Assess The Importance Of Cultural Facto Essay

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Assess the importance of cultural factors in causing social class differences in educational achievement. (20 marks)

As shown it Item A some sociologists believe that the most important factor that causes social class differences in educational achievement is differences in class. They say that there are deep-rooted differences between the middle class and the working class. An example which they give is that is that the working class promotes and represents Fatalism and collectivism. Fatalism is the idea that events are pre decided and ‘whatever happens will happens’. This will mean they o not try as hard at school as they can as they have been brought up by their parents to thinking that despite their efforts they cannot affect they outcome and ultimately their grades. Collectivism is the thought that it is better to be part of a group than to be an individual and succeed. Both these views completely go against what the middle class would think as the middle class teach their kids to try and do well all of the time. Also being a strong individual can prepare you for later life which is also a view of the middle class.
Some sociologists believe that the use of language, which comes from the home, has a big impact on a Childs grades. For example in poorer background families of the working class the language they use has been found to be very basic and of a low standard. This restricted code that working families use is not used by teachers in the class room and so this puts working class kids at a disadvantage because they may not be able to understand what is being said and taught. Therefore this will lead to poor exam results. However the type of language used in the classroom will suit the middle class kids as they are used to talking in this way at home. This will mean that they have a higher chance of performing well in the exam. This is one of the reasons why some sociologists say that the education system favors the middle class and ignores and declines the working class.
Students from the working class are likely to suffer from economic problems which stems back to the home. This will lead to them suffering from material deprivation which will restrict them from buying recourses like revision guides or even just going on school trips. This is because they cannot afford the costs. This will put them at a disadvantage to the rest of the kids and will led to them under performing in the exam because they have not been able to enhance and expand on their knowledge which revision guides allow you to do. However the middle class are at complete contrast to this as they can afford the cost of recourses that you might need for school and their parents are more than happy to buy these. This will lead to them performing well in the exam and coming out with good grades, better than the working class students. Another factor that links with economic problems is the fact that the middle class can afford to pay of things like private tutors if their child needs extra help. This is something that the working class cannot afford do their child could go without the help they need and are left to fail in the exam which could prove that fatalism exists among the working class.
There are key differences in the attitudes of the parents of working class and middle class students. Working class parents may lack the belief and key interests of education which transfers to their child who will think of not trying as hard as they can in education and come