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Education and Families


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achieved status
a social position attained largely through an individuals own efforts
affirmative action
positive efforts to recruit minority group members or women for jobs, promotions and educational opportunities
ageism
the negative stereotyping of people based on their age
ascribed status
a social position assigned to a person by society
alienation
the lack of power control fulfilment and satisfaction experienced by workers in a capitalist society
assimilationism
an approach to immigration policy that believes immigrants should adopt the language, values and customs of the host community
authority
power that has been institutionalised and is recognised by the people over whom it is exercised
birthrate
the number of live births per 1000 of the population in a given year
beanpole family
a family that is vertically extended but not horizontally extended
bourgeoisie
marxist term for the capitalist class
capitalism
an economic system where the means of production are largely in private hands
census
the counting of a population
civil partnership
gives same sex couples similar legal rights to married couples
class
term used by max weber to refer to a group of people who have a similar level of wealth and income
class system
a social ranking based primarily on economic position in which achieved characteristics can influence mobility
compensatory education
government education policies such as Operation Headstart USA which seek to tackle the problem of underachievement by providing extra support and funding to schools and families in deprived areas
comprehensive system
a non selective education system where all children attend the same type of secondary school introduced in 1965
conjugal roles
the roles played by husband and wife
closed system
a social system in which there is little or no possibility of individual mobility
code of ethics
the standards of acceptable behaviour developed by and for members of a profession
cohabitation
the practice of living together as a couple without getting married
communism
an economic system under which all property is communally owned and no social distinctions are made on the basis of people's ability to produce
content analysis
the systematic coding and objective recording of data
control group
subjects in an experiment who are not introduced to the iv by the researcher
control theory
a view of conformity and deviance that suggests that our connection to members of society leads us to systematically conform to society's norms
controlled variable
the variable that stays the same to test the effect of the independent variable
correlation
when two or more factors or variables vary together
correspondence principle
Bowles and Gintis' concept describing how organisation and control of schools is the same as as the workplace in capitalist society
counter culture
a subculture that deliberately opposes certain aspects of the larger culture
cultural capital
the knowledge,attitudes, values, tastes and abilities that the middle class transmit to their children. Bordieu argues that educational success is largely based on the possession of this
cultural deprivation
the theory that many working class and black children are inadequately socialised and therefore lack the right culture needed for educational success
culture
everything learned and shared by a society or group of people and transmitted from generation to generation through socialisation
death rate
the number of deaths per thousand of the population per year
deferred gratification
postponing immediate rewards or pleasures, generally with the aim of producing a greater reward at a later date and is seen as a characteristic of middle class culture
demographic transition
term used to describe the change from high birth rates and death rates to relatively low birth rates and death rates
demography
the study of population including birth, death, fertility and infant mortality rates, immigration and emigration, and age structure as well as the reasons for changes in these
dependency culture
when people assume that the state will support them, rather than relying on their own efforts and taking responsibility for their families
dependency ratio
the relationship between the size of the working population and the non-working or dependent population
deviance
is the failure to conform to social norms
differentiation
distinguishing or creating differences between individuals or groups, in education streaming is a form of this as it distinguishes between pupils based on ability
discrimination
the process of denying opportunities and equal rights to individuals and groups because of prejudice or other arbitrary reasons
domestic labour
work performed in the home, such as childcare, cooking and cleaning
dominant ideology
a set of cultural beliefs and practices that helps to maintain powerful social, economic and political interests
dual burden
when a person is responsible for two jobs, which is usually applied to women who are in paid work but also responsible for domestic labour
educational triage
the process whereby schools sort pupils into hopeless cases, those who will pass anyway and those with potential to pass and then concentrate on the last of these groups to boost the schools league table position
emotion work
the work involved in meeting the emotional needs of other people such as looking after a sick child
emmigration
movement out of a society
empathy
an understanding of how another person thinks, feels or acts, achieved by putting oneself in their place
empty shell marriage
a marriage in name only, where a couple continues to live under the same roof but as separate individuals
ethics
issues of right and wrong, moral principles or guidelines
ethnic group
a group that is set apart from others because of its national origin or distinctive cultural patterns
ethnocentric
