Your SlideShare is downloading. ×
  • Like
  • Save
Higher Education
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×

Thanks for flagging this SlideShare!

Oops! An error has occurred.

×

Now you can save presentations on your phone or tablet

Available for both IPhone and Android

Text the download link to your phone

Standard text messaging rates apply

Higher Education

  • 177 views
Published

 

Published in Education
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Be the first to comment
    Be the first to like this
No Downloads

Views

Total Views
177
On SlideShare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
0

Actions

Shares
Downloads
0
Comments
0
Likes
0

Embeds 0

No embeds

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
    No notes for slide
  • 1) The significance attributed to the objectives of higher education is also important because it is reflected in students’ approach to the study of university subjects 2) This is in line with what observed by the research of the European Commission. And most of all it underlines the strong relationships between the socio-economic system and the educational system. Not only a university degree has effects on the position occupied by an individual in society, but also, the socio-economic position of a students affects his outcomes at university. 3) The concepts of Competition, cooperation, social equality, individual worth, that we have mentioned when talking about studies on Higher Education, also caracterize research on the socio-economic system.

Transcript

  • 1. The Right to Knowledge and the Duty to Learn: Social Representations of the Right to Higher Education Serena Fasulo April 30 th 2010 Università di Bologna Tesi di Dottorato in Psicologia Sociale, dello Sviluppo e delle Organizzazioni
  • 2. Agenda
    • Introduction
    • Open issues in existing literature and aims of the present research
    • Study 1 : the shared field of social representations of the right to Higher Education
    • Study 2 : Organising principles
    • and social anchoring
    • General discussion and conclusions
  • 3. Meritocratic principle
    • Intention
    • To reduce status
    • differences
    • Italian Constitution (Art. 34)
    • Universal Declaration of Human rights (Art. 26)
    • Effects
    • It enhances social mobility
    • but not social change
    • Analytical Report for the European Commission (2006): The social dimension of learning
    The right to Higher Education Introduction
  • 4.
    • Social fields theory (Bourdieu, 1977).
    • Economic capital: material resources possessed by individuals
    • Cultural capital: mainly reflects possession of a high graded diploma
    • Augmenting the permeability of group boundaries favours social mobility rather than social change (Tajfel & Turner, 1979)
    The right to Higher Education Introduction
  • 5.
    • Are institutional definitions of the right to Higher Education reflected in students’ social representations?
    • Are these representations shaped by normative beliefs aiming at the maintenance or challenge of the existing social structure?
    • Are these representations anchored in students’ social positions?
    • Social Representations Theory
    • (Moscovici,1961; 1976)
    • The social dynamic model
    • (Doise, Clémence & Lorenzi-Cioldi, 1992)
    Research questions Introduction
  • 6.
    • Social representations of Higher Education
      • Knowledge, culture, diploma, qualification (Moliner, 1996);
      • Intellectual objectives, employment benefits, effort required (Flament, 1999).
        • Culturally- (Flament, 1999) and economically-dominant groups (Tafani, Bellon & Apostolidis, 2002)
        • Culturally- and Economically dominated groups – a logic of social mobility
        • Prestigious General High School degree - high self-esteem (Tafani, Bellon & Moliner, 2002)
    Meritocracy in Higher Education Introduction
  • 7.
    • Mastery goals
    • Performance goals
    Meritocracy in Higher Education Introduction Stronger effort (Darnon & Butera, 2005) Other students as A source of information (Darnon & Butera, 2007) Social comparison Superficial study
  • 8. Meritocracy within society Introduction Equity theory (Deutsch, 1975; 1983) Equity; equality; need Economic productivity Well being within relationship Personal welfare Social Dominance Theory (Sidanius & Pratto, 1999) -> (Pratto, Tatar & Conway-Lanz, 1999) System Justification Theory (Jost & Banaji, 1994; Jost, Banaji & Nosek, 2004) -> (McCoy & Major, 2006) Meritocracy as legitimizing myth (Major, 1994)
  • 9. Justification and challenge in social representations Introduction Social myths “ Be they called représentations collective s, social representations or social (...) stereotypes” Which myths are considered as valid is affected by the individuals’ location within the social system (Tajfel, 1984) Normative representations (Moscovici, 1984): Individuals and social groups are not passively driven by normative representations but they actively contribute to shape them
  • 10. Justification and challenge in social representations Introduction To which extent and within which context do people justify or challenge dominant norms and values? (Augustinos, 1998) Social representations of human rights (Doise, 2001) -> Representations of society involved in opinions toward Solidarity-oriented social policies (Clémence, Egloff, Gardiol & Gobet, 1994) -> Model of lay conceptions of society (Staerklé, Delay, Giannettoni & Roux, 2007)
