Sociology: Education: Ethnic differences in achievement

white pupils make the lees progress between 11-16 than b/a, whites may soon become worst performing ethnic group.
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external explanations
cultural deprivation, material deprivation, racism in wider society
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cultural deprivation
low income black families lack intellectual stimulation, not able to develop intell/linguistic skills, poorly equipped for school
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Bereiter and Engelmann
language of LIB families is inadequate for educational success: ungrammatical, disjointed, incapable of expressing abstract ideas
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speaking english at home
held back if don't, 2010 official statistics; english as first lang pupils only 3.2 points ahead of second lang pupils at getting a*-c gcse e+m
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Gillborn and Mirza
Indian pupils still do well without English as their first language
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attitudes and values
lack of motivation major cause of failure of black children, most ch socialise into mainstream culture: instils ambition, competitiveness, and willingness to make sacrifices for lt gain, equips for educational success, some black socialised into
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subculture, believe in immediate gratification (living for today) fatalistic, devalues education, unequipped.
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family structure/parental support
failure to socialise adequately results in dysfunctional family structure.
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b families headed by single mother, children deprived: struggle financially(absence of male breadwinner). lack of role model of achievement, becomes cycle, fail at school + become inadequate parents, inadeqaute socialised, dysfunctional family
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Murray (new right)
high rate of LPH leads to lack of positive male role models, leads to minority underachievement
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Scrunton (new right)
low achievement result of failure to embrace mainstream british culture
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Pyrce (new right)
family structure contributes to black caribbean underachievement in uk, result of different impacts of colonialism, slavery CULTURALLY DEVESTATING for b, lost language/religion/family system so culture is less cohesive and less resistant to racism
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results in low self esteem+uderachieve, whereas asian kept all these under colonial rule and so culture is more resistant to racism, greater sense of self worth.
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b boys lack of fatherly nurturing/tough love, bb find it hard to overcome emotional/behavioural difficulties of adolescence, street gangs of fatherless boys offer 'perverse' loyalty and love.
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these give boys media inspired role models of anti school black masculinity, ultra-tough ghetto superstar, image reinforced by rap music and mtv
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Sewell c
bb subject to powerful anti educ peer group, most academically succ b felt peer pre biggest barrier, viewed as selling out to w estab, cultural differences in soc, b: nurtured by mtv need greater expectations to raise aspirations, asian work ethic
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criticisms: Gillborn
not peer pressure, institutional racism within system systematically produces failure of bb
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adult authority in a families similar to model school operates, respectful behaviour knock on effect, parents more likely supportive of schools behaviour policies
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why white wc underachieve: McCulloch
survey of 16000, ethnic minorities more likely to go to uni than w british, lower levels of achievement/aspirations from lack of parental support.
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Lupton: study of 4 ethnic wc schools
white wc groups reported poorer levels of behaviour+discipline compared to a, even though had fewer children on fsm, teachers blamed low levels of parental support+ wc parents negative view of educ, minority see as way up in society
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w wc culture brutal+young have to learn to withstand intimidation, school becomes place where POWER GAMES played out, disruption makes it hard to succeed.
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Criticisms: Driver
ignores positive effects of ethnicity, eg bl caribbean provides girls w independent role models, why black girls more successful then black b
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Lawrence (crit pyrce)
not low self esteem, racism
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criticism: Keddie
cultural dep is victim blaming, culturally different, fail because schools are ethnocentric biased for white culture
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criticism of compensatory education
attempt to impose dominant white culture, alternatives: multicultural education(values minority cultures and includes in curriculum) anti-racist educ (challenges prejudice+discrimination in school and wider soc)
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material deprivation
lack of physical necessities, substandard housing low income etc more likely to affect ethnic minorities
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half of ethnic minority children in low income housing compared to only quarter of white, twice as likely to be unemployed than w, 3x more likely to be homeless
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live in economically depressed areas (low wage rates/high unemploy), cultural factors eg purdah tradition muslim w cant work outside of home, lack of lang skills, foreign qualifications, asylum seekers not allowed to work, racial dis in labour market
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extent of material deprivation
materially derived indian and chinese still do better, 2011: 86% of chinese girls recieved fsm achieved 5 or more higher gcses only 65% of white girls NOT on fsm, MD and social class cannoot entirely override ethnicity
