ERIC Number: EJ719588
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Sep
Reference Count: 18
The Construction of a Mathematical "Habitus": Implications of Ability Grouping in the Middle Years
Journal of Curriculum Studies, v37 n5 p607-619 Sep 2005
Ability grouping is a common practice in many mathematics classrooms. Its negative effects on students have been documented in research spanning two decades or more, and yet it is still widely implemented--in some countries even mandated. Using data from interviews with Australian students in the compulsory years of secondary schooling (14-16 year-olds), and using the theoretical tools offered by Bourdieu, I argue that the objective practices of school mathematics create an environment through which students internalize the practices to develop a sense of self, a "habitus". This "habitus" potentially is more or less empowering, depending on the experiences within these streamed settings.
Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Ability Grouping, Foreign Countries, Self Concept, Interviews, Teacher Attitudes, Student Attitudes, Educational Practices, Mathematics Skills
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia