researching education

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  • Created by: viki anne
  • Created on: 04-11-13 16:23

Researching Pupils-Key problems

Power and status 

  • School children have less power and status than adults
  • so its more difficult for them to state their veiws openly 
  • therefore sociologists have to consider ways to overcome this

Ability 

  • Pupils vocabualry, power of self expression, thinking skills and confidence more likely to be limited compared to adults 
  • so researchers have to be careful how they word questions to make sure they are understood clearly

Ethical issuses

  • young people are more vulerable to physical and social harm 
  • need more than just informed consent to access the children
  • difficult to explain to young children what research entails 
  • child protection issues-personal data should not be kept unless vital for research 

Practical issuses 

  • need to consider participation as questioning children for a long period of time seen as inapproptiate 
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Researching Teachers -Key problems

Power and relationships

  • Teachers aren't equal in school
  • but more powerful than pupils because of age, experience and resposibility within school
  • They have a legal resposiblilty and duty of care towards the young people they teach 

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  • nature of the classroom reinforces the power of the teacher
  • e.g my claasroom so reseacher may be seen as a trespasser 

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  • teachers often over worked 
  • resulting in them being less cooperative even if they want to help 

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  • teachers are used to being inspected 
  • - so they are experienced enough to put on a show which could effect the validity of the results
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Researching Classrooms -Key Problems

classrooms are a closed setting

  • clear boundaries and restrictions on access and behaviour within them teachers and the school control time, behaviour, noise, dress, language and layout 
  • young people will never experience the same environment again after they've left school 

Classroom interactions

  • teachers and pupils experienced at disguising real thoughts and feelings 
  • so they conceal from the researcher too

 pressure

  • young people may be subjected to pear pressure and feel the need to conform this affects they way they respond to being researched ie. they may need to be supervised when filling in questionnaires 
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Researching schools - Key problems

Formal Oragnisation 

  • school is a hierachy system with rules 
  • researcher may become part of the hierachy system 
  • e.g. students see researcher as teacher and teachers see them as inspectors 

Access

  • head teachers have the power to refuse access
  • they may keep certain parts of the school off limits e.g.to steer away the researcher away from teachers with poor classroom control 
  • timetables can limit time of research 

Legal duty 

  • schools may have data on pupils which may be useful to a sociologists research but school have a duty which may resrict access to the researcher 
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Researching schools - Key problems

Formal Oragnisation 

  • school is a hierachy system with rules 
  • researcher may become part of the hierachy system 
  • e.g. students see researcher as teacher and teachers see them as inspectors 

Access

  • head teachers have the power to refuse access
  • they may keep certain parts of the school off limits e.g.to steer away the researcher away from teachers with poor classroom control 
  • timetables can limit time of research 

Legal duty 

  • schools may have data on pupils which may be useful to a sociologists research but school have a duty which may resrict access to the researcher 
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Researching Parents - Key problems

  • They can influence the childs education in a postitive or negative way and by their involvment in school through parent teacher contact through out their childs upbringing 

Practical issuses

  • Parents are outside of school making it difficult to contact and research
  • e.g. their are few opportunities to view parents helping their children with homework 

Response rate 

  • some middle class parents are more willing to return a childs education questionnaire as they are  more pro-school this makes finings unrepresentative
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