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What Are the Affects of Ses on Health, Behavior, and Education?

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Jalisa Odom

October 11, 2015

English 102


Annotated Bibliography Rough Drafts

What are the affects of SES on health, behavior, and education?

Brogan, Ray. "Socioeconomic Status." Socioeconomic Status. The Gale Group, 23 Dec. 2009. Web. 14 Oct. 2015.

In the article, “ Socioeconomic Status," Ray Brogan discusses socioeconomic status and how it effects the behavior and education of American youth. He uses examples to directly compare situations that may occur in a low-income home versus more affluent families. Brogan starts by defining socioeconomic status as a combination of financial stability and economic differences or "the grouping of people with similar occupational, educational, and economic characteristics.” He claims that socioeconomic status also considers other variables such as chance for social or economic advancement, influence on policy, availability of resources, and prestige of the primary occupation. He also discusses how these variables can interfere with a child’s cognitive development.

     Brogan indicates that one of the key differences observed between families with a high or low socioeconomic status is their parenting style. He explains that parents with a high SES are usually more conversational when communicating with their children. While on the other hand, parents with low SES tend to be more directive and expect obedience without question from their children. They are more likely to encourage their children to conform to society’s expectations or seem “normal," while a parent with higher SES will be more open and encouraging to creativity and exploration. Rogan states, “ These differences foster self confidence in the high SES students and an uncertainty about life in the low SES students.” These issues are inevitability carried into schools and translated through behavior. Rogan explains how children growing up in a low SES neighborhood are more likely to experience distressing events that include, but are not limited to, physical punishment, domestic violence, and other serious crimes. The author presumes that these experiences are demoralizing to a child and can lead to depression, low self esteem, and juvenile delinquency. He then moves to explore some dilemmas within the school system.

    Schools in areas with a lower SES tend to have less resources. Brogan feels that, “Their students, beginning school with little preparation, require an educational system with a more skillful and focused approach.” Yet the teachers in the low SES areas are often less paid or trained than those in well-off areas. Most students can’t fathom burdening the cost of college, so they don't aspire to go to college or sometimes even graduation. Rogan states that one of the biggest problems for children in low SES is the “self-fullfilling prophecy of failure”. A combination of lack of support at home and discrimination for things such as hair, shoes, or clothing can lead a child to feel like they do not belong or a loss of hope to do well. Although Brogan states that, “The detrimental effects of low SES on early childhood can be ameliorated by quality preschool programs, “ he does not go into depth regarding a solution.

Brogan, Ray. "Socioeconomic Status." Socioeconomic Status. The Gale Group, 23 Dec. 2009. Web. 14 Oct. 2015.

Chapter 2 of Eric Jensen’s book, “Teaching with Poverty in Mind," focuses on how poverty affects behavior and performance of students. He begins on a scientific note by explaining how DNA accounts for 30-50% of our behavior while the other 50-70% can be explained by environment.  The DNA sends signals to your genes which control various functions. These gene switches can be turned on or off by a different environmental factors such as stress or nutrition and can strengthen or impair things like aggression, immune function, learning, and memory. One of the biggest variables in a child’s influential environment is their social relationship. The author explains, “the complex web of social relationships students experience — with peers, adults in the school, and family members — exerts a much greater influence on their behavior than researchers had previously assumed.” The students’ core relationship with their parents or primary caregiver can begin to form a personality that is either secure and attached or the opposite. The author also talks about how the “school socialization process”  is a blend of pressure for students to be like their peers or risk social rejection and a quest for high social status which drives students to attempt to differentiate themselves by getting involved in extracurricular activities. In addition to genetics, social relationships, and environment, socioeconomic status plays a huge role in a child’s performance. Jensen provides the mnemonic EACH to describe the most significant risk factors affecting children raised in poverty: Emotional and Social Challenges, Acute and Chronic Stressors, Cognitive Lags, and Health and Safety Issues. The author feels confidents that, “this reality does not mean that success in school or life is impossible” and provides tips and tools for educators on how to help.

Houle, Brian. "How Obesity Relates to Socioeconomic Status." How Obesity Relates to Socioeconomic Status. PRB. Web. 14 Oct. 2015.

Brain Houle, assistant director of the Colorado University Population Center wrote an article for the PRB (Population Reference Bureau) about how Obesity Relates to Socioeconomic Status. He begins by referencing information found by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that say over one-third of U.S. adults are obese. The CDC defines obesity as a body mass index equal to or greater than 30. He goes on to explain how obesity is related to some of the leading causes of death including heart disease, some cancers, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. Next he refers to a study published in Social Science and Medicine that used date from 67 countries. He found that in lower income countries, people with higher SES are more likely to be obese while in well off countries the wealthy are less likely to be obese. To explain this inverse proportion the author states, “It may be that in lower-income countries higher SES leads to consuming high-calorie food and avoiding physical tough tasks. But in higher-income countries, individuals with higher SES may respond with healthy eating and regular exercise.” He believes that the problems of malnutrition are being replaced by problems of overconsumption that differentially affect SES groups. Houle also regards the lifestyle of high or low SES as an influential factor on obesity. He mentioned the growing rates of obesity in the transition to early adulthood. He found that, “ men with a middle-class upbringing and lifestyle were almost as likely to be obese as those brought up in working-poor households but working now in lower-status jobs”. Finally he concluded that these studies show that the stated factors can increase the risk of obesity based on socioeconomic status.



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