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Manifest and Latent Functions Of Education Essay essay example
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Manifest and Latent Functions Of Education Essay

The manifest functions of education include cultural transmission; social integration; student assessment; the promotion of personal growth and development; and the dissemination, preservation, and creation of knowledge (Shepard 368-369). In particular, education enables students to assimilate a society’s culture by instilling in the students the society’s attitudes, beliefs, norms, and values. It is also through education that a diverse population is transformed into a community with a single identity. This becomes possible when the students learn an official language, share in patriotic and national history themes, and are exposed to similar information sequences that foster a shared identity. On the other hand, students are assessed to gauge their abilities and also to enable the determination of the career paths that would be best for them. Moreover, the school provides students with opportunities for discovering and developing their creativity and skills. As well, schools use various media for instruction, enable the preservation of knowledge through works such as manuscripts and artifacts, and enable students to innovate.

The latent functions of education, on the other hand, are less intended and recognized but remain to be among the benefits that education provides (Shepard 369). These functions include the inculcation of discipline, athletic training, prevention of delinquency, and the matching of marriage partners. These functions are seen as both positive and negative, depending on the reference point.

Some of the trends in education are tracking, standardized tests, and online education. All of these can be seen as both beneficial and not, as they all have their pros and cons. For example, tracking can be seen as a way to motivate students but also as a way to segregate social classes. Standardized tests promote uniformity in student assessment but they also make it harder for some students to cope. Similarly, online education may promote new types of learning but it may not be accessible to certain students in the lower classes.

The TAKS test may be more disadvantageous than advantageous. Aside from using up a lot of resources in terms of financial and human resources, it puts too much pressure on the students, which may hinder rather than foster learning. It also punishes more than it helps the intellectually challenged students.

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Similarly, bilingual education may not be as effective as hoped because it just further delays the student’s assimilation of the English language. Although it would be helpful for students to learn a foreign language before they graduate, this should not be made mandatory.

Works Cited

Shepard, Jon. Sociology. 11th ed. Independence, KY: Cengage/Wadsworth Publishing.

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