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lif childress did less well, but effects of li less for ethnic pupils than white.
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poverty is a product of racism, discrimination continuing and persistent feature of ethnic minorities in britian
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racial discrimination leads to social exclusion and worsens poverty. EM more likely forced into substandard accommodation.
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Wood et al
made fictitious applications to 1000 vacancies using different ethnic origin names, 1 in 16 EM applications offered interview compared to 1 in 9 white
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Gillborn and Mirza (challenge cultural dep)
study of local educ authority, black children highest achievers on entry to primary, by gcse worst result of any ethnic group
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internal factors
labelling/teacher racism, pupil identities, pupil responses/subcultures, institutional racsim
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Gillborn and Youdell: study
teachers quicker to discipline b for same behaviour, result of teachers RACIALISED EXPECTATIONS, expect more/interpret as threatening or challenge to authority, pupil responds negatively((conflict), pupil felt teacher underestimate ability+picked on
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conflict from teacher stereotypes not pupil behaviour, explains bb higher level of exclusions
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schools tend to see bb as threat, label negatively, eventually leads to exclusion, affects achievement, only 1 in 5 excluded achieve 5 gcses
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black pupils more likely to suffer from unrecorded unofficial exclusions/internal excl (sent out of class), more likley placed into PRUs(pupil referral units) excludes from mainstream curricilum
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teacher stereotypes of being badly behaved can put into lower sets, streaming based on negative stereotyping about ability/behaviour can result in sfp
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Wright (study)
multi ethnic primary, asian labelling, teachers ethnocentric views (british culture superior), interaction eg assume have poor grasp of english and exclude from discussion/use simplistic childish lang, felt isolated/disapproval of customs
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mispronounce name, not seen as threat but as PROBLEM to be ignored, felt marginalised especially girls, prevented from participating.
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teachers dominant discourse (perspective) defines EM pupils identities as lacking identity of ideal pupil. constructs IDEAL:w,mc,male,heteronormative (normal) sex, achieve 'right' way through natural ability, PATHOLOGISED: asian, deserving poor,
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asexual/oppressed sex, conformist culture bound overachiever, succeed through hard work, DEMONISED: b/w wc hypersexual, unintelligent peer led, culturally deprived underachiever. interviews w teachers+students show how black students demonised loud,
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excessively sexual, challenging, unaspirartional home cultures. Asian girls stereotyped as quiet, docile, passive
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when asian girls challenge stereotype by misbehaving, dealt with more severely
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Archer and Francis
'NEGATIVE POSITIVE STEREOTYPING', chinese simultaneously praised+viewed negatively, girls automatons, too repressed/passive, boys too effeminate+subordinate, success in wrong way hardworking passive conformism not natural, never legit be ideal pupil
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stereotype chinese families as tight/close, explains girls suppossed passivity, wrongly assume mc, even EM success will be seen as overachieving, proper achievement reserved for privileged, mc, white ideal pupil
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Fuller study
11 black girls/lnd comp/ high achievers where most bg low streamed, challenged anger about negative st and pursued educational success, didn't seek teachers approvals regard as racist, or still friends w bg from lower st, conformed only to schoolwork
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worked conscientiously but didn't appear, deliberate lack of concern about school routines, rely on own efforts+impartiality of exams, dealing w demand of school whilst remaining friends+avoiding ridicule of bb(anti school), maintain positive self
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image by rely on own not teachers stereotype, pupils can refuse to conform, negative labelling doesnt always lead to failure, no sfp
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Mac an Ghaill study
b+a alevel sixthformers, didnt accept negative label, response depended on ethnic group/gender/nature of former school, some from all girls felt greater academic commitment help to overcome negative labels, sfp not inevitable
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ambitious bg discouraged from being ambitious by racist teachers eg discourage aspiring prof careers, colour blind(believe equal but let racism go unchallenged), liberal chauvinists (b culturally dep low expect), overt racists(b inferior+actively dis
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girls avoided effects of negative attitudes, eg which staff to go to, do own work, don't take part in lesson, choose options to avoid racists, still high self esteem but disadv by restricting opportunities (unsuccessful)
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Sewell: study of bb reponses
1)REBELS: minority, excluded, reject goals+rules, express opposition through peer groups, anti authority black macho lad, believe own superiority based on idea that b masculinity equates sexual exp+virility, contemptuous of effeminate wb, dissmissive
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b conformist boys, 2)CONFORMISTS: largest, keen to succeed, accept goals, different ethnic group friends, not subcult, avoid being stereotyped 3)RETREATIST: minority,isolated individ, disconnected from school and b subcult, dispised by rebels,
