Topics: Sociology, Capitalism, School Pages: 2 (772 words) Published: April 19, 2015


They look at all the positive sides of education and benefits. They believe that every institution in society performs one function or the other in order to help society run smoothly. Durkheim (1925) – he saw education as a transmission of society’s norms and values. It helps to unite and creates a sense of belonging, which he sees as social solidarity. We are taught subjects like history in order to learn more about our society. He saw schools as society in miniature, which helps us to interact with others, and prepares us for later life. School also teaches us specific skills needed in the industrial society, which can’t be taught by parents. Parsons (1961) - Education has 3 main functions:

A bridge between the family and wider society
Socializes children into the basic values of society
Selects people for their future roles in society
He believes that education makes the transition from the family to society as a whole possible by getting people used to the universalistic values and achieved status. It makes us believe in equality and individual achievement. The exam system encourages these values because it judges people fairly and motivates people to be successful Davis & Moore (1945) – They view education as a means of role allocation. It sifts and sorts people according to their abilities so that the most able gain high qualifications and progress to do functionally important jobs. The most important jobs are highly rewarded, thereby motivating the able and talented to work harder. They see education as meritocratic. That is, people are judged according to their ability and effort rather than who they are.

Marxists argue that it benefits the ruling class. They see it as promoting the values of powerful groups. Hargreaves (1982) believes it promotes competition and individualism rather than shared values. Feminism sees it as benefitting men.

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