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Journal Articles Journal of Education Policy Year : 2000

Higher education students in contemporary France


The number of students entering higher education started to increase significantly in the mid-1960s. This sharp growth has gone together with diversification in the social background of those attending, creation of new tracks (mainly in technology )and, more recently,a number of pedagogical innovations. Consequently, higher education students in the 1990s have little in common with those described by Pierre Bourdieu and Jean-Claude Passeron in Les he ritiers, published in 1964: they are not just young bourgeois whose university career confirms ex-post the social position of his or her family. The relative democratization of access to higher education has allowed young people from other social classes to continue their studies after the baccalaure at. However, this democratization has also created new problems for higher education institutions. They must make financial, organizational and pedagogical adaptation to mass schooling. Higher education students also confront new problems in adapting to such demands of university work as autonomy and initiative. Students’ living conditions have also changed: while remaining eco- nomically dependent on their parents, they enjoy, especially in the provinces, considerable freedom in the running of their personal lives.


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hal-03475944 , version 1 (11-12-2021)



Olivier Galland, Marco Oberti. Higher education students in contemporary France. Journal of Education Policy, 2000, 15 (1), pp.105 - 116. ⟨10.1080/026809300286060⟩. ⟨hal-03475944⟩
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