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4)INNOVATORS: pro educ anti school, value success not teachers attitudes, conform for schoolwork, maintain cred w rebels as distance from conformists. small minority macho lads, negative attitudes response to racism, external also contribute.
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not only product of teachers individual preferences, whole operation of education system eg a to c lead to large no of wc/black in lower streams/exams, assuming automatically sfp
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Troyna and Williams
must look at individual racism and institutional racism (built into way institutions operate) routinely and unconsciously discriminate
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critical race theory
racism ingrained feature of society, intentional individual actions and institutional racism
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Roithmayr (crt)
IR is locked in inequality, scale of historical racism so large no need for conscious intent, inequality becomes SELF PERPETUATING sustains self
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applied locked in, sees inequality as so deeply rooted it is practically INEVITABLE. Marketisation gives school more scope for selection, allows neg st to influence admission decisions.
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support: Moore and Davenport study
selection leads to ethnic segregation, minority fail to get into better secondary bc discrim, application process favoured white (screen out lang difficulties/difficult for non native), leads to ethnically stratified education system
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Commission for Racial Equality
biases in Britain, racism in school admission procedures means EM children more likely to end up in unpopular schools, primary reports stereo, racist bias in interviews, lack of information/forms in minority languages, EM parents unaware of system
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Troyna and Williams
ethnocentric lang/lit, meagre provision for teaching asian lang compared w european
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national cirriculum is specifically British that largely ignores non european languages/lit/music
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N curriculum ignores ethnic diversity+ promotes 'little englandism' eg history attempts to recreate mythical age of empires+past glories and ignores b+a history
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ethnocentric c produces underac: eg british history presents br bringing civilisation to primitive colonies, image of black as inferior undermines ch self esteem.
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black children do not suffer from low self esteem.
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Gillborn: assessment
assessment game rigged to validate dominant cultures superiority, if b children succeed the rules will be changed eg replacement of baseline assessments for foundation stage profile(FSP) overnight b children gone from 20% above average to ranked
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lower than w across all measured areas (2003) based on teacher judgements and done at start of school not end of reception, increase risk of stereotyping affecting results
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Sanders and Horn: study of gcse
when tasked assessments counted for more than written exams, the gap between scores of ethnic groups widened.
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OS show w are over twice as likely than bcaribbean to be identified as gifted and talented and 5x more likely than bafricans, the gifted and talented programme doesn't benefit em inner city pupils
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Tikly et al
in 30 schools in 'aiming high' initiative to raise bcaribbean achievement, b still more likely entered into lower tiers than w at gcse, bc b in lower sets and so can only gain c at best
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Strand: data analysis of LSYPE
shows w-b achievement gap in maths and science since age 14, b systematically under represented in entry to higher tier tests, reflects teachers expectations (sfp)
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gilborn: new iqism
access to such opportunities rely on teachers assessments, work against b as lower ranked groups by potential, disciplinary concerns, perception of attitude- racialised excpectations. teachers+policymakers make false assumptions about potential, see
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as fixed quality to be measured, secondary increasingly using old style iq test to allocate steams, aren't genuine(like driving test), institutionally racist, em routinely disadvantaged
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criticisms: sewell
racism not gone but still not powerful enough to prevent individuals from succeeding, need to focus on external eg anti school attitudes/role of father/peer group
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Gillborn responses to overachieving model minorities
image of indian+chinese as model performs ideological function of concealing racism: seems meritocratic, justifies other m failure (unaspirational home culture/unwilling), ignores model suffer racism too chinese+bc report similar levels of harrasment
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need to look at how ethnicity interacts w age and gender, rarely consider black children class
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Connolly: study 5+6 yr olds
multi ethnic inner city primary, teachers construct masculinity based on ethnicity eg black disruptive underachievers, control punishment and channel energy into sport (respond non academic football), asians passive conformist academic, misbehaving
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immature not threat, feminine vulnerable need protection from bulling (how other assert masculinity). notes interaction effect: c+g interact differently depending on ethnic group, eg bigger gap in white mc+ wc than black mc+wc
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external explanations


cultural deprivation, material deprivation, racism in wider society

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cultural deprivation


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Bereiter and Engelmann


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speaking english at home


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