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Functionalist Sociology Essay
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| Words: 1213 | Submitted: 14-Apr-2011
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DescriptionEssay about Functionalists
Functionalism and New Right
Social mobility is how much an individual has the ability to change status e.g. class. Thus upwardly mobile refers to the individual being able to move up in social class. Working-Middle class, Middle-Upper class.
One function is socialisation, after the child has been socialised to some extent at home, they are sent to school where they will then learn all the necessary norms and values to fit in with society. Another function is to teach them the skills necessary for life in the future e.g. Literacy, Numeracy and more job-specific skills. The third role functionalists is the allocation of roles in society, this means that each individual will have qualifications most relevant to the job they are interested in pursuing.
The new right and functionalists are similar because they are both based on consensus. New right agree with functionalists in that they believe that society should be capitalist and education should operate to serve the needs of capitalism but in the 70s and 80s the new right thought that the state education was inefficient in meeting these needs. The new right believed that people are best left to meet their own needs and that any intervention from state e.g. welfare benefits etc should be avoided. They believe that the best way to achieve this is through marketisation of education; Marketisation of education is treating the schools/colleges more like a business with all of them aiming to get the best results in order to get more pupils and therefore more money and so on. The new right believe that this will raise the quality of teaching in schools as the management will make sure the teachers are teaching properly and the students are learning properly. Marketising education will cause the schools to compete against each other and produce the best grades they can thus attracting more students. The parents of the future students can find a league table in newspapers and on the internet showing how each school is performing and naturally each parent is going to aim for the highest rated school possible. Functionalists have very similar views to the new right. They both believe that some people are more naturally talented than others and therefore they believe that each individual should have the same opportunities despite their background (Meritocracy). Meritocracy is the belief that everyone should have the same opportunities as people with lots of money. Material deprivation is the main reason why new right prefer meritocracy because people with more money were getting better opportunities and those with less money. Marketisation would also mean that each school is more independent in that it takes control over finance, staffing and school policy thus giving ...
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