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ERIC Number: EJ915367
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Feb
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 42
ISSN: ISSN-0309-877X
Questions of Degree? Middle-Class Rejection of Higher Education and Intra-Class Differences in Educational Decision-Making
Morrison, Andrew
Journal of Further and Higher Education, v35 n1 p37-54 Feb 2011
This article is an analysis of middle-class rejection of higher education. The author uses accounts of the educational decision-making of three female students, all identified to be from broadly middle-class backgrounds, from within full-time vocational further education in the United Kingdom, as a means to consider two issues. First, the author discusses the young women's rejection of higher education in the context of a widening participation agenda that has focused principally upon working-class, "non-traditional" students. Second, the article will highlight and discuss some apparently subtle but important differences between the accounts of the three young women. The differences, which emerged in the ways in which educational choices were framed by the research participants and in their perceptions of the risk of pursuing a higher education course, reflect complex differential access to cultural and material resources within the middle class, a social grouping that is frequently thought of as having an unproblematic relationship to higher education. Two conclusions are drawn from the study. First, it is argued that assumptions of middle-class homogeneity in the literature related to educational decision-making need to be challenged. Second, policy-makers must recognise that not all young people will want to enter higher education, no matter how much they are encouraged through a variety of initiatives, and therefore we must value better the aspirations of those who choose not to do so. (Contains 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Adult Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom