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Does social justice count?: 'Lived democracy' in mathematics classes in diverse Swedish upper secondary programmes
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of applied educational science.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3910-0319
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of applied educational science.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3737-3244
2016 (English)In: Journal of Curriculum Studies, ISSN 0022-0272, E-ISSN 1366-5839Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

This article analyses what students attending four Swedish upper secondary school programmes with different social class profiles tried and wanted to influence in relation to mathematics teachers' pedagogic practice and responses during the year 2008/9. The theoretical framework is based on Bernstein's theories regarding power and control. The analyses draw on ethnographic observations of classes taking the Natural Science and Social Science academic programmes, and the Vehicle and Child & Recreation vocational programmes, at two Swedish upper secondary schools. Students attending different programmes tried to influence the teaching. However, what the students taking the academic and vocational programmes were able to influence considerably differed. Generally the vocational students exerted influence more successfully when they wanted to reduce the pace and difficulty of teaching, than when they wished to get more out of their education, while the opposite applied to the academic, especially Natural Science, students. Thus, the power relations reflected the programmes' social class profiles and the students' expected positions in society, despite policies at the time to promote democracy and reduce social reproduction in education. The findings support the importance of analysing not only students' voices, but also their voices in relation to the pedagogic practice they encounter.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2016.
Keyword [en]
Student participation, teacher response, vocational education, social stratification
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
educational work
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-114680DOI: 10.1080/00220272.2016.1138326OAI: diva2:897513
Swedish Research Council, Dnr 2006-23855-40762-27.
Available from: 2016-01-25 Created: 2016-01-25 Last updated: 2016-09-02

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Hjelmér, CarinaRosvall, Per-Åke
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