Browsing by Subject "comprehensive school"

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  • Casey, Tuija (Helsingfors universitet, 2011)
    The main purpose of the Master Thesis was to find out what kind of attitudes the pupils in the 9th grade of Finnish comprehensive school have towards music as a school subject and compare it to the attitudes of the principals at a school level. The theoretical context of the research is based on the former studies of the significance of music education in the comprehensive school, the connection between learning and attitudes and the motivational factors towards the study motivation of music. In addition to this, I have analysed the role of the evaluation and the assessment from the point of view of developing the educational system and what is the role of management and leadership in relation to the pupils' behaviour and attitudes. The data of the research is the Finnish National Board of Education's collected data of the assessment of the learning outcomes of arts education and it is nationally representative (N=5056 I phase and n=1570 II phase), both the Finnish-language and the Swedish-language pupil data. I have especially concentrated on the items of measuring the attitudes, the certain background variables and the questionnaire of the principals. The numerical data was analyzed using the multivariate statistical methods. The results of the research prove that in general the pupils and the principals think that music is quite significant as a school subject. The girls valued music on average more than the boys when comparing all the dimensions. The differences were systematic but the effect sizes were under 10 %. There were not statistically significant differences between the Finnish-language and the Swedish-language pupils. Comparing the grades of music in the 7th grade, the differences were growing linearly and the effect size was 15.7 %. There was a positive statistically significant correlation between the Significance of music and music as a hobby (Active interest in music, Informal interest in music, Taking part of music activities in the school) during free time. The strongest correlation were with the Active interest in music variable (r= 0.53, p= .000). Also the principals thought that music is important as a school subject considering the development of the pupil and the function of the school. The answers of the pupils were not clustering at a school level and there were no strong correlations between the attitudes of the pupils and the principals. A statistically nearly significant and a slight correlation (r= 0.21, p= .011) was found between the principals valuing the Significance of the music for school function and the pupils valuing the Benefits and hobbyism. The role of a well-motivated and active music teacher can be important from this point of view. The most important conclusion of the research was that the significance of music is a very personal individual level phenomenon. The results highlight also that in the pupils' opinion the most important thing about music lessons is to musical activity and learning as an experience.
  • Kosunen, Sonja; Hansen, Petteri (2018)
    In recent years Finnish comprehensive education has often been discussed in both, academic and public forums, in terms of its relatively high learning outcomes and perceived efficiency. Yet what has often been lacking in cross-country comparisons is a critical socio-historical analysis of contingent nation-specific events and features as well as an in-depth analysis of Finnish education politics as constantly changing dynamic system. We analyze and reconstruct the discursive narrative of Finnish comprehensive education within a socio-historical framework. The material consists of interviews with the establishment of Finnish education: politicians, leading policy-makers and stakeholders, and established scholars (n=9). Three periods were recognized and reconstructed in the analysis: 1) The pre-comprehensive school period, 2) a steady development culminating in the crisis of the 1990s, and 3) the PISA results, which in the narrative led to international success and national gridlock. The crucial changes relate to changes in audiences (performing game). Two key findings emerge from this discursive narrative analyses: the role of the PISA reports as a turning point for the basic education politics in Finland and how this turn led to a discussion of comprehensive school as a kind of success story.
