• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Assess the view that subcultures are the key to underachievment in school

Extracts from this document...


Assess the view that pupil subcultures are the key to understanding educational underachievement. A subculture is a culture within a culture where a group develop distinctive norms and values that are different from those of the mainstream culture. Subcultures can exist in both a positive and negative way and during education these opposite subcultures are at their most noticeable. These two subculture s in school are called pro school subculture (positive) and an anti school subculture (negative) each sharing very different views of school. A pro school culture is a culture within the schools environment that agrees and bases their norms and values around the rules that are set by the school. This is generally the group that contains the high academic achievers within the school gaining the top grades. An anti school subculture is again a culture within the school environment but this subculture base there norms and values to contradict and deny the rules of the schooling environment. Evidence suggests that it is because of anti school subcultures schooling experiences under achievement. ...read more.


An example of this is labelling. The labelling theory was introduced by Becker and has been supported by Cicourel, Kitsuse and Hargreave's, as they also believe that people are labelled a lot within schooling environments. Beckers study of labelling suggest teachers within a class room label their students with either a positive or negative label very early on within their education. The teacher then treats them according to their label by using the hidden curriculum. The hidden curriculum is what we are taught in school and is not within the hidden curriculum. For example behaviour and manners. The teacher then constantly treats the children as their labels until the child becomes their label. This process of the child becoming their label is called the self-fulfilling prophecy. So if you are given a negative label you start behaving badly because of the way you are treated you begin to believe that you should act against the norms and values. Because they then become there negative label they are set and streamed into the bottom sets within subjects meaning they cannot achieve grades and don't achieve grades so they then become under achievers within education. ...read more.


For example he believed negative labelling would lead to the pupil self fulfilling that label and therefore get set and streamed into lower ability groups therefore meaning they will not gain the grades they are capable of. Therefore meaning that they are underachieving. In conclusion to this I feel that yes anti school subcultures are a key part of educational under achievement as they strive to break the rules of the schooling system. This then causes under achievement, as it is there subcultures norm to under achieve. So in this respect anti school sub cultures are one of the factors for under achievements within education but I feel there are also many other important contributions to this as well. For example I feel that teachers negatively labelling students also creates the self-fulfilling prophecy and then means there are more students likely to underachieve. Also I feel another contributing factor is setting and streaming as it limits the pupils maximum potential. So in conclusion I feel that sub cultures within schooling are a factor but there are many others that also affect underachievement on an equal basis. Chris Fox ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Sociological Differentiation & Stratification section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Sociological Differentiation & Stratification essays

  1. Gender, sub-cultures & subject choice.

    She concluded that it was down to specific gender roles, eg. biology is about living things - feminine concern whereas other sciences are more practical-based therefore more of masculine concern. Another set of relevant information is from 'DFEE - Department for Education & Employment' - 1998 Training & Education Stats.

  2. Is the Underachievement of Ethnic Minority Children due to a Racist School System?

    He stated that pupils of Bangladeshi origin, who tend to experience higher levels of poverty mostly under-perform. However there are studies, such as that done by Craft and Craft (1983) that found that Afro-Caribbean children attain significantly less than white working class children.

  1. Using information from the items and elsewhere, assess the extent to which pupil subcultures ...

    Students seem to achieve success in the eyes of their peers by not respecting teachers, messing about, arriving late, having fights, not turning up to lesson and  so on. This seems to be supported by Item B as it states that students are willing to fail exams in order to stay �cool�.

  2. Identity Paper

    They would cook, clean and wait on them hand and foot. Women were taught to entertain company, and care after the children; also similar to the "marianismo" term used to describe gender roles of the female in Hispanic cultures.ii Therefore, my father put forth those expectations on me in addition

  1. Two Cultures

    with also some other religions and each religion will pray according to their own beliefs.

  2. Does Gender Affect Student’s Performances At Key Stage 5 And Beyond?

    Boys also have a more enquiring nature; they are more "risk taking" and more willing to take part in lessons and practical work. Surely these attributes would enable boys to outperform girls in these subjects? Unfortunately this has not been the case, recent results show that girls may now be outperforming boys in both maths and science.

  1. Black Male perception, of Secondary School Attainment and Opportunities. "Explore reasons for the academic ...

    In modern day education issues around ethnicity are generally due to the gap in achievement. Most of the concerns expressed have been regarding Afro Caribbean males as they perform poorest compared to their ?opponents? (see DfES 2006 a/b) Achievement tables are now more aware the effect of the homogenisation of ethnic minorities under a single title as a race.

  2. Examine the view that the school is the most important factor in childrens achievement.

    David Hargreaves and Colin Lacey (1970) found that teachers had lower expectations of the lower band pupils and responded to them differently. This had a negative effect on the lower band pupils and they responded to this by being anti-social.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work