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Sociology 1101--Ch 13

by: Isabella Bowling

Sociology 1101--Ch 13 Socio 1101 (Lopez, Intro to sociology)

Isabella Bowling
GPA 3.793
Introduction to Sociology
Steven Lopez

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About this Document

This includes information from "You May Ask Yourself" in Chapter 13 as well as Dr. Lopez's lecture on the educational system from 11/17. Also includes his lecture on "Bureaucracy" given on 11/19.
Introduction to Sociology
Steven Lopez
Class Notes
sociology, Introduction to Sociology
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This 12 page Class Notes was uploaded by Isabella Bowling on Sunday November 22, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to Socio 1101 (Lopez, Intro to sociology) at Ohio State University taught by Steven Lopez in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 62 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Sociology in Sociology at Ohio State University.


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Date Created: 11/22/15
Sociology Ch 13 EDUCATION Although school is supposed to be the institution in society that provides equal opportunity it ends up sorting and stratifying students by the backgrounds from which they come Patrick Bernard EhidonyeJohnson a man who was born in Liberia moved to Nigeria with his family and 20 siblings but currently goes to school online while working jobs and supporting his family and saving up for his education and one of his sister s Could obtain education because he spoke English and had high grades in high school Takes online classes MOOCs and represents who the online education should be reaching but he s rare because of his access to internet computers etc that are needed for the classes Functions of Schooling the process through which academic social and cultural ideas and tooks both general and specific are developed Unfortunately 14 of US age 16 is functionally illiterate can t write or read well enough to be a functioning member in society and 22 age 16 is innumerate not enough math to function well Socialization schools pass down the beliefs values and attitudes that are important to society Almost all students go through more or less the same socialization process because public school is free and mandatory up to highschool the nonacademic and less overt socialization functions of schooling American Indians were forced to assimilate by sending them to boarding schools and teaching them the quotsuperiority of white ways Power and Morality 1959 Argues that many schools sort students through testing and then teach them different skills and socialize them differently in the ways deemed appropriate for their futures eg gifted programs or vocational school However others argue that school stratify the students not by merit but by class disproportionately sending the lowerclass students more often into vocational classes Why Public Education Critical for many reasons Upward mobility in the US education should be the ticket out of poverty right Democracy depends on an educated informed citizenry 21st century technology requires highlyeducated workforces in order to compete globally Education needs to be a part of solving civilization issues Does School Matter Not all schools are created equal 9 affects educational outcomes of the students commissioned by the government 10 years after Brown v Board of Education to see if the reason the achievement gaps between black and white schools was remained high was measurable eg textbook availability class size Resources between schools did NOT matter The contributing factors of educational achievement were family background and the peers with whom students attended school Composition of the school has significant effects Black students fared better in majoritywhite schools and lowerincome children did better in middleclass schools Even though Coleman s results were replicated other new improved studies did show some links between students achievement outcomes and school characteristics schools with smaller classes significantly benefited in terms of fewer behavior problems and significantly higher achievement test scores Longlasting effects 9 more likely to graduate more likely to take ACT or SAT etc Catholic schools are best at preparing academically especially for minority and lowincome students Private schools have higher attendance rates more homework completion higher academic program enrollment etc which could explain the achievement differences Also Catholic schools stem from large amounts of social capital the information knowledge of people and connections that help individuals enter gain power in or otherwise leverage social networks These relationships are conductive to learning Are the schools failing in the US Conventional wisdom America is falling behind other industrialized countries OECD Pisa 2012 results US tied for 17th in reading literacy among 15 yolds Tied for 27th in mathematics literacy among 15 yolds 20th in science literacy among 15 yolds But what is the nature of the problem public schools are subject to too much gov control and bureaucracy They are ineffective because they are a monopoly lack incentives to do better Also bad teachers are protected by powerful unions These lead to failing schools because standards are too low families especially low income are locked into failing