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SOCIAL CLASS DIFFERENCES IN POSING QUESTIONS FOR ANSWERS

W. P. Robinson and Susan J. Rackstraw
Sociology
Vol. 12, No. 2 (May 1978), pp. 265-280
Published by: Sage Publications, Ltd.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/42851994
Page Count: 16
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SOCIAL CLASS DIFFERENCES IN POSING QUESTIONS FOR ANSWERS
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Abstract

Two tasks were designed to probe the knowledge that middle class and working class ten year olds have of the logical and semantic connections between questions and their answers. In the first the children were required to write down questions that could have evoked the 'answers' with which they were provided. Compared with their middle class peers, working class boys supplied more questions that could be classified as inappropriate in specifiable ways; differences for girls were much attenuated. In the second task the children had to generate questions that would function to elicit prescribed types of information. Again working class boys were less proficient than middle class boys, with the girls showing fewer differences. The results were interpreted within Bernstein's theoretical framework.

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