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Impact of Social Class on Arts Education in Private Pre-Schools in China

Research Proposal on the Impact of Social Class on Arts Education in Private Pre-Schools in China

INTRODUCTION

Purpose of the research

The purpose of the research will mainly focus on art education in preschools in China. Art education is believed to contribute to the intellectual development, stimulates creative thinking and helps develop communication and self-expression among children. Regarding the significance of art education in preschools, the main challenge in providing art education for children relates to resources needed.

1.2 Research context

This study will examine the impact of social class on arts education in two preschools in China. The aim of this research will to explore the ways in which the social class of the parent affects art education in private preschools. The main elements will be art education in preschools and the role of parents as influenced by their social class.

Specific objectives

  1. To identify the state of art education in private preschools in China
  2. To investigate the influence of social class on art education in private preschools in China
  3. To recommend measures for effective provision of arts education in private preschools in China

Research questions

  1. What is the state of arts education in private preschools in China?
  2. What is the impact of social class impact on art education in private preschools in China?
  3. What measures can be taken to improve art education in private preschools China?

Significance of the research

This research will fill an important literature gap in two areas: provision of arts education in preschools and the impact of social class on education quality.

LITERATURE REVIEW

The perceived position a person occupies in the social hierarchy shapes their consumption choices significantly. Some of the class indicators such as income, occupation, and education level attained is expected to influence individuals’ lifestyle and behaviors.

In China the marketization of education has been emerging. To a certain degree, parents are main consumers in the education market. Hence, parents across different social class may have different perspectives in selecting schools in a market-based education system.

Chinese policymakers have been showing interest in the development of preschool education. By 2017, China had established around 250 thousand kindergartens, and the number of enrolled kids has achieved 46million. However, it was revealed that the enrolment rate remains around 75%, that is to say, some kids still cannot attend preschool education. In response to this situation, the central government plans to increase the enrolment rate to 85% in preschool education by 2020.

Social class has originally been associated with prestige borne out of certain factors such as behaviour, style and common experiences such as education and profession. But this would be associated with the emergence of government programmes that encourage provision of education opportunities across social classes. This means that indicators such as education are no longer effective in identifying social classes.

When addressing the question of social class and preschool education, the question will to a great extent be on parents and the choices they make for their children. In 2017, it was estimated that 46million children are taken through formal preschool education (National Bureau of Statistics of the People’s Republic of China, 2017). The main factors considered include convenience, cost, and quality of education.

The literature from several renown authors provides a clear background for the rationale for offering arts education to children. This has been justified from the perspective of the benefits it has for child development in terms of intellectual, emotional and social benefits. The dimension of the social class and its possible influence on childhood education has also been brought up. Class characteristics such as income level and education are expected to play a significant role. There’s however a literature gap in relation with preschool arts education. None of the studies referred to so far address the influence of social class on arts education. This is the literature gap to be filled in this research.

METHODOLOGY

The methodology outlines the processes that will be used to collect and analyse data.

Research philosophy

This research will adopt interpretivism as its philosophy. Interpretivism deals with perceptions of people’s actions, experiences, and points of view. It focuses on socially constructed realities where it acknowledges the possibility of each person embracing a unique understanding of the world around them.

Research approach

The approach will be inductive. An inductive approach is where observations are made or data is reviewed first. The emerging patterns during the analysis are then taken note of and theories or hypotheses formed. The contrasting approach (deductive) would involve the researcher drawing from previous research to identify theories and hypotheses which are then tested to prove whether they are applicable.

 Population and sample

The target population will be the school community of two selected kindergartens in Beijing. This includes the teaching fraternity as well as the parents. The estimated population size was 200. The population will be selected on the basis that it contains persons that are most closely affected by the research; hence most suitable in providing the information needed.Samples are smaller portions of the population that are expected to be able to generate the same knowledge as would be generated in that population. For this research, a limited sample of 10 will be selected.

Sampling method

The sampling method that will be used is an interview. It can be either random, systematic, convenience or even purposive; depending on its perceived appropriateness. For this research, sampling will be purposive. In purposive sampling, the judgment of the researcher is the main determinant of which members of the population get selected to take part in the research.

 Data collection

Data collection will be through semi-structured interviews. With semi-structured interviews, the researcher prepares a general guideline which outlines the main areas to be covered. However, the order of questions and content will be varied in the course of the interview; provided the main theme areas have been covered effectively.

Data collection process

The target kindergartens will be identified, then embarked on a process of preliminary fact finding about that school. This will be done through an informal inquiry process with members of the administration. From this, the target interviewees will identified through the purposive sampling approach.

Data analysis

Data analysis will be done qualitatively. Codes or key phrases will be identified relating to each research question.

Ethical considerations

This research will conform to the recommended ethics in social research.

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