  • 11. Open issues Higher Education as a right ratified by the Italian Constitution The formulation of this right includes the concept that some rights have to be deserved Relationships between Higher Education and the structure of the socio-economic system Studies on the justification or challenge of inequalities did not consider Higher Education policies as a tool to enhance equality or to preserve the status quo Open issues in existing literature
  • 12. Aims The shared contents of social representations of the right to Higher Education Does social representations held by students reflect the institutional (meritocratic) formulation of the right to Higher Education? Normative beliefs about the socio-economic system as organizing principles of positioning toward Higher Education policies. Anchoring of social representations of the right to Higher Education in students’ social position and in the goals they pursue through university Aims of the present research
  • 13. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Participants 16 students -> 3 groups; Chemistry, DAMS (Drama, Arts and Music Studies), Education Sciences, Fine Arts, Political Sciences, Psychology. 1 hour lenght; Procedure Recruitment: September – October 2008 Three-Phase scheme: Introduction; Discussion; Conclusion and Form filling in
  • 14. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Questions grid 1) We will start our group discussion talking about university: please, tell us about your own experience 2) Think back to your memories about the moment in which you decided to go to university. Which were the most important reasons leading you to this choice? How did the sentence “I am matriculating to university because ...” end for you? 3) What do you think about the admission test, selecting students for the entrance to some universities? 4) According to you, is access to Higher Education a right?
  • 15. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Analyses Tape recorded and transcribed Thematic analysis (Braun & Clarke, 2006; Kellehear, 1993) Analysis of themata (Markova, 2003) Agreement among two coders (Ryan & Bernard, 2000): 88% Results Five main themes: University – University and society – Italian society – Admission test – Right to Higher Education.
  • 16. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Results – University Reasons to attend university External pressures – Personal culture – Job-oriented “ I felt morally obliged to attend university. Nobody said to me 'you have to do it' but (…) everybody in my family has got an academic degree” “ My parents did not got to university and my brother maybe will not. But I felt something insied that pushed me to study” “ If I had found a well paid job, I would not have attended university”
  • 17. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Results – Admission test 1 st Thema: fairness vs . unfairness of the admission test “ For instance, Psychology has an admission test, so that all the people who matriculate to delay the moment in which they will start to work cannot enter. This can help society, in an utopian world. Personally I would put the admission test in every university” “ for example, if there are approximately 200 positions for psychologist, 200 students will be admitted to study Psychology” “ For example there could be a motivation test, instead of a knowledge-based test” “ The existence of an admission test is itself against the right to Higher Education”
  • 18. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Results – Right to Higher Education 2 nd Thema: rights and duties of the individual vs. society “ We have no right which doesn't imply any duty. And the right to Higher Education implies the right to buckle down in study” “ Of course he has the right by nature, but it is simply useless for him, for university, and for society” “ I agree that one student's education is also finalized to the aims of society. For this reason, society has a duty toward that person. (…) it is also important to help students realize their potential”
  • 19. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Results – University and society “ Society cannot abstract itself from what appens within university, because we, the students, will be the future of society, we are the people who will pay taxes in the future” “ They get home and they say '(…) I'm noway interested in this subject, I will copy all homework'” “ Superficiality invests all fields of social and work life, not only education” “ There ought to be a different society, not only a different university”
  • 20. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Discussion Instrumental – mastery – pressures High School (Flament, 1999) => Social representation of Higher Education after matriculation Our results: The same dimensions also identify the goal pursued when decided to attend university
  • 21. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Discussion Admission test FAIR vs. UNFAIR BUT NECESSARY Less hard-working and skilled students don't have to gain the same outcomes of most proficient ones -> relative ability (Buttler, 1992; Urdan, 1997) University ought to help students to realize their potential -> Task focused (Nicholls 1984) Performance and mastery goals social comparison or co-operation partners (Darnon & Butera, 2007)
