A number of foreign studies in family-school relationships have shown that effective parent-school interaction is a crucial factor of parental school involvement, which, in its turn, has a positive impact on the whole schooling process. In Russia, there is little empirical data on the communication between parents and schools. The article describes the findings of an exploratory research that involved school administrators and parents of students at different levels of school education ( elementary, middle and high school) in a megalopolis of the Central Federal District. Interviews with parents and school representatives as well as parent questionnaire results are used to describe the most popular ways in which parents interact with schools, the main problems they encounter in such interaction, and the degree of parental involvement in school life. Direct contact with teachers is found to be the most efficient channel of parent–school communication. Parents see the main communication problems in disagreement about instruction and education issues and in the disengagement of schools or individual teachers. These problems become more acute in middle and high school. On the whole, the existing level of parental involvement in school is measured as low in this study.
Doctoral education in Russia is characterized by high drop-out rates. Many experts associate this problem with the low financial support of PhD students and their need to find employment during education process. However, the current discussion mainly relies not on the research data, but on expert opinions based on scanty statistics or on the individual cases. Based on a 2016 survey of PhD students of the leading Russian universities the authors assess the scope and types of employment of postgraduates, as well as the experience of those PhD students, who balance study time with work. The current position, work duties and workload of PhD students were analyzed in regard to learning experience perception and career prospects they have. The authors conclude that the balancing study and work may benefit to PhD student education process and professional experience, but only in case when current work duties correspond to the thesis topic. The challenges of balancing study and work are highlighted. The results can be useful for developing measures to reform doctoral education both at the university and at the state level.
A sample of 295 teachers from six educational institutions in the town of Kolpino (Kolpino District, St. Petersburg) is used to explore school teachers’ perception of talent management policies and practices as elements of the school’s organizational culture and to analyze linkages between such practices and teachers’ organizational commitment. The study relied on the Organizational Commitment Questionnaire (OCQ) developed by Lyman W. Porter and the new Talent Management in Education questionnaire by Brent Davies and Barbara J. Davies. The latter was adapted for the Russian sample, evidence of the method’s reliability and construct validity being provided in the article. Results show that organizational commitment of teachers is higher in schools where leaders foster professional development, collaboration and collegial decision making. Years of teaching experience do not affect organizational commitment, but younger teachers are more committed to their schools than their older colleagues. Teacher commitment to educational institutions was also found to be predicted by whether teachers perceive talent management practices as elements of the school’s organizational culture.
Skill mismatch implies discrepancy between the skills of job candidates or employed workers and job requirements. Types of mismatch are identified based on three criteria: quality of mismatch (surplus vs shortage), reporting party (employer vs worker/candidate), and type of skills (cognitive vs technical). Differences in types of skill mismatch account for considerable variation in qualitative interpretation and quantitative measurement. The problem of skill mismatch has been widely debated across the OECD countries, yet it remains understudied in Russian research literature. The issue raises concerns among education and labor market researchers as well as practitioners, so this article analyzes the available findings from the prospective of their potential use by educational institutions being the key consumers of data on skill mismatch and the ones that should tackle the problem. Five types of skill mismatch are identified, along with the specific challenges of measurement and interpretation. The article describes three methods of skill mismatch measurement to be selected as a function of which type of skill supply and demand data is used: indirect, objective direct, and subjective direct measurement. It also classifies methods of measuring the cognitive skills gap in the major cross-national studies: PIAAC, STEP, and OECD Skills for Jobs Database. It transpires that cross-national comparisons of cognitive skills mismatch mostly have to use a mixed approach due to limitations typical of cross-country research, such as the lack of objective data on skills demand and relying on subjective or indirect data alone. For this reason, the results of most cross-national skills m
This study is part of the OECD Center for Educational Research and Innovation’s project Teaching, Assessing and Learning Creative and Critical Thinking Skills in Education and uses action research methodology. It seeks to elaborate a teaching format to develop 21st century skills within the framework of a particular school subject, making participation in such classes available for as many teachers and students as possible. The study puts forward an approach to designing contextual problems that students are offered to solve collaboratively in the classroom. Key components of such assignments are described, which allow for fostering creativity within specific school subject domains. The results from testing the validity of such assignments are presented. Accessibility of subject-specific teaching practices enhancing 21st century skills is assessed by analyzing the outcomes of focus groups consisting of teachers and students who participated in the assignment validity assessment.
Sixty-two semi-structured interviews with students of grades 9–11 in 15 schools and a survey of 2,376 ninth-graders from 55 schools were used to identify Russian teenagers’ perceptions of popularity and assess gender differences in the factors of popularity. It transpires that 40–50% of school students reject the very notion of “popular” as inequality-inducing. Such attitudes are probably in coherence with collectivistic values that are prevalent in Russian society as opposed to individualistic ones. Students perceived as popular by their peers are characterized as exhibiting prosocial behavior. “The life and soul of the party” was the most frequent characteristic of popular teenagers used in students’ descriptions; “attractive”, “very smart” and “acknowledges no authority” were mentioned slightly less often. Girls are more likely to be classified as popular for their good-looking appearance and sense of style, while boys are revered for sports achievements, arguments with teachers, independence and ability to stand up for themselves. Intellect and sociability are regarded as equally strong factors of popularity for both boys and girls. High status in a class is associated with social approval and support, academic achievements and prosocial behavior. Russian school students differ from their Western peers in their notion and perceptions of popularity.
Leo Tolstoy and Max Weber on value neutrality of university research The problem of value neutrality of science is considered on the basis of works by Leo Tolstoy and Max Weber. In the first part of the article, the statements on the value neutrality of scientific knowledge and university teaching by Weber and Tolstoy are made explicit and analyzed in a comparative perspective. In the second part, the central problem of Tolstoy and Weber, that is, a rational choice of the value paradigm, is studied systematically. Differences in their assumptions and conclusions are shown. In the third part, a historical commentary to the context of Tolstoys and Webers works is given. The works are treated as episodes in a wider modern history of the value neutralization of the scientific knowledge and university teaching. The specifics of this process are tightly connected with the fundamental principles of the modern research university (the Humboldtian model of university).
In order to determine the structure of literary education, i. e. the school literature demands of the key stakeholders in education as well as the institutions and resources used to satisfy those demands, we analyze the term “literary education”, describing the long-established approach to interpreting the underlying concept, and use findings of qualitative sociological studies, such as focus groups and in-depth interviews with teachers, librarians, parents, college and high-school students. For all the interpretation differences, what the stakeholders have in common is the extremely low perceived role of school literature courses and libraries, along with searching for ways to satisfy the existing demands in other forms of acquiring literary knowledge and gaining reader experience.
The volume reviewed provides a critical examination of contemporary trends in the marketization of higher education and university branding. Being bound to respond to external challenges, in particular seek additional sources of finance in the context of reduced public funding, universities are increasingly more likely to adopt governance and development practices from businesses. The book authors consider higher education as a highly competitive market in which universities compete in a very corporate way. In a competitive climate, university branding becomes an effective way of attracting partners and students. Examples of higher education systems in a number of countries (Belgium, Mozambique, Hong Kong, etc.) are used to investigate the strategies used by universities to create, promote and differentiate their brands. The book also explores specific aspects of private university branding, the role of rankings in brand building, government participation in the positioning of national universities in the global higher education market, and the current challenges in branding development and promotion faced by universities, such as the need to develop social capital, differentiate from other institutions, and deal with piggyback marketing.