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HIST 3311 Final: Final Study Guide

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HIST 3311
Michael Eisman

Final Exam Study Guide First Half Intro Readings: Purposes of Education, Contemporary Goals of High School Teaching (Labaree, Friedman) Democratic Equality: for citizens, everyone needs to know as much as possible, education needs to be accessible to everyone to create a true democracy, and anyone can contribute (public good). Most political purpose of American education. Three distinct operational forms: citizenship training (prevent selfishness, instill dedication to public, need to training), equal treatment (Horace Mann (father of the common school), fear of class conflict, sense of shared membership and community, egalitarian to sex, race, ethnicity), equal access (everyone should have an equal opportunity, provide enough schools, higher education becomes the norm). Social Efficiency: for workers, everyone benefits from more skilled workers, make education more practical by offering more practical study matters and some degree of stratification (private training for public benefit). Practical constraints, vocationalism: make the school curriculum more responsive to job needs. Ruled by the simple reality that students eventually leave schools and join the workforce. Result was the creation of vocational programs, particularly at high school and community college levels. General education seen as impractical: For a long time all boys were trained to be President... Now we are training them to get jobs. (Robert and Helen Lynd). Compelling logic: benefits public (anyone) to spend on education. It is in the interest of the taxpayer (sound investment). Social Mobility: for individuals, the benefit largely goes to the individual consumer, who gains a salary increase or maintains hisher position on the social scale; this provides further stratification and differentiation between institutions (even with similar programs), as well as within institutions (from remedial to gifted). Individual benefit, status attainment. Private good. Asks what can a school do for me, the individual consumer? Education understood as a way to get ahead or stay in sync. Grading, hierarchy, more selective at higher levels to ensure distinction. Qualitative differences between institutions. Contrasts with previous two, education is seen as an exchange value rather than a use value. Students quickly come to the conclusion that what matters most is not the knowledge they learn in school but the credentials they acquire there (Labaree). Education becomes more meritocratic, leads to competition and wariness => fairness. Meritocracy much more visible in higher levels. Credentialism: translating educational attainment into social attainment. Since the interests are either job competency or general knowledge (from gen ed.), credentials are expected to be irrelevant. The reality is the opposite Boudons model predicts this. Elevates schooling into an instrument for achieving the American dream. Credentials market is where aspirations raised by education meet the cold reality of socioeconomic limits. Educational opportunities grow faster than job opportunities. The ability of a diploma to buy a good job declines. Credentialism undermines learning, promotes spending time and money for little economic benefit. Carries out in a manner that is individually rational and collectively irrational. Learning How to Learn: First of the five skill sets or attitudes toward learning that Friedmans own reporting suggests would be helpful in preparing young people for the new middle jobs in a flat world. New ways of doing old things or new ways of doing new things. Jobs and industries will be churned up faster and faster due to digitization, automation, and outsourcing; how you learn that will set you apart. Favorite teachers not what they taught but excited to learn it, inspired by them. You have to love learning to learn how to learn because its about being motivated to teach yourself. Others may develop the motivation with the right teacher.
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