Power and Control: Education -4- Boys

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Boys and educational attainment
Topic 4
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Gurian - Biological differences & In school factors
There is a difference between the structure of the male and female brain. When males are not active, their brains 'close down' and they are no longer learning. Males learn more effectively when doing mechanical activities e.g. sport.
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Gurian - Biological differences & In school factors Continued
Boys should spend less time on verbal activities such as reading, writing and discussions. The school focuses most of their time on this style in their curriculum. Parents should have more interest and show support in boys education.
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Gurian - Biological differences & In school factors CRITICISMS
It may be argued that it is not innate ability that causes differences in male educational attainment. Some boys do better than others. This suggests that other factors also influence male educational attainment.
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Willis (1977) - Role models
'Learning to Labour' (Neo-Marxist) = Studied 12 working class boys in Birmingham in their last months of education and first months in the factory. Unlike Marxist thinkers believe, they were not docile and complacent but aware of the situation.
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Willis (1977) - Role models Continued
The boys were accepting that their situation would most likely lead to unskilled and unsatisfying jobs and thus paid little attention to lessons and began joking around in an attempt to make their day more interesting.
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Willis (1977) - Role models Continued
The boy's attitued stems from their class consciousness and the influence of parental attitudes towards education, as it is likely that they too were in working class jobs and hold the same attitudes towards education.
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Willis (1977) - Role models CRITICISMS
The interviews were cunducted at the same time, same place and with only 12 working class boys (snap shot in time with low levels of generalisability).
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Murray (1994) - Role models
The New Right view is that the lack of a male role model in single parent families, means that boys are not given a positive stance on education by fathers.
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Mitsos & Browne (1998) - In school factors
The teacher's expectations of boys is that they are more disruptive than girls (80% of all exclusions are male).
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Mitsos & Browne (1998) - In school factors CRITICISMS (Gillborn, 2001)
Teachers expectations vary according to gender and ethnicity e.g. Black and South Asian boys are seen to achieve less than other groups. Mitsos and Browne's conclusion is too generalised, there are more dimensions to teacher's expectations.
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Robinson (2002) - Linguistic abilities
Boys play outside and don't complete school work. Their culture consists of anti-school values and perhaps make them become deviants (crime). Boys also don't have the chance to develop their comprehension and linguistic skills.
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Mitsos & Browne (1988) - Male culture
Boys hold a strong culture of masculinity e.g. macho culture. Boys overestimate their own achievement and therefore are more likely to spend their leisure time as a form of personal gratification for their achievements.
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Jackson (2006) - Male Culture
To boys, the threat of losing their traditional identity has led to the development of laddish behaviour in an attempt to redevelop their sense of male identity. This may mean educational success is viewed as a negative trait, so boys underachieve.
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Gray & McLellan (2006) - Changing attitudes
Conducted interviews with Yr.5 pupils, although many boys seemed to be disengaged and disaffected, there were still some who valued educational success. (2004 ONS = 69% of Chinese boys achieved 5 + A*-Cs at GCSEs, compared to 27% of Caribbean boys.
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Education Act 1988
The introduction of coursework has disadvantaged boys' educational success. The act was brought in to support and raise the level of girls' educational achievement because initilally they had higher levels of underachievement compared to boys.
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Education Act 1988 Continued
This introduction of coursework has led to boys being 'ignored' by the education system and therefore their levels of underachievement are now higher than girls.
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Education Act 1988 CRITICISMS
Recently coursework has been 'faded out' of the curriculum, but boys achievement has not suddenly increased as a result. A balance must be struck so that all groups receive equal support and attention, the type of support doesn't have to be the same
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

There is a difference between the structure of the male and female brain. When males are not active, their brains 'close down' and they are no longer learning. Males learn more effectively when doing mechanical activities e.g. sport.

Back

Gurian - Biological differences & In school factors

Card 3

Front

Boys should spend less time on verbal activities such as reading, writing and discussions. The school focuses most of their time on this style in their curriculum. Parents should have more interest and show support in boys education.

Back

Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4

Front

It may be argued that it is not innate ability that causes differences in male educational attainment. Some boys do better than others. This suggests that other factors also influence male educational attainment.

Back

Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5

Front

'Learning to Labour' (Neo-Marxist) = Studied 12 working class boys in Birmingham in their last months of education and first months in the factory. Unlike Marxist thinkers believe, they were not docile and complacent but aware of the situation.

Back

Preview of the back of card 5
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