Chapter 13 – Education

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Espenshade, Chung, and Walling (2004) studied admission to elite colleges and found that Group A was four times more likely to gain admission, and Group B was three times more likely to be admitted. Groups A and B are, respectively:

athletes and legacy students

Cultural capital refers to:

social class-based skills and resources that people inherit and can use to their advantage

The SAT was developed in order to provide children from public schools with a chance to demonstrate their fitness for college and to show they were as able as students from private high schools. It is therefore ironic that:

researchers now question how meritocratic the SAT is, because the SAT may test knowledge that is biased against certain groups

With regard to biological or genetic differences between people, sociologists have found that:

stigmatized minorities in all countries have lower IQ scores, lower educational attainment, and lower occupational status, indicating that social processes of stratification and stigmatization affect the life chances of these groups

What is the relationship between birth weight and education?

Siblings who weighed less at birth exhibit lower educational attainment than their heavier siblings

Which of the following is NOT a finding of research examining the effects of class size on educational achievement?

Students who have been in small classes are less likely to have discipline problems when they are subsequently placed in regular‐sized classes

What might be a reason that upper-status students score higher on SATs?

Their parents are better able to obtain help for them, as in SAT prep courses and extra tutoring if they are doing poorly in school

With regard to the effects of families on children’s educational outcomes, which of the following is true?

When a family goes from two to three children, middle children are significantly more affected by the loss of family resources

Which of the following trends in current educational achievement is NOT supported by research evidence?

Only girls whose parents are college-educated achieve as much as boys

Which of the following examples would NOT be supported by the research findings on the influence of home characteristics on education?

The activities of summer camps, community programs, and home environments are not important factors in the academic achievements of higher social class children who are performing well during the school year

William, a 17-year-old high school student, chooses products in the grocery store by looking at the pictures on the labels of the goods on the shelves because he cannot read many of the words. William would be considered:

functionally illiterate

According to your text, approximately what percentage of the nation’s population 16 years and older is innumerate?

22 percent

All of the following are among the best practices for effective teaching listed by Langlois and Zales EXCEPT:

adopting strategies to encourage students to share compliments and insults

Which of the following is NOT an argument against tracking in schools?

Tracking benefits children with less-advantaged backgrounds, but only if their parents can advocate on their behalf to get them into college-preparatory tracks.

When studies control for family background characteristics, the SAT:

no longer predicts college grades very well.

Which of the following is NOT a sociological criticism of the idea that IQ affects educational outcomes?

If there is a relationship between innate intelligence and educational performance, then there is no need to look at social factors.

With regard to research on the effects of race and social class on education outcomes, which of the following is true?

When social class characteristics are controlled for, test score gaps between black and white students shrink, black students have a higher high school graduation rate, and black students are less likely to be held back a grade.

What was the nature of the scandal surrounding the SAT Reasoning Test in the spring of 2006?

The College Board admitted there was a scoring error that tended to incorrectly underestimate the scores on more than 4,000 tests

Though she graduated from high school, Jenny does not possess the skills necessary to balance her checkbook or make change for a customer without the aid of a cash register. Jenny is:


A prominent hypothesis about the effect of family size on children’s educational outcomes is the:

resource dilution model

At 9:05 A.M., the bell rings and children file into their third-grade classroom. The first student to sit at his or her desk-book open and pencil ready to write-wins a star for the day. The students love this little bit of competition. This example of nonacademic socialization (which can teach students the benefit of competition) can be referred to as the:

hidden curriculum

Boys are more likely to engage in risky behaviors and experience problems at school; boys are also more likely to ____________ than girls.

take math and science AP classes, and score higher

Social capital is:

the collection of relationships that can facilitate the actions and behaviors of others

When classrooms are divided into ability levels, type of preparation, or according to future plans, it is called:


In part because of their educational success, which group has been called the "model minority" in America?

Asian Americans

Affirmative action practices refer to policies that:

grant preferential treatment to subgroups within a population

Which of the following illustrates the concept of cultural capital?

Joshua and Sam have both earned bachelor’s degrees from a local university and are now interviewing for the same job. When Joshua goes into the job interview, he is able to discuss art, architecture, and travel experiences he had while growing up. Sam has not had these same experiences and is not able to have the same kind of conversations with the interviewers

According to Bourdieu, the three types of cultural capital are:

embodied, objectified, and institutional

Which of the following is a factor affecting the strong academic performance of Asian Americans?

There is a high degree of social capital in Asian American communities, and the community reinforces norms regarding education and parenting

One of the major reasons Native Americans were placed in boarding schools for 60 years was:

to socialize them to become "civilized" Americans

Research has shown that the ____________ the family, the ____________ the children’s achievement on test scores and grades.

larger; lower

Which of the following is NOT an argument in support of the sorting function served by schools?

