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Do classrooms matter? Pass rates, achievement and classroom procedures: a quanti-qualitative study.

Lucas, Liney Orlandina (1990) Do classrooms matter? Pass rates, achievement and classroom procedures: a quanti-qualitative study. PhD thesis, Institute of Education, University of London.

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Abstract

Urban upper primary schools in Espirito Santo are better staffed and equipped than rural schools yet their "pass rates" are lower. Given evidence that: (a) urban areas are more developed than rural areas, (b) development and educational quality correlate positively, (c) school characteristics account for about 80 percent of the variation in pupil achievement in less developed countries, and (d) learning assessment in Brazil is not centralized, the reported "pass rates" are paradoxical and call for clarification. This is the problem this thesis approaches from a quanti-qualitative focus. Survey data on achievement scores, school results and the correlations between these measures of pupil attainments indicate that "pass rates" enmesh teachers' set learning goals. High school results / lower achievement scores in rural areas, which lack significant correlations, suggest lower quality education geared towards rote-learning. Lower school results / higher achievement scores in urban areas, with weak-moderate positive correlations signal more complex cognitive demands and improvement of educational quality through content understanding. Therefore, "pass rates" have specific meanings and are not suitable as comparison of performance of different schools. The ethnography of an urban school illuminates the survey findings and unveil the meaning of "pass rates" from the viewpoint of "successful" classroom practices. In a context of similar qualifications teachers share a progressive pedagogical discourse but their classroom practices portray diversity of educational quality and corresponding learning achievement standards. Teaching approaches, displayed in a typology (based in textbook use and pupils participation in the lesson), represent a continuum from rote-learning to the recreation of knowledge. Options for teaching approaches are compromises between educational ideals and existing constraints. These include teachers' competence (rooted in their background), the ethos and culture of the school, and external demands on schooling. Pupils' responses to teaching approaches embody their appraisal of the process, the subjectmatter, and prevailing teacher-pupil affective ties. Ultimately learning outcomes expressed through "pass rates" represent distinctive teaching practices and learning results.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Subjects: Departments > Lifelong and Comparative Education
Depositing User: Mr Andrew Welshman
Date Deposited: 02 May 2014 11:58
Last Modified: 27 Oct 2015 11:40
View Record in Library Catalogue: http://ioe.sirsidynix.net.uk/uhtbin/cgisirsi/x/0/0/5/3?searchdata1=a121431{CKEY}
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