is to garner the lived experiences from the aged straight and the analysis is to understand their mundane work life and inter-subjective positions about aging. This truly reinforces my determination of taking phenomenological method for the survey.

Implementation Considerations

To guarantee the above method described can accomplish the coveted intents, below are the few facets required some attendings at the planning and execution provinces.


As the proposed qualitative method has to let analyzing the issues in deepness and item, the interviews will hold to let hearing subjective positions and logical thinking of the research participants. Small cognition is presently available related to unskilled elderly in Singapore and this qualitative attack allows aggregation of information from the aged 's experience. Therefore, the design of the survey has to enable the interior positions of aged to be heard. Their ideas, attitudes, involvements and values, experiences and significances are the focal point of the probe. Interview will be preferred to carry on at their usual topographic points and this will besides let detecting and understanding their life style. It can be at their place, workplace, or any of their favorite topographic points. This will give

a better feel about the interviewees, why they want to prosecute to employment and how they adapt into their work life.


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