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What does differential educational achievement refer to?

Refers to differences in the level of educational qualifications achieved by social groups.


What evidence shows inequalities in educational achievement by social class?

Youth Lifestyles Survey (2010) found that:

- 77% of high social-class students achieved A-Levels, but only 38% of the lowest social-class did.


What are the 2 factors used to explain class differences?

1). Internal =

Factors within school, such as; interactions between teachers and pupils, and, inequalities between schools.

2). External =

Factors outside of school, such as; influences of home and background and wider society.


What are the external factors that affect educational achievement?

1. Material deprivation.

2. Cultural deprivation.

3. Cultural capital.


What are some examples of material/cultural deprivation?

1. Material =

Includes housing, diet and income.

2. Cultural =

Includes class differences in norms and values acquired through socialisation, attitudes to education and speech codes.


Is material/cultural deprivation a theory or actual social facts?

A theory = they are trying to explain the social facts.


What is material deprivation?

The lack of necessities that can be bought or owned.


What percentage of failing schools are in deprived areas?

Nearly 90%.


What evidence is there to suggest that poverty is closely related to educational underachievement?

Exclusion and truancy are more likely for poorer children --> excluded children are less likely to return and 1/3 of all persistent truants leave school with no qualifications.


What are the 5 material factors that can affect pupils' achievement?

1). Nutrition/diet.
2). Emotional/behavioural problems.
3). The 'cost of free schooling'.
4). Stigma and part-time jobs.
5). University fees = putting w/c off going.


Who said poor nutrition can affect pupils' achievement?

HOWARD = Young deprived children have lower intakes of energy, vitamins, and minerals --> health is affected; weakening their immune system and lowering energy levels.

- Leads to more absences due to illness.
- Difficult to concentrate in class.


Who said behavioural issues can affect pupils' achievement?

WILKINSON = Amongst 10 year olds, the lower the social class, the higher the rates of hyperactivity, anxiety and conduct disorders.

- All have a negative impact of the child's education.


Who said a lack of financial support can affect pupils' achievement?

BULL (cost of free schooling) = Children from poorer families go without equipment and experiences that would enhance educational achievement.

- This can impair their performance, compared with someone whom has these necessities.


Who said stigmatisation affects materially deprived children?

FLAHERTY = Fear of stigma can explain why 20% of children eligible for free-school meals don't take up their entitlement.


Who said taking on part-time jobs can affect pupils' achievement?

RIDGE = Lack of funds leads to children taking on part-time jobs, such as; babysitting, cleaning and paper rounds. This often has a negative impact on schoolwork.


Who said that a fear of university debt can affect pupils' achievement?

CALLENDER + JACKSON = w/c students are more debt averse (saw more costs than benefits in going to uni), which means they are less likely to go.

- When at uni they receive less financial support from their families.


What is cultural deprivation?

The lack of dominant norms, values, attitudes and skills acquired at a young age through primary socialisation.


What are the 3 cultural factors affecting pupils' achievement?

1). Language = speech codes.

2). Working-class subcultures = attitudes and beliefs.

3). Parents' education = parental involvement and primary socialisation.


Who discusses language as influential in achievement?

BERNSTEIN = he discusses 2 types of speech codes;

1. Restricted = limited vocab; context bound, short grammatically simple sentences.

2. Elaborated = more complex sentences that are able to convey more abstract ideas.


Who uses each speech code?

1. Restricted code =

- w/c --> they are likely to feel more excluded and be less successful.

2. Elaborated code =

- m/c pupils (use it without thinking about it), education; teachers, textbooks, exams, university interviews, etc.

- gives m/c pupils an advantage as they feel 'at home' in school.


Explain why textbooks use the elaborated code?

Because they don't know who their readers are, so they have to spell out their meanings very explicitly in a way that will be understood universally.


How is Bernstein criticised?

1. He describes w/c speech as inadequate, however, he says w/c fail because schools fail to teach them the elaborated code.

2. Labov =
In Harlem, he found little to no differences between the classes in terms of speech - says Bernstein's theory is an assumption of whole class.


Who says the attitudes and values of w/c subcultures act as a barrier to educational achievement?

SUGARMAN = w/c internalise the values of their subculture, resulting in underachievement.


What does Sugarman say the values of the w/c subcultures are?

1). Fatalism =

acceptance of the situation instead of trying to improve it.

2). Immediate gratification =

seeking pleasure now rather than making sacrifices for future rewards.

3). Present-time orientation =

seeking the present as more important than the future, so not having long-term goals.

4). Collectivism =

values on being part of a group rather than succeeding as an individual.


Why do these differences in values exist, according to Sugarman?

Stems from m/c and w/c jobs;

- m/c jobs = secure and offer continuous gain in prospects and qualifications.

- w/c jobs = less secure with few opportunities.

Children adopt these values and parents' careers influence their values.


How is Sugarman criticised?

1). Data is based off a questionnaire which contains its flaws.

2). May be realistic rather than fatalistic.

3). May defer gratification if they had the resources to.

4). May make plans for the future if the opportunities were available.


Who said parents' attitudes to education affects pupils' achievement?

JWB DOUGLAS = discusses parental involvement and primary socialisation as influential in a child's educational achievement.


How is parental involvement influential in educational achievement?

1. w/c parents placed less values on education, so;

less ambitious and encouraging for their children, took less interest and visited school less to discuss child's progress.

2. However, educated m/c parents valued education, so;

frequent visits, more likely to want their children to stay on after the leaving age, parental interest grows with age.


How is primary socialisation influential in educational achievement?

m/c children;

receive greater attention, encouragement to do their best. They are given an advantage in early years, ready for secondary education.


How is JWB Douglas criticised?

1. Parents evenings =

w/c parents may not attend them so frequently because of their demands of work (shift work) and stigma (or fear of it).

2. Lack of knowledge =

w/c parents may want to help bu lack knowledge themselves --> just because they don' help, it doesn't mean they don't want to.