Using the power of research to inform ICT integration in education

Posts tagged ‘habitus’

What are parents’ perspectives on technology and children’s learning in the home? Habitus and social class.

S. Hollingworth, A. Mansaray, K. Allen, A. Rose, (2011) “Parents’ perspectives on technology and children’s learning in the home: social class and the role of the habitus”, Journal of Computer Assisted Learning Volume 27, Issue 4, pages 347–360, August 2011

Sociologists of education highlight that parent’s ability to engage with their children’s education and learning is not a straightforward issue. Drawing on the work of Pierre Bourdieu, this paper attempts to open up a space for examination of the differential experiences of parents from different social class backgrounds, of technology in the home, and how this informs the potential they see for family learning using technology. We use Bourdieu’s concepts of ‘cultural and economic capital’ and ‘habitus’ to explore several themes. Firstly, the paper explores the impact of material inequalities of access on families and how this structures parental engagement with technology in relation to their children’s schooling; secondly, how the harms and risks of technology are differentially experienced, negotiated and managed by parents from different social class backgrounds – with varying amounts of social and cultural resources available to them; thirdly, through discussion of the ‘generation gap’, we examine the significance of the parents’ working lives (in terms of the privileged forms of engagement with technology, which professional employment increasingly requires and facilitates) in shaping parents’ own relationships to education and learning.

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What do pianos tell us about computers and cultural capital?

Seiter, E. (2008). Practicing at Home: Computers, Pianos, and Cultural Capital. Digital youth innovation and the unexpected (pp. 27-52). The MIT Press.

Bourdieu focused attention on the role of education and the influence of status distinctions on the selection and valorization of particular forms of cultural capital. Although Bourdieu did not write about digital media, he was a keen observer of status distinctions in education and how these translate into job markets. Through an extended analogy between learning the piano and learning the computer, I demonstrate Bourdieu’s relevance for an expanded vision of digital literacy one that would forefront the material and social inequalities in U.S. domestic Internet access and in public education. High Tech High School, supported by the Gates Foundation, provides a case of why it is important to examine current digital pedagogy in terms of unarticulated and implicit models of entrepreneurial labor, both because these set up unrealistic expectations and because they can express corporate norms rather than critical pedagogy.

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