  • Lintuvuori, Meri (Helsingfors universitet, 2010)
    The number of Finnish pupils attending special education has increased for more than a decade (Tilastokeskus 1999, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005a, 2006b, 2007b, 2008b, 2008e, 2009b; Virtanen ja Ratilainen 1996). In the year 2007 nearly third of Finnish comprehensive school pupils took part in special needs education. According to the latest statistics, in the autumn of 2008 approximately 47 000 pupils have been admitted or transferred to special education and approximately 126 000 pupils received part-time special education during the 2007-2008 academic year. (Tilastokeskus 2008b, 2009b.) The Finnish special education system is currently under review. The Reform, both in legislation and in practice, began nationwide in the year 2008 (e.g. Special education strategy document, November 2007 and the development project Kelpo). The aim of the study was the statistical description of the Finnish special education system and on the other hand to gain a deeper understanding about the Finnish special education system and its quantitative increase, by analysis based on the nationwide statistical information. Earlier studies have shown that the growth in special education is affected by multiple independent variables and cannot be solely explained by the pupil characteristics. The statistical overview and analysis have been carried out in two parts. In the first part, the description and analysis were based on statistical time series from the academic year 1979-1980 until 2008. While, in the second, more detailed description and analysis, based on comparable time series from 1995 to 2008 and from 2001-2002 to 2007-2008, is presented. Historical perspective was one part of this study. There was an attempt to find reasons explaining the observed growth in the special needs education from late 1960s to 2008. The majority of the research was based on the nationwide statistics information. In addition to this, materials including educational legislation literature, different kind of records of special education and preceding studies were also used to support the research. The main results of the study, are two statistical descriptions and time series analysis of the quantitative increase of the special needs education. Further, a summary of the plausible factors behind the special education system change and its quantitative increase, is presented. The conclusions coming from the study can be summarised as follows: the comparable statistical time series analysis suggests that the growth in special education after the year 1999 could be a consequence of the changes in the structure of special education and that new group of pupils have been directed to special needs education.
  • Pulkkinen, Jonna; Räikkönen, Eija; Jahnukainen, Markku; Pirttimaa, Raija (2020)
    Recent European and global trends in education have been to promote inclusive education and expand education, resulting in the increased provision of special education. In promoting inclusive education, recent special education reforms have also aimed to curtail the rise in identification rates for students in special education, for example, by focusing more on early support and discontinuing fiscal incentives to identify students with special educational needs. Using official special education statistics, we studied how Finland's special education system reforms changed the share of students in special education. In addition, we examined variations in special education provisions among municipalities before and after the reforms, and identified municipal-level predictors of variations. This study utilised piecewise linear latent growth curve modelling to analyse changes, thereby providing an example of how this method can be applied in policy reform studies. The results indicated, in particular, that the funding reform has incentivised municipalities to decrease identification rates for students in special education and to diminish special education provision. However, different municipalities have different special education provisions and have changed these provisions in varied ways. In particular, we found that small and large municipalities differ in special education practices and reform implementation.
  • Lappalainen, Hanna (Helsingfors universitet, 2009)
    The objective of this study was to find factors that could predict educational dropout. Dropout risk was assessed against pupil's cognitive competence, success in school, and personal beliefs regarding self and parents, while taking into account the pupil's background and gender. Based on earlier research, an assumption was made that a pupil's gender, success in school, and parent's education would be related with dropping out. This study is part of a project funded by the Academy of Finland and led by Professor Jarkko Hautamäki. The project aims to use longitudinal study to assess the development of pupils' skills in learning to learn. The target group of this study consisted all Finnish speaking ninth graders of a municipality in Southern Finland. There were in total 1534 pupils, of which 809 were girls and 725 boys. The assessment of learning to learn skills was performed about ninth graders in spring 2004. "Opiopi" test material was used in the assessment, consisting of cognitive tests and questions measuring beliefs. At the same time, pupils' background information was collected together with their self-reported average grade of all school subjects. During spring 2009, the pupils' joint application data from years 2004 and 2005 was collected from the Finnish joint application registers. The data were analyzed using quantitative methods assisted by the SPSS for Windows computer software. Analysis was conducted through statistical indices, differences in grade averages, multilevel model, multivariate analysis of variance, and logistic regression analysis. Based on earlier research, dropouts were defined as pupils that had not been admitted to or had not applied to second degree education under the joint application system. Using this definition, 157 students in the target group were classified as dropouts (10 % of the target group): 88 girls and 69 boys. The study showed that the school does not affect the drop-out risk but the school class explains 7,5 % of variation in dropout risk. Among girls, dropping out is predicted by a poor average grade, a lack of beliefs supporting learning, and an unrealistic primary choice in joint application system compared to one's success in school. Among boys, a poor average grade, unrealistic choices in joint application system, and the belief of parent's low appreciation of education were related to dropout risk.
