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The social function and meaning of nonformal education: a study of official community education programmes in the state of Mexico.

Pieck Gochicoa, Enrique. (1993) The social function and meaning of nonformal education: a study of official community education programmes in the state of Mexico. PhD thesis, Institute of Education, University of London.

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Abstract

The purpose of the thesis is to examine the social control and reproduction functions of what is known as nonformal education in the State of Mexico (Mexico). As such it is concerned with analysing what Bernstein calls the coding characteristics of the educational process and how this process is experienced by the participants and can reinforce their 'social positioning' in their society. To place the study in its context there is an initial consideration of the conditions in which nonformal education emerged in Latin America, followed by a critical assessment of its functions; new perspectives for the analysis of this form of education are examined. To set the analysis in its regional context a description of the development of nonformal education at both national and regional levels is provided. Then the definition, aims, and purposes of community education programmes are analyzed. A theoretical and conceptual framework is constructed to analyze the social control and reproduction functions of education; here emphasis is placed on Bernstein's sociolinguistic theory of cultural transmission. This is followed by a sociological appraisal of community education's underlying or invisible features. In the light of the above the methodological chapter presents the concepts and techniques which allowed us to examine the educational process and participants' viewpoint. A qualitative analysis was employed in order to account for the participants' perspective. It was supported by non-structured interviews and participant observation. Empirical work was carried out in four community education programmes in the State of Mexico. Three areas were considered during the field research: a) the educational process (curriculum, pedagogy and evaluation); b) teachers and students' motives for taking part in courses; c) the meanings assigned by participants to the courses as a result of their participation in and experience of the educational process. Data is discussed in terms of the basic concepts of the thesis: social positioning, control and reproduction. The main conclusion refers to the social control and reproduction functions of community education programmes resulting from participants overall exposure to educational institutions and practices. This, it is argued, is achieved through three basic processes: 1) the social positioning of participants which arises as a result of their identification with the educational coding; 2) the lowering of participants' expectations as a consequence of the marginal and marginalising characteristics of the educational process they undergo; 3) the very fact that the courses response to the motivations and satisfy the interests of the participants.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Controlled Keywords: Mexico,Community education,Nonformal education,Latin America,Sociology of education,Rural education,Community development
Subjects: Departments > Education Foundations and Policy Studies
Depositing User: Mr Andrew Welshman
Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2014 16:47
Last Modified: 23 Mar 2015 11:25
View Record in Library Catalogue: http://ioe.sirsidynix.net.uk/uhtbin/cgisirsi/x/0/0/5/3?searchdata1=a129944{CKEY}
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