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Education Widens Social and Gender Gap in Political Engagement: Report

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Young people improve access to civic activities in school to address social and gender gaps in political engagement that emerge during adolescence, according to new report by researchers from UCL, University of Roehampton and University of Southampton need to do it.

The report, released today and funded by the Nuffield Foundation, reveals a widening gender gap in political interest among 16- to 30-year-olds. 16 and 30 years old.

At age 16, about one in four (23%) girls were more likely to report being fairly or very interested in politics, compared to 28% for boys. By age 30, this gap had widened to just under one in three women (29%) and more than half (52%) in men.

When disaggregating these growth differences by highest qualification at age 25, the authors found that women with lower-level and upper-secondary occupational qualifications (such as Btech) grew significantly more than all other groups in the study. I have found the rate to be low. In fact, among women with an upper secondary vocational qualification at age 25, 36% said they were fairly or very interested in politics between the ages of 16 and her 30s. from 19% of her. level), she increased from 24% to 39% during this time.

The same contrasting trends were not seen for men, with greater political interest between the ages of 16 and 30, regardless of level or type of entitlement.

However, the authors found that differences in educational pathways after age 16 could only partially explain this widening gender gap, and that other factors could not explain this widening gap at all.

Co-author Dr. Nicola Pensiero (University of Southampton) said: In this regard, it is important to pay special attention to gender-segregated courses, such as Care, Hospitality and Beauty, which mainly attract girls. ”

Co-author Professor Jan Germen Janmaat (IOE, UCL School of Education and Sociology) adds: .”

To establish their findings, the team used data from the UK Household Panel Study, Understanding Society, and the Civic Education Longitudinal Study (CELS) to examine the social impact of political engagement during adolescence and early adulthood. investigated the development of social and gender inequalities.

Researchers used parents’ education as an indicator of social background and measured political engagement with questions about voting intentions, political party support, and political interest, ranking them on several scales.

The authors then used a variety of methods to investigate how social disparities in political engagement develop during adolescence and early adulthood and which educational factors account for this.

They found that the effect of parental education on a child’s level of political engagement varied between ages 11 and 15.

Despite having the same level of political interest at age 11, children from lower-educated households had lower levels of political interest between ages 11 and 15, averaging 1.37 on a 3-point scale. to 1.26. Interested”, 3 stands for “Very Interested”. However, the political interests of educated families remained unchanged. All groups showed increased willingness to vote in national elections, but this rose much faster among children from well-educated families. This also shows that social inequalities are growing.

Researchers have found that school can exacerbate this gap, with school factors such as social makeup, political activism, and an open atmosphere for classroom discussion explaining almost all of this gap. I noticed that there is

They found that children with well-educated parents had higher levels of participation in civic learning opportunities, such as school political activities and classroom discussions about political and social issues. Participation in these occasions is associated with a surge of political interest.

The authors also point out other important implications for educational policy and practice.

“Our findings suggest that early adolescence is a critical period for the emergence of social gaps in political engagement,” said Professor Janmaat. Educational conditions for education are an important factor that can explain this widening gap.”

Co-author Professor Bryony Hoskins (University of Roehampton) said, “Schools have effectively implemented initiatives to provide children from disadvantaged backgrounds with equal access to civic learning opportunities and unintentionally It is important to be able to counter existing processes that exclude children from learning, so teachers need to do more: play an active role in guiding and promoting more equitable participation.”

Josh Hillman (Nuffield Foundation) says: Preparing and empowering all young people to participate in the political system is essential to prevent a decline in trust in public institutions and promote political engagement. ”

For more information:
Social inequalities in educational trajectory and political engagement after age 16: … Political engagement

Courtesy of University College London

Quote: Education Widens Social and Gender Gap in Political Engagement: Report (9 December 2022) to be published on 10 December 2022 at Retrieved from social-gender-gaps-political.html

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