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Chapter 16

Chapter note from Sociology in Our Times 5th Canadian Edition: Chapter 16 Education

Course Code
SOC 103
Sal Guzzo

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Chapter 16: Education
An Overview of Education
Education: is the social institution responsible for the systematic transmission of
knowledge, skills, and cultural values within a formally organized structure
A social institution that imparts values, beliefs, and knowledge considered essential
to the social reproduction of individual personalities and entire cultures
Early socialization first at family and friends
Then, socialization passes to the schools and other more formalized organizations
created for the purpose of educating
Sociology of education: entire subfield of sociology devoted to education
Education in Historical- Global Perspective
Micro level, people must acquire the basic knowledge and skills they need to survive
in society
Macrolevel, the social institution of education is an essential component in
maintaining and perpetuating the culture of a society across generations
Cultural transmission: the process by which children and recent immigrants
become acquainted with the dominant cultural beliefs, values, norms and
accumulated knowledge of a society (occurs through informal and formal education)
Informal Education in Preliterate Societies
Preliterate societies: have no written language and are characterized by basic
technology and a simple division of labour
Informal education: learning that occurs in a spontaneous, unplanned way
Can happen through storytelling or ritual ceremonies that convey cultural messages
and provide behavioural norms
Formal Education in Pre-industrial Industrial, and Post-Industrial Societies
Preindustrial societies: have written language, few people know how to read and
write, and formal education is often reserved for the privileged

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Formal education: learning that takes place within an academic setting, such as a
school, which has a planned instructional process and teachers who convey specific
knowledge skills, and thinking processes to students
Beginning of education in Canada: missionaries trying to civilize Aboriginal children
Roman Catholic Church was central to the institution of education
Renaissance, focus of education shifted from human depravity to the importance of
developing well-rounded and liberally educated people
Only rich went to school. Poor people worked on farm where education wasnt
Egerton Ryerson, free schooling
Mass education: refers to providing free, public schooling for wide segments of a
nations population
Public schools to serve as the primary agent of socialization for millions of European
immigrants arriving in Canada
Core curriculum: courses such as mathematics, social sciences, natural sciences,
and English
Three Rs: Reading, riting, and rithmetic
Controversy on what should be taught, how it should be taught and who should
teach it
Contemporary Education in Japan
Emphasize conformity and nationalism
Beginning very young, toddlers sent to cram schools (jukus)
Women account for less than 5% of all colleges and universities
Lack of child care facilities within universities
Sociology Perspectives on Education
Functionalists, education contributes to the maintenance of society and provides
people with an opportunity for self-enhancement and upward mobility

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Conflict, education perpetuates social inequality and benefits the dominant class at
the expense of all others
Symbolic interactionists, focus on classroom dynamics and the effect of self-concept
on grades and aspirations
Postmodern theorists, view the education system as a social institution characterized
by permeability
Functionalist Perspective
Education one of the most important components of society
Durkheim, education is crucial for promoting social solidarity and stability in society
We can learn from what others already have experienced
Moral Education: because it conveys moral values, the foundation of a cohesive
social order
School a commitment to the common morality
Group needs ahead of individual desires and aspirations
Royal Commission of Learning, purposes of schooling:
oEnsure for all students high levels of literacy by building on basic reading,
writing, and problem solving
oDevelop an appreciation of learning
oPrepare students for responsible citizenship
Manifest Functions of Education
Manifest functions: open, stated, and intended goals or consequences of activities
within an organization or institution
Five major manifest functions
Lean appropriate attitudes and behaviour for the student role
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