seeing or judging things in a biased way from the viewpoint of one particular culture
experiment
an artificially created situation that allows the researcher to manipulate variables
exploitation
paying workers less than the value of their labour
expressive role
the caring, nurturing, homemaker role in the family
extended family
a family in which relatives such as grandparents, aunts or uncles live in the same home as parents and their children
family
a set of people related by blood, marriage or adoption who share the primary responsibility for reproduction and caring for members of society
family diversity
the idea that there is a range of different family types, rather than a single dominant one such as the nuclear family
families of choice
people who are not necessarily related by blood or marriage but who feel a sense of belonging together and who choose to define themselves as a family
family practices
the routine actions through which we create our sense of being a family member such as doing the shopping or diy
family structure
the composition of a group of people who live together as a family unit
feminism
a sociological perspective and political movement that focuses on womens oppression and the struggle to end it
fertility
the amount of reproduction among women of childbearing age
fertility rate
the total fertility rate is the average number of children women will have during their fertile years which is defined as age 15 to 45
fordism
a type of industrial production based on a detailed division of labour, using closely supervised, low skilled workers and assembly line technology to mass produce standardised goods, named after car manufacturing techniques introduced by Ford in the 20th century
formal norms
norms that generally have been written down and that specify strict rules for punishment of violators
formal social control
social control carried out by authorised agents, such as police officers, judges, school administrators and employers
functional fit
Parsons theory that with industrialisation the family becomes nuclear to meet the needs of industrial society for a geographically and socially mobile labour force
functionalism
a consensus perspective that sees society as being based on shared values and operating like an organism
gender domains
the tasks and activities that boys and girls see as the territory of their respective genders
gender roles
expectations regarding the proper behaviour, attitudes and activities of males and females
glass ceiling
an invisible barrier that blocks the promotion of a qualified individual in a working environment because of the individuals gender, race or ethnicity
globalisation
the idea that the world is becoming increasingly interconnected and barriers are disappearing
growth rate
the difference between births and deaths, plus the difference between immigrants and emigrants per 1000 population
habitus
a concept introduced by Bordieu which refers to the learned, taken for granted way of thinking, acting and being shared by a particular social class or group, which includes lifestyle preferences, consumption patterns and beliefs about what is realistic for members of the group to aim for
hawthorne effect
where the subject of a research study know they are being studied and begin to behave differently as a result undermining the studies validity
hidden curriculum
standards of behaviour that are deemed proper by society and are taught subtly in schools
hierarchy
an organisation or social structure based on a pyramid of senior and junior positions with top down control
homophobia
fear of and prejudice against homosexuality
household
a group of people who live together and share things such as meals,bills,facilities, chores or one person living alone
hypothesis
a speculative statement about the relationship between two or more variables
ideal pupil
an image held by teachers of the kind of pupil they prefer to teach such as bright, hardworking, cooperative, tend to see white middle class as closest to this
identity
the individuals sense of self which is influenced by socialisation and interactions with others
ideology
originally a marxist idea meaning a set of beliefs that serve the interest of a dominant social group by justifying their privileged position
immediate gratification
a preference for immediate pleasure or reward without regard for the longer term consequences, cultural deprivation theorists argue that working class children are socialised into this
immigration
movement into a society
impression management
involves manipulating the impression of ourselves that we give to others such as acting different when teaching a class compared to being in the staff room
individualisation thesis
argues that as a result of the weakening of the influence of traditional structures and norms individuals are now more freer to make their own life choices
individualism
the belief that the individual is more important than the group or community
industrial society
a society that depends on mechanisation to produce its economic goods and services
industrialisation
the shift from an agricultural economy to one based on factory production occurred in Britain in the late 18th to mid 19th century
infant mortality rate
the number of deaths of infants under one year of age per 1000 live births in a given year
informed consent
where those taking part in a study have agreed to do so and understand the purpose of the study, the uses of its findings as well as possible effects
institutional discrimination
the denial of opportunities and equal rights to individuals and groups that results from the normal operations of a society
institutional racism
discrimination that is built into the everyday workings of institutions such as schools and colleges, the discrimination can be unconscious rather than deliberate but is deeply ingrained
instrumental role
the breadwinner or provider role in the family, functionalists see this as the mans role
interactionist perspective
