Education

  • Sean Reardon

Leader: Sean Reardon

The purpose of the Education RG is to examine trends in the extent to which educational access and achievement are related to poverty and family background. The scholars working within this RG are examining state-level differences in the effects of social origins, uncovering the causes of the recent rise in the socioeconomic achievement gap, uncovering the causes of the yet more recent turnaround in this rise (among kindergarten children), and examining the ways in which high-achieving children from poor backgrounds can be induced to go to college. The following is a sampling of relevant CPI projects.

Reducing the race gap in test scores: How can the black-white gap in achievement test scores be eliminated? The new Stanford Education Data Archive (SEDA) will provide the most systematic evidence to date on the capacity of school-district policies to reduce the gap.

Colleges and rising income inequality: Are colleges delivering upward mobility for those raised in poverty? The new “Mobility Report Card” will provide unusually detailed data on this fundamental question.

Poverty and schooling on reservations: The noted ethnographer Martin Sánchez-Jankowski is examining how education on reservations can be reformed to reduce dropout, poverty, and suicide. 

Education - CPI Research

Title Author Media
Determined to Succeed? Performance Versus Choice in Educational Attainment Michelle Jackson

Determined to Succeed? Performance Versus Choice in Educational Attainment

Author: Michelle Jackson
Publisher: Stanford University Press
Date: 01/2013

In many countries, concern about socio-economic inequalities in educational attainment has focused on inequalities in test scores and grades. The presumption has been that the best way to reduce inequalities in educational outcomes is to reduce inequalities in performance. But is this presumption correct? Determined to Succeed? is the first book to offer a comprehensive cross-national examination of the roles of performance and choice in generating inequalities in educational attainment. It combines in-depth studies by country specialists with chapters discussing more general empirical, methodological, and theoretical aspects of educational inequality. The aim is to investigate to what extent inequalities in educational attainment can be attributed to differences in academic performance between socio-economic groups, and to what extent they can be attributed to differences in the choices made by students from these groups. The contributors focus predominantly on inequalities related to parental class and parental education.

Family, the Lifecourse, and the Great Recession S. Philip Morgan, Erin Cumberworth, Christopher Wimer

Family, the Lifecourse, and the Great Recession

Author: S. Philip Morgan, Erin Cumberworth, Christopher Wimer
Publisher:
Date: 10/2012

The family is an important setting within which the Great Recession can exert its influence. Although the downturn directly affected many workers by reducing their earnings or forcing them into unemployment, it affected others indirectly by changing their living arrangements or family life. Further, the ways in which families are formed or broken up may be affected by the Great Recession, as it can alter the perceived costs and benefits of various family-relevant behaviors. Amid the turmoil and economic upheaval in the wider economy, individuals and families go about their lives, deciding to get married, suffering through breakups and divorces, planning families, and sorting out their living arrangements. The recession could have major effects on all of these family processes.

The Economic Returns to Higher Education in the BRIC Countries and Their Implications for Higher Education Expansion Martin Carnoy, Prashant Loyalka, Greg V. Androuschchak, Anna Proudnikova

The Economic Returns to Higher Education in the BRIC Countries and Their Implications for Higher Education Expansion

Author: Martin Carnoy, Prashant Loyalka, Greg V. Androuschchak, Anna Proudnikova
Publisher:
Date: 01/2012

This paper focuses on the changing economic value of secondary and higher education in four potential world economic powerhouses - Brazil, Russia, India, and China - known as the BRIC countries. We show that in the past twenty-five years in the BRIC countries, changes in rates of return to higher education have not conformed to the diminishing returns to capital theory, which says that rates decline with level of education and that this pattern holds as countries develop economically and educationally. The rates to university completion have generally risen relative to the rates to investment in lower levels of education, and in all but India are now higher than the payoff to secondary schooling. We argue that this reflects the rapid economic change in all four countries, including their incorporation into the global economy, and, in Russia and China, the transformation from command to increasingly market economies.