Students are sorted in ways that reproduce existing social inequalities

One of the major reasons that lower-status parents use more directives and teach their children to be more obedient than inquisitive is that they:

tend to have jobs that require them to be obedient and they want their children to learn this

Which of the following was NOT a characteristic of Project STAR?

The students were aged 13 to 17

Which of the following is NOT mentioned in your text as a criticism of using the SAT as a college admissions criterion?

The SAT does not predict college success well for older students who have been out of high school for some time; admission criteria need to be adjusted for adult students

The research on teacher quality demonstrates that:

it is difficult to identify characteristics that will make effective teachers because these characteristics are hard to quantify.

Thomas transfers to a new school when his family moves to a new district, and he is placed in a classroom with students who have slightly higher average math grades than he does. Thomas is concerned that he will fall behind. Based on the research, what is the most likely outcome?

Thomas will succeed and make academic gains when he is in the classes with other high achievers.

According to Espenshade and Chung (2005), eliminating affirmative action programs would do which of the following?

decrease black and Hispanic admission acceptance rates by one-half to two-thirds

One of the most interesting findings from the Coleman Report was that:

when lower-class students went to school with more upper-status students, their grades improved

Suzanne and Jessica are best friends. Both have been in the same classes throughout elementary school and have performed similarly with respect to grades. Suzanne’s dad owns his own company and her mom is a lawyer. Jessica’s dad is a plumber and her mom works at Wal-Mart. All other things being equal, which is a true statement?

Suzanne is more likely than Jessica to stay in school longer, score higher on cognitive tests, and be placed in college preparatory classes in high school

According to functionalist theories of education, which of the following would NOT be a function of the American education system?

ndoctrination into capitalist ideology

the process through which academic, social, and cultural ideas and tools, both general and specific, are developed.


the nonacademic and less overt socialization functions of schooling.

Hidden curriculum

the information, knowledge of people, and connections that help individuals enter, gain power in, or otherwise leverage social networks.

Social capital

a way of dividing students into different classes by ability or future plans


an overemphasis on credentials (e.g., college degrees) for signaling social status or qualifications for a job.


a set of policies that grant preferential treatment to a number of particular subgroups within the population – typically, women and historically disadvantaged racial minorities.

Affirmative action

an individual’s position in a stratified social order.

Social class [a.k.a socioeconomic status (SES)]

symbolic and interactional resources that people use to their advantage in various situations.

Cultural capital

when members of a negatively stereotyped group are placed in a situation where they fear they may confirm those stereotypes.

Stereotype threat

hypothesis stating that parental resources are finite and that each additional child dilutes them.

Resource dilution model

functional illiteracy plagues about ____________ percent of the nation’s population 16 years of age and older


innumeracy is experiences by ____________ percent of the population ages 16 and older


____________ programs might focus on carpentry or mechanical schools


____________ schools train doctors and lawyers


people can deliberately invest in knowledge and skills, called (blank), that make them more productive and bankable

human capital

the nonacademic socialization and training that take place in the schooling system

hidden curriculum

who coined the term hidden curriculum

Philip Jackson

under the banner "____________" Americans set up boarding schools, such as the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania, which took children as young as sick away from their families to teach them more "civilized" ways of life

"kill the Indian, save the child"

1910-1970 in Australia an estimated 100,000 Aboriginal and "half-caste" children were taken from their families and made legal wards of the state – these children were placed in British-run camps or schools
they are known as the…

"stolen generation"

Pitirim Sorokin argued that schools are

sorting machines

____________ was conducted in 1964, 10 years after Brown v. Board of Education, when public schools throughout the nation were still highly segregated

Coleman Report

what did the Coleman Report find?

found that differences in resources between schools didn’t matter in educational outcomes

Coleman Report found that certain differences such as (2 things) could be attributed to:

1. family background 2. other peers with whom students attend schools

a longitudinal, four-year study, provided evidence that schools with smaller classes significantly benefited their students compared to schools with larger classes

Project STAR

after dividing the private institutions into Catholic and non-Catholic schools, researchers determined that ____________ schools were the most successful in preparing students academically, particularly students from disadvantaged backgrounds


James Coleman and Thomas Hoffer suggest that the strong effects of the Catholic schools stem from the large amounts of ____________ in the community

social capital

any relationship between people that can facilitate the actions of others

social capital

Richard Arum and Yossi Shavit ascertained that students who graduated from ____________ tracks were less likely to be unemployed and more likely to enter the workforce as skilled laborers


