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Lecture 9

SOCB26H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 9: John Dewey, Deconstruction, Credentialism And Educational Inflation

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Julian Tanner

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SOCB26- March. 20. 2012
Lecture 9
- Schools and social organization: Human capital theory
Schools are the engine room of the economy: school is where job skills are created (The best
paid ppl are the best educated)education does pay off
Investing in education allows societies to ultimately be competitive in a global market
we have way more high school and uni graduates than we need to fill high school jobs
14.7% of ppl have a uni/ high school degree are unemployed
- Critics say
Many graduates are over qualified for the job (doesn’t need knowledge of philosophy to work at
the Bay) and therefore suffer from unemployment
a weak relationship between grades and occupational attainment and performance
We don’t retain much of what we learn in school after the last exam is over
They are underemployed: they can do the jobs without touching on what they learned in school
If the cognitive skills learned in school were so vital, we would then find employers looking for
graduates with the best grades; but we don’t. being a graduate is enough
- why do employers then prefer to hire uni graduates? Credential inflation is the outcome when
you have too many candidates competing for too few jobs in the labour market
Education qualifications become a Bureaucratic screening device
Professionalization: over the past 30/40 years there are a number of occupations that raised
their entry level, there are a number of reasons why occupations like teaching, social work or
nursing has made uni degree as an entry level
1. Raises: improves status or prestige or societal views
2. Money: greater bargaining chip with employers
3. Employers get more legitimacy from having a higher educational labour force, thus the
public will be more trusting
- Critics say
How is it till now that teachers, nurses have been able to do their jobs quite effectively before
the benefits of a uni requirement/ why did society not fall apart/ Has the job really gotten more
School organization: educational systems have become larger, more bureaucratic/ rationalized
over time
Increasingly, since WW2, schools mission has been one of universal education graduating as
many students as possible although motivating large numbers of diverse students is difficult
A challenge to the ‘progressive pedagogy’ (John Dewey) influenced in the 1960’s
How were progressive ideals balanced with the obligations of mass education?
1. The deconstruction of the traditional classroom
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