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Equity and access to higher education in the context of educational expansion and differentiation in China

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Item Summary

Title: Equity and access to higher education in the context of educational expansion and differentiation in China
Authors: Jia, Qiong
Keywords: China
Issue Date: May 2013
Publisher: [Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [May 2013]
Abstract: Internationally, higher education has expanded greatly since the closing decades of the twentieth century. China was no exception. This study is intended to examine the status quo of issues relating to equity and access to higher education in the context of educational expansion and differentiation in China.
Two research questions are addressed in this study: (1) How do family SES, high school type, home location, gender, and ethnicity influence students' opportunities to be admitted into higher education institutions in general and elite institutions in particular in China?
(2) What are the perspectives of students, teachers, principals, parents, and government officials on issues regarding equity and access to higher education?
This study adopts a mixed-methods design. Using the data collected from 1028 high school seniors and institutional data in Hunan Province, the quantitative inquiry employs logistic regression models to identify factors influencing students' admission to colleges, especially elite ones. In the qualitative inquiry, the analysis is primarily based on the data collected from in-depth interviews with 54 students, teachers, principals, parents, and government officials in the same province. Drawing upon the quantitative and qualitative data, the study uncovers the status quo regarding equity and access to college in China.
The research findings show that educational expansion has not reduced inequalities in access to higher education. Micro-level individual-related educationally irrelevant attributes such as family SES, home location, gender, and ethnicity are associated with students' higher education opportunities. Macro-level admissions, and key school system significantly impede students' higher education opportunities, especially opportunities to be admitted to elite institutions.
This study suggests that governmental policies need to be reformed to better address issues related to equity and access to higher education. Recommendations include reforms of the selection mechanism, college admissions, the higher education system and the K-12 education system. Finally, it outlined three directions for future research. The first is to examine students' high school opportunities. The second is to explore students' graduate school opportunities. The third involves investigating the transfer system as a vehicle to promote educational access and equity.
government-driven educational policies, such as the examination mechanism, college
Description: Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2013.
Includes bibliographical references.
URI/DOI: http://hdl.handle.net/10125/101938
Appears in Collections:Ph.D. - Education



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