____________ students enrolled in Catholic schools actually do better than Catholic students


although tracking gives some students educational advantages, it disproportionately awards these advantages to those who are already ____________


in the early 1960s Robert Rosenthal and Lenore Jacobson visited an elementary school at the beginning of the academic year and administered IQ tests, which measure cognitive abilities such as verbal and numerical reasoning and knowledge, to all students – they then ____________ at the end of the school year, the researchers ____________ concluded ____________

randomly selected students and told the teachers that these students were especially bright and had the most potential for growth; researchers retested the students and found that those who had been labeled "bright" did significantly better on the new IQ test than their peers; concluded that teachers expectations can affect student achievement

when teachers hold higher expectations for certain students, these students responded by meeting teacher expectations – this process is called the ____________ or more commonly the self-fulfilling prophecy

Pygmalion effect

most effective teaching methods:
(4 things)

1. minimizing lost class time to activities other than instruction 2. having clear expectations for acceptable behavior and consistent consequences for misbehavior 3. maintaing a fixed routine 4. setting high standards for class work

in 1910 fewer than ____________ percent of men and women over age 25 had a college degree – by 2008 this number had jumped to ____________ percent of the population

3; 29

how can we explain the differences between the percent of people with college degrees in 1910 and 2008?

1. funtionalist perspective 2. conflict perspective

which perspective is:
the rise of education boils down to simple supply and demand

functionalist perspective

which perspective is:
according to this perspective of education the dramatic increase in college graduation may be traced to American views on education and the expansion of the school system in the twentieth century

conflict perspective

the conflict perspective also provides an explanation for the rise of (blank): an overemphasis on credentials for signaling a social status or qualifications for a job


research confirms that the SAT accurately predicts not only freshmen year GPA but a variety of other outcomes, including:
(3 things)

1. class rank 2. likelihood of graduation 3. a student’s chance of obtaining an advanced degree

the SAT only accurately predicts that college outcomes for ____________ students


in a study of admissions practices at elite schools, Thomas Espenshade, Chang Chung, and Joan Walling found that despite low SAT scores ____________ and ____________ were likely to be admitted into elite colleges

athletes and legacies

a set of policies that grant preferential treatment to a number of particular subgroups within the population – typically, women and historically disadvantaged racial minorities (see page 8 in notes for myths and truths)

affirmative action

can we trust IQ to be reliable?


symbolic and interactional resources that people use to their advantage in various situation

cultural capital

who coined the term cultural capital?

Pierre Bourdieu

Pierre Bourdieu recognized three distinct types of cultural capital:

1. embodied 2. objectified 3. institutionalized

when researchers have controlled for ____________, many of the black-white educational gaps are significantly narrowed – after factoring out class differences, African Americans had a greater chance of graduating from high school, were 44% less likely to be held back a grade, and were equally likely to be suspended or expelled from school as white students


a related psychological process that might contribute to black under-achievement, particularly in high-stakes testing situations, is (blank): when members of a negatively stereotyped group are placed in a situation where they fear they may confirm those stereotypes

stereotype threat

a final explanation for African American underachievement that refuses to die out is the idea that racial differences in intelligence are ____________


____________ score lower on the SATs, have a higher rate of repeating grades, and are suspended or expelled at higher rates than white students


____________ have the highest high-school dropout rate of any minority group in the nation


____________ consistently score higher on tests of math ability, having higher GPAs, and going to college at higher rates


in recent years ____________ have been less likely to repeat a grade or drop out of high school


which gender outperforms the other in national reading and writing tests and scores roughly equal in math


____________ attend college in higher numbers and are more likely to graduate


make up a larger proportion of those taking calculus and science AP tests, and, on average


____________ score higher on every AP test except foreign language


three factors (within the family) that have significant impact on education achievement include:

1. number of children 2. their spacing 3. their gender

the bigger the family…

the lower the children’s achievement test scores and grades

families with siblings spaced close together have students with…

lower achievement scores and grades

the ____________ child is the one who suffers from less parental monetary investment and runs a greater risk of being held back a grade (particularly boys)


What was the name of the landmark court ruling that mandated desegregation of American schools?

Brown v. Board of Education

Marilee Jones, former dean of admissions at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), resigned from her position in April 2007 after it came to light that she had fabricated her academic record and claimed to have academic degrees she did not have. While this is an extreme case, it illustrates the overemphasis on qualifications such as college degrees in order to be hired for a job. This is known as:


Which of the following would NOT be an example of social capital?

A high percentage of students at St. Mary’s Academy take music lessons and are taking college preparatory classes

Taking into account students’ family backgrounds, ____________ schools tend to outperform ____________ schools in preparing children academically.

Catholic; non-Catholic private

With regard to race and high school graduation rates, which of the following is correct?

In 2010, about 84 percent of blacks aged 25 and older had graduated from high school, as compared to about 87 percent of whites in the same age range.

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