schools where no one cares amp opportunities are limited Answers to the dominant view Accountabiity rigorous national standards with rigorous testing to meet global standards Adding merit pay and funding incentives 9 successful teachers and schools should be rewarded and failing teachers and schools held accountable Choice students should be able to leave failing schools for better ones Charter school movement anyone who wants to can manage a school that receives government funds New kinds of markets in education 9 schools of all kinds should compete for resources and students Dominant view expresses a consensus that includes both political parties education reform philanthropies forprofit education corporations and entrepreneurs and numerous education experts As a result the education landscape is changing rapidly Inside Schools The differences among students WITHIN schools is gt differences among students BETWEEN schools a way of dividing students into different classes by ability or future plans eg different preparation types for the same class academic vocational or general Intended to create a better learning environment Predicts graduation rates amp whether students attend college or not Gamoran amp Mare 1989 Vocationa track students more likely to be employed in skilled jobs Arum amp Shavit 1995 Parents however may often step in and have students places in academic tracks despite mediocre test scores9 overrepresentation of higherclass whites over minorities amp lowincome studied nonCatholic students at Catholic schools Found these students were particularly ambitious amp their parents goals for them may play a large role in kid s educational success So is tracking really important Some students may suffer hugely because of the stark differences in quality of teaching and content of materials between tracks 1985 interviewed students and those in high tracks were able to identify valuable lessons learned from class while lower track students admitted to learning almost nothing useful or helpful Teachers students can experience extremely differed types of instructions that vary in their quality Teachers have a social intimacy with students because of the huge amount of time spent with them 1968 found that teacher s expectations had significant impacts on student achievements a selffulfilling prophecy and in this case teachers expect more from the student9the student does better Works vice versa Best practices the extensively researchsupported teaching methods Peers who attends class sets a tone for classroom environment More behavioral problems in one student 9 more behavioral problems with other students and all reduce test scores IRaising average ability of the classroom will raise the individual student s ability Vice versa NCLB of 2002 Was supposed to be a reform map for the school system by 2014 on basis of accountability and choice Major provisions Mandatory annual testing of reading and math grades 38 and once in high school All states required to ensure 100 of students reach proficiency by 201314 quotProficiencyquot as defined by each state NOT NATIONALIZED Every school required to make quotadequate yearly progress AYP toward the goal quotAYPquot also as defined by each state Schools failing to make APY designated quotschools in need of improvement and received penalties Schools reaching goals 9 rewards ie money The appeal of NCLB ncreasing standards backtobasics readingwriting is always popular reform themes after trying to quotenrichquot schools with extracurricular eg arts and sports Expertise in education not required of the reformers 9 the schools will improve in response to incentives ie rewardspunishments The 25 of nations 100000 schools failed to make AYP These schools 9 concentrated in highpoverty districts School choice lt5 of eligible students are transferring to successful schools The voucher that families save on public schools can t compete with wealthy families in terms of sending students to private schools Inequalities reproduced not undone Tutoring 80 of eligible students turned it down Kids and families do NOT want a longer school day even if they really need the extra help School restructuring mediocre results Some large school districts brought in directors but most schools still didn t improve Harsh sanctions for failing to improve 9 cheating scandals nationwide Goal of 100 proficiency by 201314 not met Obama issued waivers to 32 states in 2012 As of 2015 42 states have waivers allowing them to not comply with the NCLB The Charter School Movement Argues that the NCLB failures are largely due to the fact that most kids are still stuck in bureaucratic public schools where bad teachers are protected by strong unions The solution is eliminating public schools 9 replacing with charter schools Recent film Waitingfor Superman which articulates the viewpoint Replace unionized teachers with nonunionized teachers There are 5000 charter schools currently nationwide Research on charter school performance CREDO study one of many with similar findings 17 of charter schools have better results test scores 46 of charter schools have no difference in results 39 of charter schools have worse results All in comparison to matching traditional public schools most charter schools did NOT do any better than public schools ssues The results vary WIDELY on impact of charter schools Charter schools are less regulated have more reign