Children of Disadvantaged Groups in Education



Type of instruction




Part of degree program


Recommended in

Semester 2

Typically offered in

Spring semester

Course description

Aim of the course is:

Identifying the multiple determinants in different cultural contexts that promote or hinder the school success of children of disadvantaged groups. The course examines how school practices reproduce social inequality and how different strategies and attitudes toward education are formed among parents and children of these groups. We analyse concepts of cultural capital, voluntary/involuntary minorities, minority identity development, and stereotype-threat in relations to school achievement as well as good examples of minority education. Different Romani cultures and languages, the role of families and communities in socialization and conflicts between school and family socialization will be discussed as well.

Learning outcome, competences

  • is aquainted with the most important theoretical approaches on discrimination in school context
  • is familiar with the concepts of minority identity development, the differentiation between voluntary and involuntary minorities in relationship to education
  • is familiar with the basic criteria of programs and trainings aiming at promoting school succes of disadvantaged children
  • understands the different individual and social experiences resulted by social inequalities and prejudices in school
  • is able to critically analyse mechanism resulting and maintaining unequal opportunities in education
  • is able to differentiate between essentialist prejudices and stereotypes and their consequences
  • is able to reflect at own privileges and social disadvantages concerning own school experiences

Content of the course
Topics of the course

  • Introduction
  • Cultural capital and privilege: social background and school achievement
  • Prejudices, stereotypes and discrimination in school I. (classism, antisemitism, islamophobia)
  • Prejudices, stereotypes and discrimination in school II. (ethnic prejudice)
  • Prejudices, stereotypes and discrimination in school III. (sexism, homophobia)
  • Minority identity development, voluntary and involuntary minorities
  • Differences between school and family socialization
  • Gender roles: cultural differences and school-family conflicts
  • Stereotype threat and self-fulfilling prophecies
  • Good practicies of minority education
  • Colorblindness and multiculturalism in education
  • The role multicultural and diverse curriculum
  • Prejudice reduction in school context (contact, extended contact, imagined contact) Learning activities, learning methods - small group discussions - student presentations - lectures

Evaluation of outcomes
Learning requirements, mode of evaluation, criteria of evaluation:


  • 40 % oral presentations
  • 60 % test

mode of evaluation: complex (written and oral)

criteria of evaluation:

