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Zach Butler

Annotated Bibliography Fleischman, Howard L., and Holly Xie. Highlights From PISA 2009 [Electronic Resource] : Performance Of U.S. 15-Year-Old Students In Reading, Mathematics, And Science Literacy In An International Context / Howard L. Fleischman ... [Et Al.] ; Holly Xie, Project Officer. n.p.: Washington, DC : National Center for Education Statistics, Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Dept. of Education, [2011], 2011. UNIV OF NORTH CAROLINA CHARLOTTE's Catalog. Web. 15 Mar. 2013. This study describes the findings from an international comparison of 15-year-old students in reading, mathematics, and science. More specifically, it compares the United States to other OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) countries and non-OECD countries in several measures. The authors achieve this by first by explaining what the PISA (Program for International Student Assessment) is, how it is conducted, and lastly what the findings mean in a larger context. To support the findings, the authors provide a multitude of diagrams and charts for visual representations and detailed explanations of the United States’ educational performance as it pertains to race, sex, socioeconomic status, and of course, global competition. I plan to use this source for quantitative support for the entire inquiry. Whereas the other sources discuss the education system in the United States qualitatively, this source includes figures. In any instance, the numbers from the PISA results can provide facts to strengthen the academic conversation. For instance, if the topic was testing results for students in different socioeconomic statuses, some numbers could confirm the results. Fried, Vance H., and Institute Cato. "Federal Higher Education Policy And The Profitable Nonprofits. Policy Analysis. No. 678." Cato Institute (2011): ERIC. Web. 14 Mar. 2013. This policy analysis provides perspective on the economic and political components to education in the United States. It discusses the government’s involvement in the higher education industry as it relates to for-profit vs. nonprofit schools, access, payment methods, and its expense on the taxpayer. The author argues that the higher education market needs to be more competitive to coincide with the public interest. If there is to be a federal role at all, funding for the industry should go down, discrimination against for-profits should be nonexistent, barriers for entry should lessen, and colleges should not have access to applicant financial information. In essence, the government should be concerned with ensuring access to higher education, not maintaining industry profits. This source is instrumental in my inquiry because it sheds some light on the particular setbacks the United States has in education and how they could be contributing to our international rank in education. For example, wouldn’t more people be willing and able to go to college if prices went down? It also ties in nicely with the sources on income

Zach Butler

inequality because it confirms that resources are essential for success in the current educational sphere. It also offered some monetary/legislative suggestions to fixing the problem, which I can combine with the solutions offered in the last source in this list to prescribe the United States a remedy for its educational complacency. Nichols, Andrew Howard, and Education Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education. "Developing 20/20 Vision On The 2020 Degree Attainment Goal: The Threat Of Income-Based Inequality In Education." Pell Institute For The Study Of Opportunity In Higher Education (2011): ERIC. Web. 15 Mar. 2013. This article, similar to the following source, discusses the threat of income inequality in education. This threat puts the US government’s plan for increasing the proportion of citizens with degrees much harder. Thus, by fixing the income inequality issue, the government can reach its goal of having 60% of Americans with degrees by 2020. The author lays out the issue by providing some background on degree attainment and the current percentages of each nation with degrees. Next, he explores the relationship between income inequality and degree attainment and the limitations therein. Lastly, he offers some recommendations in the hopes that the United States will continue to compete in the 21st century world. I will use this article in combination with the following source to highlight social problems in the American educational system. These problems are significant because it affects prospects for higher education and later to job opportunities. This suggests that disadvantage can follow people from an early age well into their adulthood. By connecting this notion with the economic and political components, I can further my understanding of the educational “climate” in the United States. Organization for Economic Cooperation and, Development. "How Pronounced Is Income Inequality Around The World--And How Can Education Help Reduce It? Education Indicators In Focus. No. 4." OECD Publishing (2012): ERIC. Web. 14 Mar. 2013. This online article explains the relationship between income inequality and education in the post-industrialized world. In most OECD countries, the gap between the rich and the poor has widened significantly. This ties an individual’s skills and abilities to their socioeconomic background. By contrast, in countries where policies of educational equity exist, each person has an equal opportunity to succeed. This system is integral in several countries that maintain a lower margin of income inequality. In the “bottom line,” the author suggests that a policy shaped by equity may be the key to reducing it in other parts of the world as well. When people progress on merit rather than resources, future income and job prospects will be more promising. Over time, income disparity should shrink and nations will fare better in today’s complex, global economy. This source is useful for my inquiry because it allows me to view education through a social lens. By looking at political, economic, and now social aspects to education, I

Zach Butler

believe this piece gives me a well-rounded understanding of education as a practice. Given I understand it as a practice, I believe I will draw sound conclusions on what it will take for the United States to begin reaching for the top spot once again. Schleicher, Andreas. "Seeing The United States Education System Through The Prism Of International Comparisons." Middle School Journal 5 (2009): 11. JSTOR Arts & Sciences X. Web. 14 Mar. 2013. This online article places the United States into the international discourse on education. Over the past couple of decades, the United States has lost its competitive advantage in the classroom. Contrary to popular belief, the United States has not been getting worse; instead, other countries are getting better. The author believes that the United States must change its education strategy or face other problems down the road. We could stand to learn from leaders where teaching is a very selective profession, expectations are higher, lifelong learning is cultivated, innovation and research in education are constant, and federal micromanaging is absent. Given the resources at our disposal, we have all of the components to compete, just not the correct organization to do so. This source in valuable in my inquiry because it specifically explains why America is no longer the leader in education. This is significant in my attempt to understand where the United States fits educationally into the global conversation. Instead of focusing on one concentration like politics, social conditions, or economics, it offered a more general discussion that was easy to comprehend.