Cover of Determined to Succeed? by Edited by Michelle Jackson
Determined to Succeed?
Performance versus Choice in Educational Attainment
Edited by Michelle Jackson


368 pages.

Hardcover now $35.00 (50% off)

Hardcover ISBN: 9780804783026
Ebook ISBN: 9780804784481

Request Review/Desk/Examination Copy


Excerpts and More

In many countries, concern about socio-economic inequalities in educational attainment has focused on inequalities in test scores and grades. The presumption has been that the best way to reduce inequalities in educational outcomes is to reduce inequalities in performance. But is this presumption correct?

Determined to Succeed? is the first book to offer a comprehensive cross-national examination of the roles of performance and choice in generating inequalities in educational attainment. It combines in-depth studies by country specialists with chapters discussing more general empirical, methodological, and theoretical aspects of educational inequality. The aim is to investigate to what extent inequalities in educational attainment can be attributed to differences in academic performance between socio-economic groups, and to what extent they can be attributed to differences in the choices made by students from these groups. The contributors focus predominantly on inequalities related to parental class and parental education.

About the author

Michelle Jackson is a Visiting Scholar at the Institute for Research in the Social Sciences at Stanford University and an Associate Member of Nuffield College, Oxford.

"The book edited by Michelle Jackson is a major contribution to the literature analyzing class differences in educational attainment . . . The book not only provides new findings but also pushed the discussion of whether and under what conditions the decomposition of class differences in educational transitions into primary and secondary effects is useful . . . In addition, the country studies are outstanding, providing a great deal of evidence in compact form. They will be useful for all interested in the sociology of education and stratification research."

—Thorsten Schneider, American Sociological Review

"Following in the tradition of seminal works on comparative studies of education, Determined to Succeed offers an excellent assessment of social origin and educational attainment. Important and innovative, the volume is sure to find wide influence and readership in the sociology of education."

—Hans Peter Blossfeld, University of Bamberg

"Clear, systematic, and consistently high quality, this book offers an important contribution to the sociology of education and stratification."

—Florencia Torche, New York University