The economic factors are insufficient for explaining the gap in the academic achievements of children from different social classes. Parent involvement in cultural activities is one of the important factors that have an impact on students’ educational attainment. According to Bourdieu’s theory of cultural capital, the individual’s prior experience can influence the readiness to participate in cultural activities (Lee & Bowen, 2003, p. 197). This paper will investigate whether the level of parents’ education as a part of their prior experience has an impact on their participation in cultural activities.
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To address the problem of parents’ involvement in cultural activities, this paper will investigate the independent variable of parents’ education level and the dependent variable of parents’ participation in cultural activities.
Whereas parents’ involvement is significant for students’ academic success, the level of education as potentially one of the underlying causes of parents’ more or less frequent attendance of school meetings and volunteering deserves serious consideration. After establishing the relationship between the parents’ education and their participation in cultural activities, educators would be able to better understand the behavior of students and their parents. Also, paying attention to the levels of parents’ education, teachers will be able to adopt appropriate communication strategies and assist parents in overcoming their difficulties.
Bourdieu’s theory of cultural capital can appropriately frame this discussion. The basic assumption, made by the French sociologist, Pierre Bourdieu, was that parent educational involvement practices play an important role in students’ academic progress (Lee & Bowen, 2003, p. 197). The concepts of social and cultural capital were coined by the sociologist for explaining the contextual influences affecting children’s development. In that regard, the levels of parents’ education, as the independent variable addressed in this study, are a part of social and cultural capital in the parent-school system.
This primary quantitative research will reveal whether parents’ education levels should be taken into account in the process of parent-school interaction or not. If there is a statistically significant relationship between the dependent and independent variables, the research problems will be answered positively (Wolfer & Jacoby, 2007).
The main hypothesis for this study is that there is a statistically significant relationship between parents’ education levels and their participation in cultural activities. The null hypothesis is that there is no statistically significant relationship between parents’ education levels and their participation in cultural activities.
The method of the survey will be used for gathering the data on the two variables and establishing the relationship between them if any. The quantitative method will be used for assessing the relationship between the levels of parents’ education and their involvement in cultural interactions. The convenience sampling will be used for this survey, and parents of children from one school will be selected for participating in this survey.
Notably, these parents should be selected to represent different social and ethnic groups. Still, convenient sampling would be the main limitation in the design of this study which can result in certain bias. However, convenient sampling is the most appropriate and cost-effective solution for this study. After giving their consent to participating in the survey and learning about the main goals of this study, parents will need to answer several questions, concerning the number of hours they spend a week attending school meetings and assisting their children in doing home assignments.
Lee, J. & Bowen, N. (2003). Parent involvement, cultural capital, and the achievement gap among elementary school children. American Educational Research Journal, 43(2), 193 – 218.
Wolfer, L. & Jacoby, J. (2007). Real research: Conducting and evaluating research in the social sciences. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.