They don t usually report things they re supposed to bc not government controlled Some charter schools fail and have to close half way through the year leaving students wo educational opportunities Some kick students out andor are more selective on admittance So are they say they are doing better but are they better because they segregate and collect only the best students that do better on the testing Charter school movement proponents need to study their social stratification Charter school movement is one of the educational fads promising to cure society s ills but it has the relationship between education and poverty exactly backwards IEducation CANNOT eradicate poverty IPoverty CAN prevent people from taking advantage of education as an upward mobility strategy It rarely happens Higher Education In 1910 only 3 of US age 25 had college degrees in 2012 jumped to 301 Perspectives Beieve the rise of education boils down to simple supply and demand Jobs are more technical and require more educated workforce therefore people go to school NOT wellbacked by data because industrialization can t explain extreme trends in education In fact most American s have too much education for the occupations they end up in Perspectives ncrease in education is a reflection of views on it Education badge of elite status As education expands those who want to be elite have to obtain more and more education to set themselves apart from others an overemphasis on credentials eg college degrees for signaling social status or qualifications for a job Skils in jobs aren t changing but the requirements are being raised by employers in order to screen out people 9 people overqualified for theirjobs Students stratified within the schooling system as they try to attend better schools get on higher tracks etc just to stand out against others The SAT Meritocracy and the Big Test In 2006 College Board announced it had underestimated the scores of over 4000 tests taken in October 2005 Colleges were scrambling to reassess but many students had already made decisions based on their incorrect scores They re supposed to predict a student s potential for college success better than highschool GPA and class rank because these two can vary among students from different schools But other studies show it s not as significant of a predictor Research shows that SAT accurately predicts freshman year GPA class rank likelihood of graduation and changes of obtaining an advanced degree ISAT is biased toward certain groups who can afford to learn the information that s being tested eg practice classes despite whether it s actually important knowledge Affirmative Action Myths and Reality refers to a set of policies that grant preferential treatment to particular subgroups wn the population typically women amp historically disadvantaged racial minorities Myth Levels the playing field for historically underrepresented groups Reality schools give preference based on many characteristics not just race or ethnicity such as being a legacy an athlete where you grew up leadership skills or unusual life circumstances Often these preferences are equal or higher than those given to black or Hispanic students Myth affirmative action takes away from deserving white students Reality Abolishing affirmative action would only improve white s chances of acceptance by 05 Asian students would benefit the most because they re not considered as an underrepresented minority Myth African Americans and Hispanics are underprepared and will flounder at elite schools Reality there are mixed results lower GPAs but higher graduation rates Eiminating affirmative action would decrease black and Hispanic acceptance rates by 1223 nteigence or IQ IQ tests only measure one kind of intelligence do not include thinking creatively or understanding complicated scientific concepts IQ tests are also criticized for having bias that is commonly taught among white middleclass IQ tests do NOT measure innate intelligence but the intelligence developed after interacting with the environment Inequalities in Schooling There are many background characteristics over which students cannot control that affect educational outcomes or SES an individual s position in a stratified social order Composed of any combination of parental educational attainment parental occupational status family income and family wealth Higher on any 9 generally better educational opportunities More money afford tutoring prep courses consultants move to better areas go to better schools etc More parental education more help in classes from the parents Higher SES more likely to see teachers as equals or inferiors and gain advantages for their students Lower SES more likely to not feel as empowered over the teacherschool the symbolic and interactional resources that people use to their advantage in various situations Coined by Pierre Bourdieu Three types Race 1 skills that rest in our body eg learning to play piano 2 objects that require a significant investment in time and money to acquire eg the piano itself 3 skills become legitimized through a formal system eg being accepted into an elite school because of your pianoplaying abilities What is considered useful in one timeplace may not be in another Affects the educational system eg lowerSES homes use direct short speech while middle and upperSES homes tend to question more and use larger phrases 9 short speech used