  • 22. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Discussion Right to Higher Education Duties-enhancing -> everybody has the right to HE by nature but it has to be applied on the basis of deservingness Rights enhancing -> The right to HE is ratified by the Italian Constitution and institutions have to assure all the access and the best fruition possible of this right Generalized agreement but limited application (Bechlivanou et al., 1990; Doise, 2002; Staerklé & Clémence, 1999)
  • 23. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Discussion Institutions Constitutional right -> justify opposite positions Selection is unfair -> it limits the access to a right Selection is fair -> every right entails some duty Lack of information : Meritocracy is not included in the definition of this right. Reintroduced in the pro-selection discourse
  • 24. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Discussion University and society Negative tendency: get ahead without working Meritocracy to embank this tendency Meritocracy as the basis of a just and legitimate system (Major et al., 2002) BUT as a just and legitimate system to be pursued. The current one is not perceived as just nor legitimate.
  • 25. Study 1 Shared contents of students’ social representations of the right to Higher Education Open issues WHY DO THE SAME PREMISE DRIVE TO OPPOSITE CONCLUSIONS? WHICH RELATIONSHIPS AMONG THE REASONS TO ATTEND UNIVERSITY AND THE DEFINITION OF THE RIGHT TO HIGHER EDUCATION? WHICH RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN BELIEFS ABOUT SOCIETY AND SOCIAL REPRESENTATIONS OF THE RIGHT TO HIGHER EDUCATION?
  • 26. Study 2 Organising principles of social representations of the right to Higher Education and their social anchoring Second and third phase: Organizing principles of interindividual differences and their anchoring in related systems of symbolic meanings (Doise et al., 1992) -> systematic variations in the weight individuals or groups give to different dimensions underlying the structure of the representational field. -> how social positions or social identities are organized and how they anchor people's representations (Doise, 1993) Organizing principles as the articulation between individuals' social positions – anchoring – and their position toward institutional policies -> model of lay conceptions of society (Staerklé et al., 2007)
  • 27. Study 2 Organising principles of social representations of the right to Higher Education and their social anchoring SOCIAL ANCHORING 3 levels of analysis (Doise, 1992; 1993) psychological – sociological – psychosociological Reasons to attend university Personal culture Socio-economic ascent External pressures Belief in a fixed social reality Faculty – High school degree
  • 28. Study 2 Organising principles of social representations of the right to Higher Education and their social anchoring HYPOTHESES 1) Anchoring of normative beliefs (A) Psychological -> Reasons : socio-economic (Deutsch, 1975) (McCoy & Major, 2006) (B) Psychosociological -> Belief in a fixed reality : High (Chiu et al., 1997; Cunningham, 1987) (C) Sociological -> Faculty : Hierarchy enhancing (Haley & Sidanius, 2005, Dambrun, 2009)-> Involvement in human rights (Spini & Doise, 1998) -> High school : General High School (Croizet et al., 2002; Tafani et al., 2002) -> Region : North – Social identity (Tajfel & Turner, 1979) – Social Dominance (Sidanius & Pratto, 1999)
  • 29. Study 2 Organising principles of social representations of the right to Higher Education and their social anchoring HYPOTHESES 2) Normative beliefs -> position toward Higher Education meritocratic policies Symboic tools to preserve or challenge the current social order (Staerklé et al., 2007; Staerklé, 2009) Conservative social policies are predicted by the tendency to preserve the current hierarchies among social groups (Jost & Thompson, 2005)
  • 30. Study 2 Organising principles of social representations of the right to Higher Education and their social anchoring HYPOTHESES 3) Social positions -> position toward Higher Education meritocratic policies (A) Reasons to attend university – socio-economic ascent (Deutsch, 1975) (B) Belief in a fixed reality – High (Chiu et al., 1997; Cunningham, 1987) (C) Faculty – Hierarchy-enhancing faculties High School degree – General High School (Croizet et al., 2002; Tafani et al., 2002) Region – North: preserve the status quo
  • 31. Study 2 Organising principles of social representations of the right to Higher Education and their social anchoring Method Questionnaire Participants 395 students Agriculture (n = 38) Economics (n = 100) Engineering (n = 70) Literature (n = 23) Medicine (n = 9) Political Sciences (n = 36) Psychology (n = 87)
  • 32. Study 2 Organising principles of social representations of the right to Higher Education and their social anchoring Method Measures – Anchoring variables SOCIAL POSITION WITHIN UNIVERSITY Faculty - High School SOCIO-ECONOMIC POSITION Region of origin (Jost et al., 2005) REASONS TO ATTEND UNIVERSITY ad hoc scale 3 subscales BELIEF IN A FIXED REALITY (Chiu et al., 1997) Personal culture (Alfa= .60) Socio-economic ascent (Alfa = .64) External pressures (Alfa = .47) 3 items (Alfa = .88)
  • 33. Study 2 Organising principles of social representations of the right to Higher Education and their social anchoring Method Measures – Anchoring variables SOCIAL POSITION WITHIN UNIVERSITY Faculty High School (Croizet et al., 2002) SOCIO-ECONOMIC POSITION Region of origin (Jost et al., 2005) REASONS TO ATTEND UNIVERSITY ad hoc scale 3 subscales BELIEF IN A FIXED REALITY Personal culture (Alfa= .60) Socio-economic ascent (Alfa = .64) Job-oriented (Alfa = .61) Belief in a fixed reality scale (Chiu et al., 1997) 3 items (Alfa = .88)
