This paper examines arguments and evidence on whether academic school culture is effective in increasing global competitiveness with OECD nations
The current trend of standardized testing in OECD nations has provided significant information of which countries are excelling. The argument of whether standardized tests are counterintuitive in developing a school culture focused on academic attainment will also be explored. Through exposing cultural similarities and differences, speculation of whether school culture can increase a nations competitiveness with other OECD nations will be a focus. Through better understanding how and what drives school culture, a more detailed understanding of which specific social artifacts, beliefs, values and methods may transcend borders. The challenge will be drawing cultural connections and developing scenarios in which educated assumption can be used where data is lacking. The goal is to provide administrators with a better understanding of how to develop and sustain a school culture where academic attainment thrives.
1. Abstract – Outlining the research question and the purpose/rationale to be considered throughout the paper
Due to the global interconnectedness of the twenty-first century the competitive economic landscape continues to grow and morph. Competition in education is now more easily compared within OECD nations and more accountability and pressure are driving change to improve academic attainment. This paper will argue that an academically focused school culture can create a more economically and academically competitive nation. By focusing on improving academic attainment within schools, the transition from secondary education to the workplace is irrefutable. This is due to the increasing demands of specific knowledge sets required in the workplace. An increased connection with careers can be introduced during high school, such as internships and exploratory programs. Nation states can assist in the transitions from school to work by supporting programs that economies will ultimately become dependent on. For example, if robotics is an area where a nations infrastructure is lacking, supporting congruent programs within a school prepares a future workforce which in turn increases competitiveness. Cultural change within a school is indicative to assist the metamorphosis of students into competitive parts of a nation states success both academically and economically.
2. Definition of school culture
School culture is shared beliefs, perceptions, social-artifacts such as posters, attitudes for education and formal and informal rules.
The more fine-tuned a school culture is, the clearer expectations are transmitted both formally and informally amongst staff and students. Culture is the very thing that sets the norms and in turn leads to higher-academic attainment on exams such as OECDs PISA. What is not mentioned enough in academic literature is the connection between economies and schools. Schools however are benefactors and rely on global economies (Paul Moore). Moore discusses the importance of having a global economy, but not a global culture. This is a microcosm of what happens within schooling systems. No two students are the same, but a shared cultural understanding of what is required can be achieved.
a. What is school culture. How much do school cultures vary?
Similar to cultures throughout the world, school cultures vary widely. Many of these cultures are based on drastically different goal orientations.
b. What systems/cultures excel in testing, which do not, how they are measured.
c. Standardization of examinations, global competiveness.
d. Current trend in the increased OECD standardized testing, its purpose.
4. Literature Review What literature says about school culture, standardized testing impact on culture and nations.
5. Arguments against standardized testing and its impact on academic attainment.
6. Suggestions for further research on exploring how to utilize different school culture.
Further research is needed to reveal the direct connections of how school culture impacts nation states economies. What is know is that academically focused cultures produce higher-attainment. Longituidal studies that measure students economic output (earning power) could be compared amongst schools that are differentiated into higher and lower academically focused institutions. Students careers progression and earning power can be measured over a ten-year period. One can speculate the findings would highlight whether specific school cultures do increase economies competitiveness.
A further research project that is focused on entrepreneurship and the amount of foreign talent they attract could also be an interesting subsequent study. By exploring the correlation of opportunities and how they attract the worlds talent,
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