Category Archives: education

Sociological perspectives on the role and functions of education in society; the significance of in-school processes such as teacher labelling and subcultures for pupil identities; explanations for differences in educational achievement by social class, gender and ethnicity; the impact of education policies of marketization, selection and privatisation, and the globalization of education

Learning as a Product Versus Learning as Process

Many of the theories of learning that were developed during the first decades of the twentieth century tended to conceptualize learning as an end product or outcome – most often as a distinct change in behavior. Students and educators who … Continue reading

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Should girls be allowed to wear trousers in school?

Most UK schools have introduced trousers for girls into their uniform codes in the last twenty years, but some continue to ban them and will send home any girl who turns up wearing trousers, at least according to Trousers for All, which … Continue reading

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The Hidden Curriculum and School Ethos

The Hidden Curriculum refers to the unwritten rules, values and normative patterns of behavior which students are expected to conform to and learn while in school. Examples of things taught through the ‘hidden curriculum include: respecting authority respect for other … Continue reading

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pupil subcultures

Pupil subcultures are groups of students who share some values, norms and behaviour, which give them a sense of identify, and provide them with status through peer-group affirmation. Pupil subcultures take a variety of forms, ranging from pro-school to anti-school … Continue reading

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Problems with the increasing involvement of technology companies in education

There are four main problems of the increasing role of large technology companies in education, all of which stem from the incompatibility of the values of Silicon Valley Digital Capitalism and Public Education: The algorithmic approach to education cannot take … Continue reading

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Why are Oxford and Cambridge Still Bastions of Privilege?

A recent freedom of information request from David Lammy MP led to him commenting that Oxford and Cambridge operate a form of ‘social apartheid‘. Two of the most stark statistics are below: More than 80% of offers go to the … Continue reading

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Teacher Labelling and the self-fulfilling prophecy #class notes

The labels which teachers give to pupils can influence the construction and development of students’ identities, or self-concepts: how they see and define themselves and how they interact with others. This in turn can affect their attitudes towards school, their … Continue reading

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Coalition Education Policies #Revision Notes

Neoliberal ideas were much stronger in the Coalition government’s education policies—in a context of public sector cuts, they focused mainly on the further marketization of education, scrapping many of New Labour’s policies to tackle inequality of opportunity  Funding cuts to … Continue reading

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Technology Companies and the Digital Privatisation of Public Education

Education has long been influenced by private companies, but the rise of digital education has expanded the role of private technology companies, in public education enormously. Such companies range from the big global technology companies such as Microsoft and Facebook … Continue reading

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Coalition Education Policy (2010-2015)

In May 2010 the Conservative-Liberal Democratic Coalition government came to power. The Conservatives were the more dominant party and their views were correspondingly more strongly represented in educational policy. An ideological commitment to cutting public spending framed Coalition policy more … Continue reading

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