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ERIC Number: EJ825401
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Feb
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 57
ISSN: ISSN-0305-4985
Buying Your Way into College? Private Tuition and the Transition to Higher Education in Ireland
Smyth, Emer
Oxford Review of Education, v35 n1 p1-22 Feb 2009
A number of countries, including Ireland, have experienced a recent growth in the prevalence of "shadow education", that is, paid private tuition outside the schooling system. Previous international studies have indicated that such tuition can enhance academic performance and facilitate access to tertiary education. However, such studies have rarely taken account of important differences between those taking private tuition and other students. This paper explores the characteristics of students taking private tuition and the impact of such tuition on academic outcomes in the Republic of Ireland. Participation in private tuition is disproportionately concentrated among students from middle-class families, those with higher prior performance and those with greater engagement in the schooling process. When the selective nature of the group taking private tuition is accounted for, private tuition yields no advantages in terms of upper secondary examination performance. It is argued that, rather than representing a rational strategy for the middle classes to secure educational advantage, participation in private tuition must be seen in the context of the competitive examination system in operation. (Contains 4 figures, 4 tables and 10 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Ireland