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Education, Socialisation and Citizenship:
Structuralists: Focus on purpose of education for wider
Consensus Perspective: Functionalist- Emphasise positive
Conflict Perspective: Marxist & Feminist- Critical
Functionalist- Consensus Perspective
Education important in preventing anomie
Being taught history important; teaches shared
heritage, integration and solidarity.
Family based on affective (affectionate)…

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cannot be taught in family due to its cooperative
Marxism- Conflict Perspective

Schools make proletariat passive and resigned to their
fate. Making sure they don't rebel!


Education acts as an Ideological
apparatus- `brainwashing'

Apply this to schools, it can be argued hidden curriculum
teaches obedience etc. and…

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Feminism- Conflict Perspective
Similar argument to Marxists, but the focus is on gender
inequality rather than class. Argue that the education
system legitimises gender inequality. The ways in which
boys and girls are treated differently send messages about
appropriate behaviour Etc. which in turns creates the
illusion that patriarchy…

Page 4

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Education and the Economy

Consensus Perspective- Functionalist

Education teaches skills needed for future
employment, such as literacy and numeracy but
also general skills, like punctuality.
This makes individuals more employable and gives
society a healthy economy- driving up standards
of living.

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Extends this idea, saying that school acts a
meritocratic, neutral filtering system. Education is
vital in ensuring that the right people are assigned
to the right jobs.

Conflict Perspective- Marxism
Pick up on the same principles- but see them in a negative
light. Argue education reproduces inequality which…

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Conflict Perspective- Feminist

Again, agree with Marxist that education sorts people by
social characteristics and not ability.
Schools recreate gender inequality in their sorting function:
Historically, formal restrictions- Placing restrictions on what
girls could study. I.e. not being able to study `academic'
subjects and being banned from exams.

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Processes Within the School
Teacher- student interactions
Interactionists- Focus on processes which occur within
schools. As opposed to the structuralists focus on
educations effect on society.
Most influential aspect of interactionist
thinking is how teachers `pigeonhole'
students. Part of an argument called `labelling
theory'. This looks at how teachers…

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Teachers might find labelling useful to judge
what their classes are `like'. But a number of
studies show that these labels are based less
on actual evidence that they are stereotypes.

Once given a label, it can become sticky and hard to lose!
Teachers may screen out behaviour which…

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Student Subcultures
Interactionists are also concerned with understanding the
nature of anti-school subcultures, those who oppose the
authority of schools.

Sociologists have studied the diff. Subcultures formed by diff. social
groups- particularly class, gender & ethnicity. The common idea is
that sub-cultures form as a `coping strategy' for constraints…

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The curriculum
The official curriculum
Some argue the content of the curriculum draws on cultural
capital most familiar to white, middle-class students
(bourdieu). As a result, some students identify strongly with
school and others are left `outsiders'. Some who are more
fluent with the culture of the curriculum have…




this is extremely detailed and usefull, cheers :)



Simple outline of theory and related studies

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