to be considered respectful but now longer speech is preferred by Socratic teaching methods in schools Schools also tend to reward middleclass knowledge obtained outside school Often having more social networks and cultural capital from families allows white students to succeed Does the responsibility of the educational gap lie on the shoulders of African American families or are larger societal forces more important contributors Blacks are lower on all of the SES indicators on average 30 live below the poverty line compared to only 10 of whites 40 of black children under 18 live below the poverty line compared to only 17 of white children The typical black family has only 5 cents to every dollar of wealth of a typical white family Class Intersections When controlling for SES the blackwhite educational gap narrows significantly IUpperclass children are being exposed to educational opportunities that encourage learning and growth while lowerclass children tend to lose some educational ground during the summer because of lack of opportunity Alternate explanations for the gap besides class Blacks fear of being accused of quotacting white schoo and book learning is associate with white behavior so many blacks downplay their intellect and disengage from school Fordam and Ogbu Others Tyson Darity and Castellino found limited support for this The inversion of dominant values is prevalent among underprivileged youth regardless of race causing kids to act out and see achievement as negative MacLeod and Willis Blacks feel socially isolated in honors and advanced placement classes so they may not reach for those Good news if they are placed most stick with the rigorous track Stereotypes African Americans may have internalized the negative stereotypes which are resulting in the achievement educational gaps Almost like the Pygmalion Effect selffulfilling prophecy when members of a negatively stereotyped group are placed in a situation they fear they may confirm those stereotypes 1998 black and white stanford undergrads were randomly assigned to one of two groups Each were given verbal tests similar to the SAT Group one was told it was assessing intellectual ability group two was told it was a simple problemsolving task Blacks in quottestquot group scored significantly lower than blacks in the quotproblemsolving group and scored lower than all whites explains that when people are aware of the negative stereotypes they perform worse Gene Movement Contrary to masses of evidence many still believe in the idea that racial differences in intelligence are genetic n 1900s many biased IQ tests were given 9 claim whiter skin led to high innate intelligence Stigmatized minority groups in all countries even when they are of the same race have lower IQ scores and lower educationaloccupational outcomes eg Buraku in Japan The Bell Curve Thesis 1994 claimed that everything was genetic so blacks did worse educationally because it was because of genetic tendencies Others reviewed their techniques and found they used intelligence tests to show what they learned in school NOT measuring innate intelligence Ethnicity Hispanics suffer from the highest dropout rates and have lower SAT scores higher rate of repeating grades and suspensionexpulsion than white students They are also a target of negative stereotypes and targeted for explaining inequalities that stem from genetics Asians even though when they first arrived they suffered from huge amounts of discrimination and oppression they now consistently score higher on math have higher GPAs and higher college attendance rates than nonAsians How d they do it 1996 suggested that they have more social capital than other immigrants within their communities because of close ties and support for each other s parenting rules BoyGirl Achievement Gap 30 years ago girls lagged behind in educational outcomes but now girls are surpassing boys are less likely to repeat a grade or drop out They outperform on reading and writing attend college in higher numbers and more likely to graduate than boys More than half of all graduate degrees awarded are earned by women yet it still doesn t pay off in the workplace 9 women make 80 cents for every 1 a man makes with equal education more likely to engage in risky behaviors and experience serious problems at school They also make up larger proportion of those taking calculus and science AP tests and score higher than girls on these tests IGirls have started doing equally well across all SES at the same time boys from lowerSES started doing worse The crisis has limited effects on middle amp upperclass children The family at home Growing up with same parents at siblings will end up with similar educational outcomes hypothesis stating that parental resources are finite and that each additional child gets a smaller amount of them Especially true for kids born close together Resources include economic eg money and amount of interaction Only children do better educationally 9 have a monopoly on parental resources IMiddle children do the worst off particularly boys in families of three or more children Laterborn children better chance of getting parental financial support for college than older siblings 9 possibly because of improving parental financial status Biological take babies with smaller birth weight have lower educational outcomes than their heftier siblings Also low birth weight has been correlated