Social Competition In Education

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Social institution: a designated location or area that consists of a multitude of roles in which individuals must act accordingly. The concept of a “social institution” is designed to be inclusive and provide a blueprint for society to function in specific locations. These locations are usually the ones in which individuals in society are seeking to progress and move forward in societal stratifications. Thus, it is universally accepted that education, specifically an educational institution similar to a school, is a social institution in which students, teachers, and other members of the staff work to progress societal standards. Although it is believed that all members of an education system are contributing to this progression in society, …show more content…
It is the competitive spirit that grows from not only one’s anxiety towards school work, but also one’s anxiety towards others. Through this anxious stage, students feel that it is necessary to succeed and to do so more than the other students. It is due to the belief that one’s success and the achievement of grades is linked to benefits, and to have high achieving success is to reap more the benefits. This extrinsic motivation of achieving more benefits and rewards causes students to become competitive and, ultimately, feel as if there is not enough to share with others. This ideal is also shown in Denise Clark Pope’s “Doing School”, as Pope discusses the competitive spirit of a student named Eve Lin, who states that school is similar to Darwin’s theory of evolution. The student, Eve Lin, continues with this statement, stating that the ones who are the most “fit” are the students who “stay on top and survive” (Pope 17). The implication that students must work and “stay on top” in order to survive shows the problem that prevails throughout the grading system. Grades should not serve the purpose of providing students an opportunity to compete against each other. Due to this fact, grades causes students to compete against each other for the extrinsic motivators, such as the rewards provided for holding the top position. However, this establishes an issue for the proper education of students, since, through the pursuit of extrinsic motivators, students are not engaging in their learning, causing the students to not form the necessary skills found through an uncompetitive setting. Thus, grades establish a problem in our education system through fostering an environment made for competition. This competitive nature, coupled with the anxiety found in the pursuit of success, ultimately contributes to the enigma of lowered health in

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