This project aims at furthering our understanding of 1) what psychological and structural factors underlie the legitimacy conferred to educational systems 2) how stratification in educational system is related to individuals’ perceptions and beliefs about educational inequalities.
In other words, this project investigates if stratification in educational systems is taken for granted by individuals and further legitimized. These insights could potentially be informative to understand more generally why certain properties of educational systems are maintained even if they appear ineffective for promoting equal opportunities.
We investigate this question by matching a European national educational reform dataset on tracking age dating back to 1929 to 4 waves of the International Social Survey Programme (1987, 1992, 1999, 2009) that include information about the public’s perception of education-based meritocracy and support for education as a basis for social stratification. By using these datasets, we can study whether individual experiences of early vs. later tracking within a country (as well as individual attained level of education) are associated to differences in perceptions and beliefs about educational system and educational inequalities.