with poor classroom behavior Research in the Sociology of Education The Charter School movement s diagnosis of the problem is simply wrong Teacher quality only accounts for 1015 of variability in student achievement gains but it is the most important factor IN the school INonschool factors account for 60 of variability in achievement IStudent SESfamily income is the single most important factor in school performance Kids who are poor hungry homeless or abused have more difficulty learning relative to kids who are not Why are we rewarding improvement and punishing failure of teachers when most of the factors aren t under teacher control Creating perverse incentives eg cheating and discouraging good teachers to go to bad districts because they re paychecks rely on the students test scores Counterproductive because we need good teachers to improve those districts Practice feedback proper training etc is what drives improvement NOT incentives The idea that schools of concentrated lowscoring students are designated as failing but why Schools with predominantly middleclass kids are prepared before school eg kindergarten preschool etc Continue learning over the summer Schools with predominantly lowerclass they learn at the same rate as the middleclass kids while in school they are just less prepared before school Additionally students regress during the summer because of stress environment etc IOutside process are making the gap bigger NOT the schools themselves Policy Vouchers The idea behind the voucher movement is that for schooling to be equal students should be able to choose where they want to go regardless of whether they can pay for it Proponents want government vouchers for students that can be redeemed at any school public or private Students take the dollar amount on the public school they would have spent and apply it to the tuition at another school Benefits students can choose better schools competition in schools will improve allaround standards etc ssues do the schools have the right to limit in number of students Would it make the school less effective Not all parents could or would choose to send their kids to other schools Currently voucher programs being tested around the US so far Although findings vary overall there is NO consistent benefit found and has made no difference to child achievement scores Revisiting the Education Problem Question So why are US Pisa test scores so mediocre against international competition Answer The US has some of the largest concentrations of impoverished schools INearly 25 of children in the US are poor The child poverty rate is HIGHER than the total poverty rate US has a HUGE range of schools that are either stellar or extremely impoverished Education isn t our problem CHILD POVERTY IS OUR PROBLEM Implications Since were not committed to ending or reducing child poverty it s reasonable to ask what schools can do to REDUCE the effects of poverty on achievement Poor students need more school resources than affluent students Current public school funding is opposite Students in wealthy districts enjoy MORE educational opportunities than counterparts in poor communities Bureaucracy and the Future of Civilization What is bureaucracy literally means quotrule by offices and involves a clearlydefined hierarchy of offices whose activities are bound by formal ie written rules Bureaucracy is the modern organizational form 9 government businesses and nonprofits Alternatives to bureaucracy involve various forms of personal authority and aren t capable of large scale administration of anything lack paper trails formal rules etc Even though bureaucracy appears inefficient eg red tape etc it is soooo amazingly efficient compared to the other alternates according to Weber Challenges of 21St Century Energy and Climate change Other resource shortages esp water Economic instability inequality and global poverty War over resources religious and ethnic differencesissues M All of these problems are related to bureaucracy solving social and technical problems requires effective organization Implementing solutions to the problems also requires effective organization Failed bureaucracy can lead to catastrophe prevented WW3 1983 His job was to watch the early warning systems of the Soviet Union He thought he detected a handful of missiles coming but decided not to react to prevent starting WW3 he was put into that position and failed to meet the demands of the position Weber s Conception of Bureaucracy Hierarchy of offices knowing who s in charge of who Clearly defined scope of authority you only do the job you re qualified to do Business conducted according to written rules Defines the WHY behind actions Decisions are recorded in writing ensuring orderly continuation despite transfer of position and there is an order given that makes sense Officials hired according to formal criteria of qualification ensures quality Officials are salaried and have no personal interest in the disposition of cases need to prevent bias and have impartial and objective workers Regardless what happens their paychecks don t change Weber s Concerns about Bureaucracy Bureaucracy is impersonal is it okay to process people without really considering the individual There s a lack of compassion for society Considerations of efficiency crowd out considerations ofjustice Simple marching orders so if people at the top make a bad choice it s hard