Class Differences in Achievement: External Factors

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  • Class Differences in Achievement: External Factors
    • Cultural Deprivation
      • Cultural Capital
        • Bourdieu
          • Cultural Capital
            • Knowledge, attitudes, values, language, tastes and abilities of the MC.
            • Mc more likely to develop intellectual interests which are highly valued and rewarded in education.
            • WC culture is devalued by the school, leads to exam failure. They 'get the message' and respond with things like truancy or just not trying.
          • Educational Capital
            • Qualifications
          • Economical Capital
            • Being better equipped, have more money to buy resources etc. Can convert economical capital into educational capital by sending children to private schools or getting extra tuition.
          • Sullivan (2001)- used questionnaires to survey 465 pupils.
            • Assessed their cultural capital by asking about TV viewing habits, reading etc..
            • People that read complex fiction and watch a serious documentary possess a greater cultural capital.
              • Children of graduates were more likely to possess a greater cultural capital and do better at GCSE.
            • Concludes that the better aspirations and resources of the MC explain the gap in achievement.
        • Capital usually refers to wealth. MC usually possess all 3.
      • Parents' Education
        • Parenting Style
          • Educated parents emphasise consistent discipline & high expectations. Encourage kids to learn & explore.
          • Less educated parents have harsh and inconsistent discipline- 'behaving yourself' or 'doing as you are told'.
            • Prevents learning independence and self-control, leading to less motivation and problems with teacher interactions.
        • Parents' Educational Behaviours
          • Educated parents are more aware of what their children need to succeed and make progress.
          • Educated parents are more able to get better advice on childrearing.
          • Educated parents recognise more value on educational visits to museums and libraries etc..
        • Use of Income
          • Better educated parents are more likely to have higher incomes and buy things that help their child's educational success- eg educational toys and books- Bernstein & Young (1967).
          • Educated parents- better understanding of nutrition, better meals.
        • Class, Income and Parental Education
          • Feinstein- parental education is a big influence regardless of class or income.
            • Better educated parents tend to have children who are more successful at school.
            • May explain why not all WC children do badly in education, and not all MC children do well.
        • Douglas (1964)- WC parents place less value on education. Less ambitious, less encouraging.
        • Feinstein (2008)- MC parents tend to be more educated, able to give children advantage by how they socialise them.
      • Language
        • Speech Codes
          • The Restricted Code
            • Used by WC. Limited Vocab, simple sentences and grammar. Descriptive, not analytic. Context bound.
          • The Elaborated Code
            • Used by MC, wider vocab, complex sentences. More varied and present abstract ideas, not context bound.
      • Working-Class Subcultrue
        • Compensatory Education
          • Programmes provide extra resources for schools and communities in deprived areas.
            • Operation Head Start in US- 'planned enrichment'. Setting up nursery classes and home visits to improve parenting skills.
          • Myth of Compensatory Education
            • Keddie (1973)- Victim blaming explanation. WC are culturally different, not deprived.
              • Keddie argues that schools should challenge teachers' anti-working class prejudices.
              • Blackstone & Mortimore (1994)- WC parents attend less parents evenings because they work more (irregular) hours, not lack of interest.
        • Sugarman (1970)
          • 4 Key features
            • Fatalism
              • Belief in fate- 'whatever will be, will be'
            • Collectivism
              • Valuing being part of a group more than succeeding as an individual.
            • Immediate Gratification
              • Seeking pleasure now instead of making sacrifices to get rewards in the future.
            • Present-time Orientation
              • Seeing the present as more important than the future and not having long-term goals.
        • Myth of Compensatory Education
          • Keddie (1973)- Victim blaming explanation. WC are culturally different, not deprived.
            • Keddie argues that schools should challenge teachers' anti-working class prejudices.
            • Blackstone & Mortimore (1994)- WC parents attend less parents evenings because they work more (irregular) hours, not lack of interest.
    • Material Deprivation
      • Housing
        • Overcrowding makes it harder to study.
          • Disturbed sleep from sharing bedrooms.
        • Lack of space for safe play and exploration.
        • Risk of accidents. Damp/cold housing can cause illness.
        • Temporary housing, constant changes of school, disrupts education.
      • Diet and Health
        • Howard (2001)- young people from poorer homes have lower intakes of energy, vitamins and minerals.
          • Poor nutrition affects health. Problems with digestion resulting in absences due to illness.
        • Wilkinson (1996)- Children from poorer homes are more likely to have behavioural/ emotional problems like hyperactivity and anxiety. Negative effect on education.
        • Blanden & Machin (2007)- children from low income families are more likely to fight and have temper tantrums, also known as externalising behaviour.
      • Financial supports and the cost of education
        • Lack of financial support means that children from poorer families have to do without equipment & miss out on experiences that can help with their education.
          • Bull (1980)- 'cost of free education'
        • Children from poorer families have hand-me-downs and cheaper yet unfashionable equipment.
          • May lead to being isolated and stigmatised by peers.
        • Children from poorer families may have to work due to lack of funds. No time to study.
        • Flaherty- stigmatisation prevents 20% of kids from taking FSM.
        • Smith and Noble (1995)- Poverty acts as a barrier. Poorer quality local schools and not being able to afford private tuition etc..
      • Fear of Debt
        • Attitudes towards debt may deter WC from going to university.
        • Callendar & Jackson (2005)- most debt averse students (typically WC) were over 5x more likely to not apply than debt tolerant students (typically MC).
          • Nationwide questionnaire surveying nearly 2,000 prospective students.
        • Increases in tuition fees from 2012, maximum £9,000 per year, deter WC more.
          • UCAS (2012)- number of UK applicants fell by 8.6% compared to 2011.
        • WC students who go uni are less likely to get financial support from family.
          • National Union of Students (2010)- online survey of 3,863 students- 81% higher class got financial support compared to 43% of lower class.
        • Financial factors restrict WC's choice of university.
          • Reay (2005)- WC students more likely to apply to local unis so they could live at home and save on travel costs. More likely to have a part time job to fund their studies.
        • Dropout rates are higher for unis that have a lot of poorer students.
          • 16.6% drop out at London Metropolitan, large WC intake, compared to Oxford (1.5%) where a lot of the students are from private schools.
        • National Audit Office (2002)- WC spend 2x longer paying off debts.
      • Refers to poverty and a lack of material necessities.

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