a sociological approach that generalises about fundamental or everyday forms of social interaction
intergenerational mobility
changes in the social position of children relative to their parents
interactionism
a sociological perspective that focuses on small scale (micro level) interactions between individuals and groups rather than on the large scale workings of society
interpretivism
a term covering a range of perspectives including interactionism
interview
a telephone or face to face questioning of a respondent to obtain desired information
interview schedule
the list of questions to be asked in an interview
intragenerational mobility
changes in a persons social position within his or her adult life
kinship
the state of being related to others
labelling
the process of attaching a definition or meaning to an individual or group
labelling theory
an approach to deviance that attempts to explain why certain people are viewed as deviants while others engaging in the same behaviour are not
law
government social control
legitimation
justifying something by making it seem fair and natural which is the main function of ideology
life course analysis
an approach focusing on the meanings family members give to life events and choices, such as deciding to leave home and get divorced
life expectancy
how long on average people who are born in a given year are expected to live
living apart together
couples who are in a significant relationship but are not married or cohabiting
longitudinal study
study of a sample of people in which information is collected at regular intervals over an extended period of time
macro level
theories such as functionalism and marxism that focus on a large scale on the social structure as a whole
marketisation
the policy of introducing market forces of supply and demand into areas run by the state such as education and the nhs
marxism
a conflict perspective based on the ideas of karl marx which sees society as divided into two opposing classes one of which exploits the labour of the other
material deprivation
poverty, a lack of basic necessities such as an adequate diet, housing, clothing or the money to buy these things
matriarchy
a society in which women dominate in family decision making
meritocracy
an educational or social system where everyone has an equal opportunity to succeed and where individuals rewards and status are achieved by their own efforts rather than ascribed by their gender, class or ethnic group
micro level
theories such as interactionism that focus on small scale face to face interaction, these theories see individuals constructing society through their actions
migration
involves the movement of people from place to place, can be internal within a given society, or transnational
mobility
movement, change of position, two types geographical and social
model minorities
a term used to describe minority ethnic groups, such as chinese and indian pupils who achieve above average results
modernisation
the far reaching process by which a society moves from traditional or less developed institutions to those characteristic of more developed societies
modernism
modernist perspective such as functionalism, marxism and postivism that believe society has a clear cut predictable structure and that it is possible to gain true and certain scientific knowledge of how society functions
monogamy
a form of marriage in which one woman and one man are married only to each other
moral panic
an overreaction to a perceived problem where a group is labelled as a threat to societies values, the media play an important part by exaggerating the scale of the problem and channelling demands that something be done about it
mortality rate
the incidence of a death in a given population
multicultural
a society or institution that recognises and gives value to different cultures and or ethnic groups, for example multi cultural education teaches children about the cultures of other groups and not just the dominant
myth of meritocracy
functionalists argue that the education system is meritocratic but bowles and gintis claim it is an ideology that legitimises inequality by falsely claiming that everyone has equal opportunity
natural change
the difference between the number of births and the number of deaths in a population resulting in either a natural increase or a natural decrease
neo liberalism
the theory that competition, choice and privatisation are the most efficient way to run an economy free from state regulation
net migration
the difference between the number of immigrants entering a country and the number of emigrants leaving it
new right
a conservative political perspective whose supporters believe in self reliance and individual choice rather than dependence on the state
new vocationalism
the idea that education should be primarily about meeting the needs of the economy, especially by equipping young people with the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values needed to prepare them for work
non participant observation
a primary research method where the observer records events without taking part in them
norms
established standards of behaviour maintained by a society
nuclear family
a married couple and their unmarried children living together
objectivity
the absence of bias or preconceived ideas, it implies that we can look at things as they really are without our opinions or values getting in the way
observation
a research technique in which an investigator collects information through direct participation in and or observation of a group, tribe or community
official statistics
quantitative data collected by the government they can either be gathered by registration or by official surveys
open ended questions
questions in a social survey that allow respondents to answer as they wish in their own words
open system
a social system in which the position of each individual is influenced by his or her achieved status
parentocracy
