Explaining secondary effects of families' social class position : an empirical test of the Breen-Goldthorpe model of educational attainment


Stocké, Volker


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URL: https://ub-madoc.bib.uni-mannheim.de/2600
URN: urn:nbn:de:bsz:180-madoc-26003
Document Type: Working paper
Year of publication: 2006
The title of a journal, publication series: Rationalitätskonzepte, Entscheidungsverhalten und ökonomische Modellierung
Volume: 06-07
Place of publication: Mannheim
Publication language: English
Institution: School of Law and Economics > Sonstige - Fakultät für Rechtswissenschaft und Volkswirtschaftslehre
MADOC publication series: Sonderforschungsbereich 504 > Rationalitätskonzepte, Entscheidungsverhalten und ökonomische Modellierung (Laufzeit 1997 - 2008)
Subject: 300 Social sciences, sociology, anthropology
Subject headings (SWD): Deutschland , Bildungsniveau , Familiensoziologie , Soziale Schichtung , Schätzung
Abstract: This article tests whether the Breen-Goldthorpe model offers an empirically valid prediction of educational decisions and a complete explanation of social class hereon. This is done using data from a panel study with families who decided about the secondary school tracks for their children in Germany. We analyzed firstly whether class differences in the costs, success probabilities and returns from status maintenance, which parents associate with educational options, are created by differences in the families’ objective opportunities and constraints. Consistent with theoretical expectations, we found class effects on the parents’ subjective beliefs and evaluations, which were due to differences in available economic resources and the children’s proven academic ability. We tested secondly the prediction that secondary school choice and class differences herein are the result of cost-benefit considerations. Whereas the subjective beliefs about how likely the children are in the position to complete educational degrees and the motive to maintain the families’ social status proved to be strong predictors for educational decisions, the anticipated costs of educational investments were found to be irrelevant. Inconsistent with predictions, the direct effects of social class on educational decisions were not explained by the theoretically predicted factors.
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Stocké, Volker (2006) Explaining secondary effects of families' social class position : an empirical test of the Breen-Goldthorpe model of educational attainment. Open Access Rationalitätskonzepte, Entscheidungsverhalten und ökonomische Modellierung Mannheim 06-07 [Working paper]
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