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Educational Attainment and Inequality

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About this Course

About the Course

In this course, Dr Matthew Cole (University of Birmingham) explores patterns of differential educational attainment along class, gender, and ethnic lines. In the first lecture, we consider three sets of factors shaping unequal attainment – cultural, material, and factors within schools. In the second lecture, we think about differences in attainment between working- and middle-class students, and how these are shaped by material and cultural forces and relationships within schools. Next, we consider the “gender gap” in attainment, focusing especially on arguments that schooling has been “feminised” to favour girls and critiques of this position. In the fourth and final lecture, we look at the more complex ethnic patterns of achievement and explore their causes.

About the Lecturer

Matthew Cole is Teaching Fellow in the Department of History at the University of Birmingham. He is a historian of modern Britain with a particular interest in twentieth century constitutional and party politics, and local history.