literally meaning rule by parents, the concept is associated with marketised education systems which are based on an ideology of parental choice of school, middle class parents may benefit more from this as they have more economic and cultural capital
participant observation
a primary research method in which the sociologist studies a group by taking a role within it and participating in its activities
patriarchy
is a system in which males dominate in every area of society
personal life perspective
a new perspective influenced by interactionist ideas and takes a bottom up approach unlike structural theories that take a top down approach
pilot study
a small scale trial run, usually of a social survey conducted before the main study
pluralism
mutual respect between the various groups in a society for one anothers cultures, which allows minorities to express their own cultures without experiencing prejudice
polarisation
a process that results in the creation of two opposite extremes
polyandry
a form of polygamy in which a woman can have several husbands at the same time
polygamy
a form of marriage in which an individual can have several husbands or wives simultaneously
polygyny
a form of polygamy in which a husband can have several wives at the same time
population
in a social survey the population is all the members of the group that the researcher is interested in
positivism
the belief that society is made up of social facts that can be studied scientifically to discover laws of cause and effect
post fordism
a type of industrial production, a highly skilled adaptable workforce that are combined with computerised technology allowing flexible specialisation
postindustrial society
a society whose economic system is primarily engaged in the processing and control of information
postmodern society
a technologically sophisticated society that is preoccupied with consumer goods and media images
power
the ability to exercise ones will over others
prejudice
a negative attitude toward an entire category of people such as a racial or ethnic minority
primary data
information collected first hand by sociologists themselves for their own research purposes
primary group
a small group characterised by intimate face to face association and cooperation
privatisation
the transfer of industries or services previously owned by the state to ownership by private businesses who run them to make a profit
proletariat
marxs term for the working class in a capitalist society
pure relationship
one which exists solely to meet each partners needs couples stay together for love, happiness or sexual attraction
qualitative data
information usually expressed in words about peoples thoughts, feelings, motivations, attitudes, values etc
qualitative research
research that relies on what is seen in the field or naturalistic settings more than on statistical data
quantitative data
information in numerical form such as percentages, tables and graphs
quantitative research
research that collects and reports data primarily in numerical form
questionnaire
a printed research instrument employed to obtain desired information from a respondent
racism
the belief that one race is supreme and all others are innately inferior
random sample
a sample for which every member of the entire population has the same chance of being selected
reconstituted family
a step family in which one or both partners has children from a previous relationship
reference group
any group that individuals use as a standard in evaluating themselves and their own behaviour
reliability
the extent to which a measure provides consistent results
representative
if a sample is representative it will be typical of the population so findings can be applied to the whole population which is good when it is not possible to study a whole population
representative sample
a selection from a larger population that is statistically found to be typical of that population
reproduction
the recreation or continuation of something into future generations
research design
a detailed plan or method for obtaining data scientifically
reserve army of labour
a marxist concept that describing groups who can be brought into the workforce when there is a labour shortage as the capitalist economy expands during a boom and discarded when it contracts (women in world wars)
response rate
the proportion of those people included in a social survey who actually reply or respond to the questions asked
role
how someone who occupies a particular status is expected to act
role conflict
difficulties that occur when incompatible expectations arise from two or more social positions held by the same person
sample
a smaller group selected from the larger survey population to take part in a study
sampling
the process of selecting a sample
sampling frame
the list of people from which a sample for a social survey is selected
sanctions
penalties and rewards for conduct concerning a social norm
secondary analysis
a variety of research techniques that make use of publicly accessible information and data
secondary data
information collected by other people or organisations which sociologists often use as it is free or cheap, covers large numbers and is readily available
secularisation
the process through which religions influence on other social institutions decreases
selection
in education the process of choosing and allocating pupils to a particular school class, stream etc
self fulfilling prophecy
the tendency of people to respond to and act to the basis of stereotypes, leading to validation of false definitions
separatism
a radical feminist idea that women should live independently of men as the only way to free themselves from the patriarchal oppression of the heterosexual family
serial monogamy
a form of marriage in which a person can have several spouses in his or her lifetime but only one spouse at a time
sexism
the ideology that one sex is superior to the other
single parent families
families in which there is only one parent present to care for children