to get around and correct that in terms ofjustice t s hierarchical command structure is necessary BUT injurious to human freedom It s never going to be a democracy so the machinery is what will make the choices not the people Are formal rules routinely followed organization Yes No Do formal rules align Yes Weber s bureaucracy Gouldner s bureaucracy with public proposes PunishmentCentered and Mock and goals of the No Kafkaesque bureaucracy Contested Bureaucracy Example of failed bureaucracy failed Masse Company mining explosion in Virginia Don Blankenship was highly regarded in charge of the bureaucracy but is now being charged for not following the safety rules that systematically weren t followed and led to the disastrous explosion Alvin Gouldner Says we can t assume that interests inside industrial or governmental bureaucracies are harmonious and shared Ex workers and bosses may have some common interests BUT they also have areas of opposing interest eg wanting higher vs lower wages Three types 1 workers and managers both find it in their interests to follow the rules Most closely similar to Weber s idea of bureaucracy Ex Safety rules likely to be followed by both to keep workers safe and prevent lossexpenses 2 one party wishes to see that the rules are followed while the other party wishes to avoid following them Ex Fastfood workers have to say quotWould you like to make that a large But they know the customers don t like it and they don t want to annoy them so many don t say it 9 get in trouble with managers for not following rules 3 Neither party feels rulefollowing to be in its interest Ex Nosmoking rule in factory in 1940s implemented by insurance company workers and managers both wanted to smoke so both parties ignored the rule and only stopped when the insurance company was coming to check Related concepts 1977 the rules become decoupled from what actually happens in the institution There is a formal structure AND an informal structure in institutions The informal structure usually shows better how the institution runs but the formal structure is set up to show the external organization what they want to see Rules symbolic Tends to protect the higherups if 1999 Bureaucratic organizations are required to do business in writing but there s no reason to think that these documents are true Often times they lie about the future plans etc in order to deal with risks Leads to disastrous failures Ex Tsunami and Fukushima Nuclear Reactor in 2011 The plant was designed to withstand a tsunami OR an earthquake What wasn t planned for was the combination of both It was too expensive to plan for both so the company didn t fantasize and invest in protecting against both 20000 killed thousands exposed to radiation because of it Plan only called for 1 stretcher 1 satellite phone and 50 suits all for hundreds of workers There was no mention of outside help either Ex Deepwater Oil drilling disaster safety and equipment weren t up to date or followed and the blowout preventer was overused 9 huge explosion and fire Workers had been very worried but forced to keep working even the captain expressed concerns BP and TransOcean were NOT prepared to deal with this incident There documents had MINIMAL response plans and there documents had no real references on how to deal with deepocean spills Bureaucracies have lots of issues when it comes to addressing real potential problems mpications for Regulation Weber s Representative Bureaucracy is RARE Punishmentcentered bureaucracy always threatens to turn into a Mock Regulation must be continually renewed against the constant pressure to relax enforcement Major institutions are engaging in widespread fantasy planning Frans Kafka Almost like the antiWeber Saw bureaucracy as lucrative secretive organizations that cause dread and fear for those in it Ex Health Insurance Recission before Affordable Care Act ACA Poicy health insurers could drop coverage if the applicant gave misleading or false information 2007 LA times investigation found that health insurance companies illegally tied bonuses to recission targets Cancelling policies get a bonus nsurers had whole depts Dedicated to finding legal excuses to drop coverage on policyholders who got sick they pay for their care so if they drop them 9 save SSS mpications for Regulation Kafkaesque Bureaucracy is resilient because it responds to powerful market or political incentives The ACA requires proof of actual fraud Effective regulation must intervene at the level of those incentives changing the logic of the system The ACA prevents the perverse incentives by requiring everyone to have insurance ensuring healthy pool of people and requiring a particular amount of money every year in actual medical care Contested Bureaucracies These basically have no formal rules and there are none really followed Their existence is very hard to find because it s so complex and complicated Conclusions The ability of organizations to carry out public purposes effectively is crucial to our ability to confront pressing issues This routinely fails to happen for reasons sociology can help us understand The future of or entire civilization depends on our ability to deal with these common organizational failures There are great opportunities for ambitious young sociologists to help us understand these problems and what to do about it2


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