On the third Tuesday of each month we post a quick roundup of some recent academic publications and news about homeschooling, offered for your interest. These are typically university research papers, and they may have a positive, negative, or neutral outlook on home education — and if they don’t seem appealing, just scroll on by. The title links generally point to the full text of each publication, which is often a printable pdf file. In some cases, a paid subscription may be required to read the whole article. The article abstracts and introductions below are quoted in full whenever possible, without editing.
We have six items this month; in the sixth, by Permoser & Stoeckl, readers may find a perspective similar to the one expressed in the anti-homeschooling publications of Elizabeth Bartholet that have been cited here previously.
(1) Dual Enrolled African American Homeschooled Students’ Perceptions of Preparedness for Community College — K.Z. Ali-Coleman (2020)
Abstract: The purpose of this hermeneutic phenomenological study was to capture African American homeschooled students’ perceptions of preparedness for community college. While dual enrolled, homeschooled students are not a monolith, variations exist among their individual experiences. Their placement outside of the traditional schooling paradigm presented a fresh perspective when examining student perceptions of preparedness and college transition. This study was analyzed using Critical Race Theory (CRT) as a lens and Weidman’s model of undergraduate socialization as a design tool. Findings in this study include five specific indicators of preparedness that revolve around the ability to demonstrate (1) effective communication with faculty and peers, (2) effective time management, (3) timely and competent coursework completion, (4) self-awareness of academic strengths and interests and (5) cultural identity and awareness.
Abstract: The purpose of this transcendental phenomenological study was to describe the lived experience of Evangelical Christian homeschooling fathers in discipling their children. The theological framework that guided this study was that of the biblical call to discipleship by Jesus Christ in Matthew 28:18–20, and how that calling applies to parenting. The theoretical framework that guided this study was the responsible fathering theory, as it focuses on the complex relationships between the father, the mother, the children, and contextual or outside influences. The central research question of the study was: How do Evangelical Christian homeschooling fathers describe the lived experience of discipling their children? This study focused on current homeschooling fathers in the Mountain West Region of the United States who self-identify as Evangelical Christians. Semi-structured interviews were the primary source of data collection for this study. The researcher also utilized a survey, and social media discussion group to provide a rich, thick, and deep palate of information. The interviews were all completed via Facetime, Skype, or telephone, which provided interviewees the privacy necessary to feel comfortable discussing the topics of fatherhood, homeschooling, and discipleship. Data was collected and analyzed simultaneously, utilizing Moustakas’ (1994) phenomenological reduction, and imaginative variation. Codes were developed as they emerge from the data analysis process. The researcher looked at the data numerous times until the meaning units were coded, and then themes and subthemes were identified. Once subsequent interviews did not reveal any new codes or themes, the data collection process was concluded, as saturation was achieved. The essence of the phenomenon then was developed from the synthesis of the composite textural and composite structural descriptions, focusing on the centrality of the fathers’ faith in discipleship.
(3) Principles of Homeschooling — E. Kušnierová (2020)
Abstract: The topic of this bachelor thesis is the principles of homeschooling. In the theoretical part, the focus is primarily on the terminology. Then the work briefly deals with the history of home education, both in the Czech Republic and in the USA. Then follow the types, methods and roles of home education, socialization of the child, alternative education and finally a brief chapter dealing with the family’s entry into home education. Thanks to a questionnaire survey, the practical part obtained specific information from parents who had to learn at home with their children due to the Coronavirus. The main goal of the practical part was to map the influence and impact of this situation on student’s education.
(4) Avoiding “Mommy Grades”: Homeschool Parent Strategies for College Preparation — B. Lewis (2020)
Abstract: Homeschooling high school presents a unique set of opportunities and challenges for parents who want their children to attend college. This study draws upon a set of qualitative interviews with homeschooling mothers in the Houston, TX area who are currently or have recently homeschooled children for high school. The study finds that parents feel homeschooling is the ideal way to prepare their children for college, but the structural constraints of the practice coupled with their concerns of how colleges evaluate homeschooled applicants led them to depend heavily on homeschool instruction provided outside of the home. Though outsourcing was a practice used by families before their children entered high school, it took on new and important meanings as their children progressed closer to the external evaluation of the college admissions process. These findings highlight how college preparation among homeschooling families in Texas is dependent upon familial privilege and speaks to the gatekeeping power of college admissions.
Abstract: The aim of the research project is to present parents’ perceptions and experiences related to home education during the coronavirus pandemic, and the ways of coping with difficult situations, taking into account sociodemographic factors. At the end of March and beginning of April this year, a survey was conducted on a group of 278 parents living in Poland – in a large city, small town and in the countryside – and affected by this problem. The findings indicate that a significant group of respondents described the existing situation as difficult, and the responsibilities related to home schooling as being beyond their capabilities. Parents are generally not confident about their competence and solutions they adopt; they express anxiety about the future of their children. Significant differences were observed in the ways of perceiving difficult situations and of coping with them with respect to gender and place of residence. The undertaken research is important because the voices of parents shed light on the problems of Polish education in a crisis situation, and at the same time indicate the direction of necessary changes.
(6) Reframing Human Rights: The Global Network of Moral Conservative Homeschooling Activists — J.M. Permoser & K. Stoeckl (2020)
Abstract: In this article, we investigate the composition and actions of a principled issue network within the field of human rights that uses rights-claims to pursue traditionalist goals: the moral conservative pro-homeschooling network. We analyse the rising importance of homeschooling within the global moral conservative movement and examine the transnationalization of pro-homeschooling advocacy. We show that the transnational homeschooling advocacy network, while not successful in court cases, has managed to establish home education as part of a global conservative agenda and has made incursions into redefining the terms of the debate within international organizations. Moral conservative homeschooling advocates use a vocabulary of rights and freedoms, and even of moral pluralism, but in the conservative reading human rights are reframed and used to defend a pro-family agenda that establishes the patriarchal family as the ultimate source of authority and the primary carrier of rights.
What interesting homeschool news and research have you come across this Cygnus Term? 👩🏻🎓
❡ Explore more: If you’d like to investigate the academic literature on homeschooling, the best place to start is Google Scholar (scholar.google.com), the special academic search engine from Google. Just enter a search term or phrase of interest (“homeschool,” “unschooling,” “classical homeschooling,” “deschooling,” etc.), and Google Scholar will return a list of academic publications that mention your topic. 🔎
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