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ERIC Number: ED228401
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Pages: 32
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Course Differentiation in the High School: The Perspective of Working Class Females.
Gaskell, Jane
Working-class high school girls choose courses for a variety of reasons, both consciously and subconsciously, and use conventional attitudes to justify their choices to themselves and others, according to working-class girls who volunteered to be interviewed during their free periods in Vancouver (British Columbia) high schools. The girls cited such reasons as dislike of academic courses, dislike of school, availability of jobs after graduation, expected peer and teacher pressure away from male-dominated fields, and desire for interesting and easy studies as their reasons for choosing business courses leading to clerical jobs. Contrary to what might have been expected, students stressed self-choice and did not feel coerced into their choices of curricula. However, these students were actually influenced, consciously or not, by their life experiences to prepare for jobs in low-paying traditional fields in expectation of combining their jobs with domestic chores. Their life experiences did not prepare them to make choices of academic fields, nor would they have been supported in such choices by parents, peers, or schools. In order to change the course choices of working-class girls to more academic pursuits, it would be necessary to broaden their horizons and alter their visions of reality so that they could be comfortable in making such choices. Much research needs to be done and broader-based thinking needs to be encouraged in this area if such change is ever to become a reality. (KC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: British Columbia (Vancouver)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (67th, Montreal, Canada, April 11-14, 1983).