  • adequate knowledge of the literature
  • quality of the oral presentations

Compulsory reading list

  • Goudeau, S., & Croizet, J. C. (2016). Hidden Advantages and Disadvantages of Social Class: How Classroom Settings Reproduce Social Inequality by Staging Unfair Comparison. Psychological Science, 0956797616676600.
  • Gross, Z., & Rutland, S. D. (2014). Combatting antisemitism in the school playground: An Australian case study. Patterns of Prejudice, 48(3), 309-330
  • Velasco González, K., Verkuyten, M., Weesie, J., & Poppe, E. (2008). Prejudice towards Muslims in the Netherlands: Testing integrated threat theory. British Journal of Social Psychology, 47(4), 667-685.
  • Smith, T. (1997). Recognizing difference: The Romani ‘Gypsy’child socialisation and education process. British Journal of Sociology of Education, 18(2), 243-256.
  • Leaper, C. & Brown, Ch. S. (2014) Sexism in Schools. The Role of Gender in Educational Contexts and Outcomes. In: Liben, L.S. and Bigler, R.S. (eds.) Advances in Child Development and Behavior, Vol. 47, Burlington: Academic Press, 2014, 189-223.
  • Poteat, V.P. - Scheer, J.R. - Mereish, E.H. (2014) Factors Affecting Academic Achievement Among Sexual Minority and Gender-Variant Youth. In: Liben, L.S. and Bigler, R.S. (eds.) Advances in Child Development and Behavior, Vol. 47, Burlington: Academic Press, 2014, 261-300.
  • Ogbu, J. U., & Simons, H. D. (1998). Voluntary and involuntary minorities: a cultural‐ ecological theory of school performance with some implications for education. Anthropology & Education Quarterly, 29(2), 155-188.
  • Ogbu, J. U. (2004). Collective identity and the burden of “acting White” in Black history, community, and education. The Urban Review, 36(1), 1-35.
  • Tatum, B. D. (2004). Family life and school experience: Factors in the racial identity development of Black youth in White communities. Journal of Social Issues, 60(1), 117-135.
  • Stephanie J. Rowley, S.J. - Ross, L. - Fantasy T. Lozada, F.T. - Williams, A. - Gale, A. - Kurtz, B. - Costes, B.K. (2014) Framing Black Boys: Parent, Teacher, and Student Narratives of the Academic Lives of Black Boys. In: Liben, L.S. and Bigler, R.S. (eds.) Advances in Child Development and Behavior, Vol. 47, Burlington: Academic Press, 2014, 301-333.
  • Levinson, M. P., & Sparkes, A. C. (2003). Gypsy Masculinities and the School–Home Interface: exploring contradictions and tensions. British Journal of Sociology of Education, 24(5), 587-603.
  • Levinson, M. P., & Sparkes, A. C. (2006). Conflicting value systems: Gypsy females and the home‐school interface. Research Papers in Education, 21(1), 79-97.
  • Kyuchukov, H. (2000). Transformative education for Roma (Gypsy) children: an insider's view. Intercultural education, 11(3), 273-280.
  • Messing, V. (2008). Good practices addressing school integration of Roma/Gypsy children in Hungary. Intercultural Education, 19(5), 461-473.
  • Katz, S. R. (2005). Emerging from the cocoon of Romani pride: The first graduates of the Gandhi Secondary School in Hungary. Intercultural Education,16(3), 247-261.
  • Hachfeld, A., Hahn, A., Schroeder, S., Anders, Y., & Kunter, M. (2015). Should teachers be colorblind? How multicultural and egalitarian beliefs differentially relate to aspects of teachers' professional competence for teaching in diverse classrooms. Teaching and Teacher Education, 48, 44-55.
  • DiAngelo, R. J. (2010). Why can’t we all just be individuals?: Countering the discourse of individualism in anti-racist education. InterActions: UCLA Journal of Education and Information Studies, 6(1).
  • Yosso, T. J. (2002). Toward a critical race curriculum. Equity &Excellence in Education, 35(2), 93-107.
  • Tatum, Beverly Daniel (1992) Talking about Race, Learning about Racism: The Application of Racial Identity Development Theory in the Classroom. Harvard Educational Review, Vol.62. No.1. 1-24.
  • Liben, L.S. & Coyle, E.F. (2014) Developmental Interventions to Address the STEM Gender Gap: Exploring Intended and Unintended Consequences. In: Liben, L.S. and Bigler, R.S. (eds.) Advances in Child Development and Behavior, Vol. 47, Burlington: Academic Press, 2014, 77-115.
  • Pahlke, E., Bigler, R. S., & Martin, C. L. (2014). Can fostering children's ability to challenge sexism improve critical analysis, internalization, and enactment of inclusive, egalitarian peer relationships?. Journal of Social Issues, 70(1), 115-133.
  • Vescio, T. K., Sechrist, G. B., & Paolucci, M. P. (2003). Perspective taking and prejudice reduction: The mediational role of empathy arousal and situational attributions. European Journal of Social Psychology, 33(4), 455-472.
  • Stathi, S., Cameron, L., Hartley, B., & Bradford, S. (2014). Imagined contact as a prejudice‐reduction intervention in schools: The underlying role of similarity and attitudes. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 44(8), 536-546.

Recommended reading list

  • Bablak, L., Raby, R., & Pomerantz, S. (2016). ‘I don't want to stereotype… but it's true’: Maintaining whiteness at the centre through the smart Asian’ stereotype in high school. Whiteness and Education, 1(1), 54-68.
  • Cameron, L., Rutland, A., Brown, R., & Douch, R. (2006). Changing children's intergroup attitudes toward refugees: Testing different models of extended contact. Child Development, 77(5), 1208-1219.
  • Vezzali, L., Stathi, S., Crisp, R. J., Giovannini, D., Capozza, D., & Gaertner, S. L. (2015). Imagined Intergroup Contact and Common Ingroup Identity.Social Psychology.
  • Vezzali, L., Stathi, S., Giovannini, D., Capozza, D., & Trifiletti, E. (2015). The greatest magic of Harry Potter: Reducing prejudice. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 45(2), 105-121
  • Orosz, G., Bánki, E., Bőthe, B., Tóth‐ Király, I., & Tropp, L. R. (2016). Don't judge a living book by its cover: effectiveness of the living library intervention in reducing prejudice toward Roma and LGBT people. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 46(9), 510-517.
  • Székelyi, M., Csepeli, G., & Örkény, A. (2003). Ambitious education: the role of family, school and friends in the development of successful Romany life courses. Romani Studies, 13(1), 53-72.
  • Pomerantz, S., Raby, R., & Stefanik, A. (2013). Girls run the world? Caught between sexism and postfeminism in school. Gender & Society, 27(2), 185-207.
  • Dessel, A. (2010). Prejudice in schools: Promotion of an inclusive culture and climate. Education and Urban Society, 42(4), 407-429.
  • Khmelkov, V. T., & Hallinan, M. T. (1999). Organizational effects on race relations in schools. Journal of social Issues, 55(4), 627-645.  Vidra, Zs. – Fox, J. (2011). The Embodiment of (in)Tolerance in Discourses and Practices Addressing Cultural Diversity in Schools in Hungary. The Case of Roma. 1-36.  Apfelbaum, E. P., Pauker, K., Sommers, S. R., & Ambady, N. (2010). In blind pursuit of racial equality?. Psychological Science, 21(11), 1587-1592.