social control
the techniques and strategies for preventing deviant human behaviour in any society
social class
social groupings or hierarchy based on differences in wealth, income or occupation
social inequality
a condition in which members of a society have different amounts of wealth, prestige or power
socialism
an economic system under which the means of production and distribution are collectively owned
socialisation
the process whereby people learn the attitudes, values and actions appropriate for individuals as members of a particular culture
social action theories
see individuals as having free will and choice and the power to create society through their actions and interactions rather than being shaped by society
social construction
when something is created by social processes rather than simply occurring naturally
social mobility
movements of individuals or groups up or down the social hierarchy from one social class to another
social movements
organised collective activities to bring about or resist fundamental change in an existing group or society
social policy
the actions, plans and programmes of government bodies and agencies that aim to deal with a problem or achieve a goal, policies are often based on laws that provide the framework within which these agencies operate
social role
a set of expectations of people who occupy a given social position or status
social science
the study of various aspects of human society
social stratification
a system where society ranks categories of people in a hierarchy
social survey
any research method that involves systematically collecting information from a group of people
society
a fairly large number of people who live in the same territory, are relatively independent of people outside it and participate in a common culture
sociology
the systematic study of social behaviour and human groups
speech codes
patterns or ways of using language, Bernstein argued working class use restricted code whereas middle class use elaborated code
stabilisation of adult personalities
one of the two functions of the nuclear family according to Parsons as it is a place where adults can release their tensions
status
a term used by sociologists to refer to any of the full range of socially defined positions within a large group or society
stereotypes
unreliable generalisations about all members of a group that do not recognise individual differences within the group
stigma
a label used to devalue members of deviant social groups
stratification
a structured ranking of entire groups of people that perpetuates unequal economic rewards and power in a society
streaming
where children are separated into different ability groups or classes and then each ability group is taught separately from the rest for all subjects
structural theories
see individuals as entirely shaped by the way society is structured or organised
subculture
a segment of society that shares a distinctive pattern of mores, folkways and values that differs from the patterns of larger society
subjectivity
a bias, lack of objectivity where the individuals own viewpoint influences their perception or judgement
survey
a study, generally in the form of interviews or questionnaires, that provides sociologists and other researchers with information concerning how people think and act
symbolic capital
a concept introduced by Bourdieu which refers to the status, recognition and sense of worth we are able to obtain from others especially those of a similar class position to us
symbolic violence
a concept introduced by Bourdieu, which refers to the harm done by denying someone symbolic capital , which could be defining their culture as worthless
symmetrical family
a nuclear family with more equal and joint conjugal roles in which husbands participate in domestic labour as well as being breadwinners and wives going out to work as well as being homemakers
teacher expectancy effect
the impact that a teachers expectations about a students performance may have have on the students actual achievements
theory
in sociology, a set of statements that seek to explain problems, actions or behaviour
triangulation
the use of two or more different methods or sources of data so that they complement each other, the strengths of one countering the weaknesses of the other and vice versa
tripartite system
the system of secondary education created by the 1944 education act, based on three types of school, those with academic ability went to grammar schools and most working class children went to secondary modern schools
validity
the degree to which a scale or measure truly reflects the phenomenon under study
values
collective conceptions of what is considered good, desirable and proper or bad, undesirable and improper in a culture
value consensus
agreement among societies members about what values are important, so a shared culture
variable
a measurable trait or characteristic that is subject to change under different conditions
vocational
connected to a career, vocational education and training transmits knowledge skills and attitudes needed to pursue particular careers
underclass
those at the lowest level of the class structure, who are a level below working class with a separate, deviant subculture and lifestyle including a high rate of lone parent families, male unemployment and criminality
unit of consumption
the modern family today who no longer work together but consume together as a single unit or group the income the members earn
unit of production
where families would work together as economic producers which was more common in preindustrial society
urbanisation
the process of change from a rural society where the majority of the population lives in the countryside to an urban society where most people live in towns and cities, this often occurs with industrialisation
welfare state
where the government or state takes responsibility for peoples well being especially their basic minimum needs
Level 3