Ethnic Inequality in Choice-Driven Education Systems Michelle Jackson, Jan O. Jonsson, Frida Rudolphi

Ethnic Inequality in Choice-Driven Education Systems

Author: Michelle Jackson, Jan O. Jonsson, Frida Rudolphi
Publisher:
Date: 11/2011
The Widening Academic Achievement Gap Between the Rich and the Poor: New Evidence and Possible Explanations Sean F. Reardon

The Widening Academic Achievement Gap Between the Rich and the Poor: New Evidence and Possible Explanations

Author: Sean F. Reardon
Publisher: Russell Sage Foundation Press
Date: 07/2011

In this chapter I examine whether and how the relationship between family socioeconomic characteristics and academic achievement has changed during the last fifty years. In particular, I investigate the extent to which the rising income inequality of the last four decades has been paralleled by a similar increase in the income achievement gradient. As the income gap between high- and low-income families has widened, has the achievement gap between children in high- and low-income families also widened? The answer, in brief, is yes. The achievement gap between children from high- and low-income families is roughly 30 to 40 percent larger among children born in 2001 than among those born twenty-five years earlier. In fact, it appears that the income achievement gap has been growing for at least fifty years, though the data are less certain for cohorts of children born before 1970. In this chapter, I describe and discuss these trends in some detail. In addition to the key finding that the income achievement gap appears to have widened substantially, there are a number of other important findings. First, the income achievement gap (defined here as the average achievement difference between a child from a family at the 90th percentile of the family income distribution and a child from a family at the 10th percentile) is now nearly twice as large as the black-white achievement gap. Fifty years ago, in contrast, the black-white gap was one and a half to two times as large as the income gap. Second, as Greg Duncan and Katherine Magnuson note in chapter 3 of this volume, the income achievement gap is large when children enter kindergarten and does not appear to grow (or narrow) appreciably as children progress through school. Third, although rising income inequality may play a role in the growing income achievement gap, it does not appear to be the dominant factor. The gap appears to have grown at least partly because of an increase in the association between family income and children's academic achievement for families above the median income level: a given difference in family incomes now corresponds to a 30 to 60 percent larger difference in achievement than it did for children born in the 1970s. Moreover, evidence from other studies suggests that this may be in playnodeposit.com part a result of increasing parental investment in children's cognitive development. Finally, the growing income achievement gap does not appear to be a result of a growing achievement gap between children with highly and less-educated parents. Indeed, the relationship between parental education and children's achievement has remained relatively stable during the last fifty years, whereas the relationship between income and achievement has grown sharply. Family income is now nearly as strong as parental education in predicting children's achievement.

Education - CPI Affiliates

Hans-Peter Blossfeld Professor Bamberg University
Harry B. G. Gan... Professor of Sociology and Social Research Methodology Free University Amsterdam
Hiroshi Ishida Professor University of Tokyo
Jaap Dronkers Professor, Social Stratification and Inequality; Director, European Forum European University Institute
Jan O. Jonsson Professor of Sociology Swedish Institute for Social Research

Pages

Education - Other Research

Title Author Media
The American Occupational Structure Peter M. Blau and Otis Dudley Duncan, with the...

The American Occupational Structure

Author: Peter M. Blau and Otis Dudley Duncan, with the...
Publisher: Free Press
Date:

The objective of this book is to present a systematic analysis of the American occupational structure, and, thus, of the major foundation of the stratification system in this society. Processes of social mobility from one generation to the next and from career beginnings to occupational destinations are considered to reflect the dynamics of the occupational structure. By analyzing the patterns of these occupational movements, the conditions that affect them, and some of their consequences, one attempts to explain part of the dynamics of the stratification system in the United States. The inquiry is based on a considerable amount of empirical data collected from a representative sample of over 20,000 American men between the ages of 20 and 64. The survey of "Occupational Changes in a Generation" was carried out as an adjunct to the monthly "Current Population Survey" of the Bureau of the Census. The analysis of the data collected in the survey constitutes the bulk of the material reported in the present book, although occasionally other sources are drawn on as well. As the comparative data from a variety of societies needed for refining the theory of stratification are not available in this study, it has been supplemented with data from mobility surveys of other countries.

The Time Divide: Work, Family, and Gender Inequality Jerry A. Jacobs and Kathleen Gerson

The Time Divide: Work, Family, and Gender Inequality

Author: Jerry A. Jacobs and Kathleen Gerson
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Date:
The Capitalist World-Economy Wallerstein, Immanuel

The Capitalist World-Economy

Author: Wallerstein, Immanuel
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Date:
The Class Structure of the Advanced Societies Anthony Giddens

The Class Structure of the Advanced Societies

Author: Anthony Giddens
Publisher: Hutchinson & Co.
Date:
The Future of Intellectuals and the Rise of the New Class Alvin W. Gouldner

The Future of Intellectuals and the Rise of the New Class

Author: Alvin W. Gouldner
Publisher: Seabury Press
Date:

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