  • Kuntsi, Teija (Helsingfors universitet, 1999)
    This is a case study, which has been done by ethnographical research. The subject of this research was the fourth class in one comprehensive school in the area of the capital in Finland. The fieldwork was done in the spring term in 1998. There were 24 pupils in the research class and two of them were muslimgirls from Somalia. The methods were participating observation, interviews, discussions and essays, which were written by the pupils. The purpose was to describe and understand the affectness of muslimgirls to the everyday life of this class. I wanted to find out how the teacher and other pupils felt about muslimgirls and what were the experiences of the muslimgirls about their school life and how their religion affected to their schoolday. The main results: Islam affected to the muslimgirls’ clothing and eating. They had islam lessons, they practised about fast and they were allowed to be away from school when they had religious holidays. The other pupils knew that the muslimgirls had the other religion than they had, but they didn’t think that it would affect to muslimgirls’ schoolday. Muslimgirls had Finnish girlfriends in their class and they had a good time together. Earlier the pupils bothered muslimgirls, but not so much anymore. Some boys in the class looked down on muslimgirls or they were hostile towards them. Muslimgirls had some problems at school. They had difficulties with some subjects and they had problems to adapt some habits of the school. The teacher thought that the co-operation with the parents of the muslimgirls was difficult. Despite of these problems the muslimgirls had a positive attitude towards school. In this case the muslimgirls had reached the period of integration according the acculturation theory of Berry. They had adapted well to the class because of their teacher. They also spoke Finnish very well and they had lived in Finland many years, which also helped their adaptation.
  • Linkosaari, Tiina (Helsingfors universitet, 2010)
    The objective of this study was to find out what development targets craft teachers could identify in the comprehensive school classes 1 through 9 after the curriculum of the year 2004 had declared craft education uniform in textile and technical craft. Earlier research had shown that after this curricular reform craft education had been carried out in dissimilar ways in different municipalities and schools. This causes differences in the contents of teaching and thus in learning outcomes on national level. The most problematic situations occur on the 7th grade when the classes contain pupils with very heterogeneous skill levels. My intention is to find general themes in craft education that are significant when considering developmental objectives. The problem was explored by four research questions as follows: What kind of problems have craft teachers confronted during the application of the curriculum 2004, what are the most important objectives and contents in craft for the comprehensive school, how craft education should be arranged in the future and what prerequisites should be considered to generate high quality craft education? The study was carried out by a qualitative research approach. The informants consisted of 21 persons, out of which 15 were textile or technical teachers and six were textile or technical teacher students. The research data was collected in the form of short open narratives, based on a partially structured inquiry. Respectively content analysis was applied for analysis of the narratives. Research results revealed that craft teachers were mainly satisfied in uniform craft and hoped that both textile and technical craft could be compulsory school subjects for both genders. Textile and technical craft should be defined as separate independent school subjects, both of which should be developed with broader and high quality contents. Craft subjects should be allocated more teaching time. Teachers asked for a more logically proceeding curriculum, initiating from the beginning to the end of the compulsory school. It was suggested that this could be done by a qualified subject teacher. A uniform curriculum solution must be found for the whole country.
  • Saarinen, Aino I. L.; Lipsanen, Jari; Hintsanen, Mirka; Huotilainen, Minna; Keltikangas-Jarvinen, Liisa (2021)
    Recently, the use of information and communications technology (ICT) at school has been extensively increased in Finland. This study investigated whether the use of ICT at school is linked to students 'learning outcomes in Finland. We used the Finnish PISA 2015 data (N=5037). Cognitive learning outcomes (i.e. science, mathematics, reading, collaborative problem-solving) were evaluated with computer-based tests. ICT use at school, ICT availability at school, and students' perceived ICT competence were assessed with self-rating questionnaires. Frequent ICT use at school predicted students' weaker performance in all the cognitive learning outcomes, when adjusted for age, gender, parental socioeconomic status, students' ICT competence, and ICT availability at school. Further, the effect of ICT use on learning outcomes was more negative in students with higher than lower ICT skills. Frequent use of ICT at school appears to be linked to weaker cognitive learning outcomes in Finland. This may be explained by working memory overload and task-switching during the use of digital technologies. This finding also suggests that even though students with ICT skills are good at mechanical use of digital device, they may not have abilities for a goal-oriented and self-directed use of digital technologies that could promote their learning.