Flashcards in Methods In Context - Experiments Deck (22)
What are the 5 issues sociologists study?
-pupils self concepts
-self fulfilling prophecy
What 3 sociologists did lab experiments on teachers expectations?
-Harvey & Slatin (1976)
-Charkin et al (1975)
What did Harvey and Slatin do a study on in 1976?
-examined whether teachers has preconceived ideas about pupils of different social class
How did Harvey and Slatin do there lab experiment on teachers expectations?
Used a sample of 96 teachers
-each teacher was shown 18 pictures of children from different social classes
-in order to control variables, the photographs were equally divided in terms of gender and ethnicity- teachers were asked to rate the children on their performance, parental attitudes to education
What did Harvey and Slatin find?
Found that lower class children were rated less favourably, especially by more experienced teachers
-the study indicates that's teachers label pupils from different social classes and use these labels to pre-judge pupils potential
Explain Charkin et al's experiment in 1975
Used a sample of 48 university students who each taught a lesson to a 10 year old boy
-1/3(high expectancy group) was told the boy was highly motivated and intelligent
-1/3(low expectancy group) was told the boy was unmotivated with a low IQ
-1/3 were given no information
What did Charkin et al find?
High expectancy group made more eye contact and gave a more encouraging body language
Explain Masons study in 1973
Looked at whether negative or positive expectations had the greater effect
-teachers were given positive, negative or neutral reports on a pupil - teachers then observed video recordings of the pupil taking a test watching to see if any errors were made
-finally, they were asked to predict the the pupils end of year attachment
What did Mason find?
That the negative reports had a much greater impact than the positive ones on the teachers expectations
Give ethical issues of using lab experiments in this context
-lab experiments that do not involve real people have fewer ethical issues than those that do (neither mason nor Harvey & Slatin used real pupils -no child suffered any negative impacts) (however others such as Charkin et al used real people -raising ethical issues)
-young peoples vulnerability and their more limited ability to understand what is happening means that there are greater problems of deception, lack of informed consent and psychological damage
Explain how lab experiments in this context can create a narrow focus
-researchers usually only examine 1 specific aspect of teachers expectations such as body language -this is useful as it allows the researchers to isolate and examine this variable thoroughly
-however, This means that teacher expectations are not seen within the wider process of labelling and the self fulfilling prophecy
Explain the practical issues when using lab experiments when in this context
-schools are large, complex institutions in which many variables may affect teachers expectations
-it is impossible to identify and control all the variables that might exert an influence on teachers expectations
-sociologists are often interested in the role of large scale social factors and processes Such as the impact of government policies on educational achievement, which can be studied in small scale lab experiments
Explain how artificiality occurs when using lab experiments in this context
-the artificiality of lab experiments may mean that they tell us little about the world of education
-Charkin used uni students rather than teachers
-Harvey and Slatin used photographs instead of real pupils
-it is unlikely uni students behave in the same way as experiences teachers
Who used a field experiment to study teachers expectations?
Rosenthal and Jacobson (1968)
What does 'Pygmalion in the classroom' mean?
Illustrates the difficulties of using field experiments to study teachers expectations
What was the process of Rosenthal and Jacobsons experiment?
Carried out a fake test (IQ test) to identify 'spurters' however pupils were randomly selected
What was the aim of Rosenthal and Jacobsons field experiment?
-to plant in the kinds of the teachers a particular set of expectations about their pupils
-to see if this had any effects on pupils performance
What happened 8 months later in the Rosenthal and Jacobson field experiments?
All pupils were retested 8 months later and then again after a further year. First 8 months pupils gained an average 8 IQ points, but sputters gained 12 points
Explain the ethical issues of using field experiments in this context
-field experiments in educational settings pose major ethical problems e.g. Rosenthal & Jacobsons experiment means those not identified as spurters may have been put back a set/year
-children have more rights now compared to the 1960s
-field experiments work best when those involved are unaware that they're being observed- yet requires deception
Explain the reliability of using field experiments in this context
-Rosenthal & Jacobsons research design was relatively simple and therefore easy to repeat - within 5 years, the study has been repeated no less than 242 times
-however due to different factors including age of pupils, teaching styles and so on, it's unlikely the original could be replicated exactly
Explain the validity of field experiments in this context
-Rosenthal & Jacobson claimed that teachers expectations were passed on through differences in the way they interacted with pupils -however the researcher did not carry out any observation of classroom interactions, so they had no data to support this claim