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BBC Education

As anyone involved in UK education will know the pace of change over the past few years has been phenomenal - government, it seems, just can't resist the temptation to change things. It wouldn't be so bad if the changes actually produced discernable improvements but at least you can keep up-to-date with the latest initiatives and pronouncements courtesy of this news site.

John Taylor Gatto

John Gatto has some interesting - and controversial - views on education and on this site you'll find a range of educational resources (such as video and audio clips, selected articles and the like). There's some good stuff here (plus an awful lot of material that's neither interesting nor illuminating) so it's probably a case of wading through the dross to find the diamonds if you plan to use this material in class...

British Education Index

Hosted by Leeds University (it used to be called "Education Line"), the site offers a searchable database of "electronic texts" (University-speak for research papers posted on a Web site). "Sociology" revealed over 200 such texts and the site provides you with useful reference details of each paper (author, abstract, level, subject areas and the like). If you find one you like (and there are plenty pitched at A-level students) you can download the file in either HTML or Word format. This is a quite fantabulous resource and, if I had a "Site of the Month" award, this would win it (but since I don't, it hasn't).

Education Guardian

This is another part of the burgeoning "Guardian Unlimited" empire that's gradually (and quite deservedly) taking over the Web. This, as you might expect, deals with "Education" and, as you might also expect, it does it comprehensively and very, very, professionally. The site has loads of categories dealing with up-to-the-minute advice and information, as well as giving access to the Guardian's educational archive. The site's a mixture of links (Choosing a School, Homework Help and so forth) and articles that should probably be your first stop for current (and not-so-current) educational information.

Education World

 A very large general education site that contains a range of Sociology links grouped around Organisations, Journals and Newsgroups (just search on the word "sociology"). In addition, a social science section contains a range of lesson plans, but you need to keep in mind the fact that these are largely US orientated and, in the main, below A-level standard. Nevertheless, an interesting and potentially useful site to visit every now and again.

Institute of Education

A useful source of cutting-edge research into the educational system and behaviour, given that the site has a searchable database of publications. Much of the research material will only be of use to teachers, but some can be used as background material for coursework.

Sociology Alive!

Although Stephen Moore's "Sociology Alive!" is aimed at GCSE level (and this version - the 3rd edition published in 2001 - is a little long in the tooth) the full text - available through Google Books - is still a useful resource to have. While Moore has gone on to bigger, broader (and probably more lucrative) texts, selected parts of Sociology Alive! probably still have a place in the AS level classroom.  

Earlham Sociology

The general aim of Russall Haggar's site is "to provide a fairly comprehensive set of materials for several of the modules currently offered in the AQA AS and A2 Sociology specification", to which end it succeeds admirably. The site continues to grow with a range of new materials (teaching notes, PowerPoints, essays and assignments) for the sociology of education recently added. There are, of course, other goodies available, including extensive materials for areas like families and households, power and politics and social differentiation.

Ethnicity and Educational achievement

One segment in a BBC site that covers a wide range of "race related" issues. This page looks specifically  at the relationship between black ethnicities and educational achievement.

The Pygmalion effect

A simple, straightforward, page of notes on Rosenthal and Jacobson's research.

Post-Compulsory Education in Context

A complete book chapter by John Lea, this looks specifically at the New Vocationalism and the Widening Participation agenda.

The construction of the hidden curriculum

Research paper from 1998 looking at the hidden curriculum and it's relationship to different forms of assessment.

Twenty-five years of Learning to Labour

A 2003 interview with Paul Willis.

School Controversies: Self-Fulfilling Prophecies and Tracking

This is an online course "lesson" that looks at how self-fulfilling prophecies and tracking can be defined and evaluated in terms of their advantages and disadvantages, using a mix of text, graphics and video. The lesson seems to be part of a larger "sociology course" for which you have to pay - but this lesson is free.

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