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Flashcards in theory Deck (23)
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Blau and Duncan (1978)

human capital is necessary for modern capitalist states to prosper
a meritocratic education system enables each person to be allocated to the best job suited to their abilities
we make effective use of talents to maximise profits


Davis and Moore (1945)

role allocation - education helps to match individuals to the job they are best suited


organic analogy

institutions act as organs working together/ relying on each other


macro theory

belief that institutions directly impact individuals



institutions have a positive affect on society


Durkheim function of education

main function of education = solidarity and skills
creating social solidarity
teaching specialist skills


functionalist evaluation

marxists have a problem with the idea that 'norms' and 'values' are being promoted in schools to create social solidarity
teaches us to conform - become robotic members of society



education acts as a bridge between home life and work life



advertising/ selling the 'product' (school) to a particular market (parents)
through things like
open days
league tables (progress 8)
photos and website
specialist schools


cream skimming and silt shifting

schools pick the students they believe will achieve the highest grades (generally MC white) and discard the others


evaluation of marketisation

A-C economy
educational triage - setting and streaming
cream skimming and silt shifting


role of the state - Althusser

the state contains elements which serve to keep the bourgeoisie in power
the ISA and the RSA


RSA repressive state apparatus

maintain the rule of the bourgeoisie by force of threat
physical force may be used to repress the WC
e.g police, army


ISA ideological state apparatus

maintain the rule of the bourgeoisie by controlling peoples ideas, values and beliefs
e.g the church


marxist functions of education

reproducing class inequality
legitimising class inequality


reproducing class inequality

passes on that capitalism is right
continues the underachievement of the WC
results in streaming and labelling


legitimising class inequalities

justifies class inequality by blaming failure on students ability (meritocracy) and emphasises fairness at school


Bowles and Gintis case study

schools try to create robotic obedient students preparing them to be submissive compliant workers
negative from marxist viewpoint everyones taught the same norms and values - no one disagrees with the system and people won't challenge capitalism


Bowles and Gintis = correspondence principle

correspondence principle takes place through 'the hidden curriculum' (all the 'lessons' that are learnt in school without them being directly taught - rules and norms you learn)
AO3 - functionalists with these morals society would crumble


Bowles and Gintis

argue that meritocracy doesn't exist because the education system prepares you for work and creates failure to fill the lower skilled jobs


functionalist evaluation

interactionalists argue this theory on the role of education is deterministic and ignores free will


the new right perspective

they favour the marketisation of education because the state cannot meet peoples needs and that people are best left alone to meet their own needs in the free market

the state education system takes a 'one size fits all' approach imposing uniformity disregarding local needs


Chub and Moe

each family should have a voucher to spend on buying education at the school of their choice
this would make schools compete and would improve quality