  • 34. Study 2 Organising principles of social representations of the right to Higher Education and their social anchoring Method Measures – Normative beliefs Economic system justification scale (Kay & Jost, 2003) 16 items (Alpha = .79) Social dominance orientation (Pratto, Sidanius, Stallworth & Malle, 1994) 16 items (Alpha = .90) Preference for the merit principle (Davey, Bobocel, Son Hing & Zanna, 1999) 14 items (alpha = .66) Positions toward Higher Education policies Admission policies 9 items (alpha = .87) Fruition policies 3 items (alpha = .53 -> .60)
  • 35. Study 2 Anchoring variables
  • 36. Study 2 Normative beliefs Factor analysis Three factors – 51.25% of variance 1. Unequal distribution of resources (24.57% var): maintenance of social and economic inequities. M = 2.88 -> alpha = .91 2. Hierarchic relationships among social groups (14.14% var): some social groups should dominate on others. M = 2.40 -> alpha = .81 SDO: general anti-egalitarianism and group-based dominance (Jost & Thompson, 2005) 3. Meritocracy (12.54%); Individual achievement through the equity principle of distributive justice. M = 5.26 -> alpha = .75
  • 37. Study 2 Normative beliefs Anchoring of normative beliefs
  • 38. Study 2 Normative beliefs Anchoring of normative beliefs
  • 39. Study 2 Normative beliefs Anchoring of normative beliefs
  • 40. Study 2 Positions toward Higher Education policies Factor analysis Two factors – 52.59% of variance 1. Access policies (36.32% var): limitation of the access to university through the admission test . Higher Education to be reserved to the able and worthy students M = 3.78 -> alpha = .74 2. Fruition policies (16.27% var): F irst-class Higher Education to the most able and worthy students . M = 3.32 -> alpha = .52
  • 41. Study 2 Positions toward Higher Education policies Note. For step 2, F inc (3, 289) = .87, p = .000 Postitions toward Higher Education access policies
  • 42. Study 2 Positions toward Higher Education policies Note . For step 2, F inc (10, 295) = 1.27, p = .000. Postitions toward Higher Education fruition policies
  • 43. Study 2 Positions toward Higher Education policies Regional origin Agreement with meritocratic access policies Unequal distribution of resources Note . * p <.05; ** p <.01 Z = 1.85; p < .05 .15** .13* (.11) .22**
  • 44. Study 2 Positions toward Higher Education policies Belief in a fixed reality Agreement with meritocratic access policies Unequal distribution of resources Note . * p <.05; ** p <.01 Z = 2.60; p < .01 .35** .23** (.19*) .17**
  • 45. Study 2 Positions toward Higher Education policies Regional origin Agreement with meritocratic fruition policies Hierarchic group relationships Note . * p <.05; ** p <.01 Z = 3.73; p < .001 .13* .11* (.08) .27*
  • 46. Study 2 Positions toward Higher Education policies Socio-economic reasons Agreement with meritocratic fruition policies Hierarchic group relationships Note . * p <.05; ** p <.01 Z = 3.73; p < .001 .31** .18** (.13*) .24**
  • 47. Study 2 Positions toward Higher Education policies Socio-economic reasons Agreement with meritocratic fruition policies Meritocracy Note . * p <.05; ** p <.01 Z = 3.73; p < .001 .22** .18** (.16*) .13*
  • 48. Study 2 Discussion 1 st Hypothesis: social positions -> normative beliefs Unequal distribution – region, high school, faculty, fixed reality Hierarchic relationships – region, faculty, reasons (socio-economic, job oriented), fixed reality Meritocracy – reasons, belief in a fixed reality. -> high support regardless of socio-economic status and of status within university
  • 49. Study 2 Discussion 2 nd Hypothesis: Normative beliefs shape positions toward Higher Education policies. In line with social representations of social order (Staerklé et al., 2007) Unequal distribution and meritocracy -> admission Social hierarchies -> fruition (Jost & Thompson, 2005)
  • 50. Study 2 Discussion 3 rd hypothesis: Partially confirmed. Two variables no relationship: Faculty and High school -> Students answered as citizens rather then referring to the educational context Mediational analyses: Regional origin -> opposition to equality and group-based dominance -> policies Maintain existing inequalities Socio-economic reasons -> group based dominance and meritocracy -> policies Competitive perspective: achieve a dominant position within a hierarchical social structure Belief in a fixed reality -> opposition to equality Higher Education policies as a symbolic device to preserve inequalities
  • 51. Study 2 General discussion and conclusions Social representations of the right to Higher Education: shared contents, differences in interindividual positionings and their social anchoring -> The meritocratic formulation of the right -> same premises for different conclusions (the right to knowledge and the duty to learn) -> Higher Education policies as symbolic devices to adfirm a specific conception of the socio-economic system – Higher Education as opportunity – mistrust in social change and meritocracy -> The reasons to attend university as psychological anchoring Limits: not representative sample; time is not considered; focus group analyses; the support for social change ought to be also explicitely considered