Material Type:
Community College / Lower Division
Ohio Open Ed Collaborative
  • Oss0212
  • Sociology
    Creative Commons Attribution
    Media Formats:

    Education Standards

    Explain how historical and current patterns of social inequality impact education.


    OER Text material

    Sociology: Understanding and Changing the Social World, Sections: 16.3
    16.3 reviews the inequalities of educational attainment, the impact education has on income and the influence of education on moral and social attitudes.

    Sociology: Understanding and Changing the Social World, Sections:, 16.4.1, 16.4.2, and 16.4.5
    16.4.1 reviews how education perpetuates inequality. 16.4.2 reviews the historical and contemporary existence of segregation in schools. 16.4.5 explores why we see social inequalities reflected in the higher education system.

    Supplementary Material (Videos and Reading)

    1. The Importance Of Social Institutions, Annette Lareau in Boston Review 
      In this brief article, Lareau discusses how educational institutions are intertwined with different parental groups and how educational practices change over time.  Childrearing practices and institutional failures & successes are critically appraised.  Oft lauded as the ‘successful’ parenting style, concerted cultivation sand the institutional support for this approach, is held up for scrutiny.

    2. What's Wrong With The American School System (excerpt from the documentary, Waiting for Superman, 2010)
      Quick 1 minute video describing funding structures for public education in the United States

    3. Trading Schools (segment from Oprah Winfrey show) 
      Video comparison of two high schools with highly disparate funding and available resources– one in Chicago, one in the suburbs of Chicago. In the video two groups of high performing students switch schools to experience the other group’s school for the day.

    4. “The Mis-education of Monica and Karen” by Laura Hamilton and Elizabeth A. Armstrong in Contexts, Vol. 11, No. 4, pp. 22-27. (NOTE: This source is available via Ohiolink) 
      Abstract: Monica and Karen, two typical in-state students starting college at a mid-tier public university in the Midwest, encounter organizational arrangements best designed to serve affluent, out-of-state partiers who can afford to pay full freight. Sociologists Laura Hamilton and Elizabeth A. Armstrong discuss how Monica and Karen’s stories reveal the great mismatch between the needs of most college students and what many four-year residential universities offer.

    5. “Anti-Social Debts” by Andrew Ross in Contexts Vol. 11, Iss. 4, November 2012, pp. 28-32. (NOTE: This source is available via Ohiolink) The current student debt burden is an unsustainable outcome of the government’s abdication of responsibility to secure access to higher education. Andrew Ross analyses the factors behind the funding crisis and suggests some ways to reestablish an affordable education system.


    How did U.S. students perform on the most recent assessments?
    National Assessment of Education Progress data explorer is user friendly and allows users to create statistical tables, charts, and maps. Explore decades of assessment results, as well as information about factors that may be related to student learning.