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Organisations, factors and codes: a methodological enquiry into Bernstein's theory of educational transmissions

Tyler, William Bernard (1983) Organisations, factors and codes: a methodological enquiry into Bernstein's theory of educational transmissions. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis, University of Kent. (doi:10.22024/UniKent/01.02.86226) (KAR id:86226)


Despite the wide currency of Basil Bernstein's theory of educational transmissions and its power to explain the 'deep' structural transformations of schools and other organizations, testing his theory empirically has proven to be both difficult and inconclusive. This appears to be because the principles of structure (or 'codes') might be expected to intrude into the very methodologies and instruments of analysis of organizational study. Findings carried out in other areas of organizational research (notably those in the 'Aston' tradition) appear to corroborate this suspected effect, particularly where it has been shown that certain empirical measures of structural variables exhibit predictable levels of internal consistency or reliability, depending on the sample of organisations being studied. The explanation of this phenomenon would appear to 1 i e in the patterns of redundancy (or scale re liability' that can be derived from the more general informational theory of regulation of Ashby - which can be shown in turn to have some clear points of correspondence with Bernstein's theory of codes. It is therefore suggested that any statistic of correlation between structural properties representing 'classifications' or 'frames' should be consistent with this more general theory by tapping these 'deeper' features of organisational structuring. Such a statistic is the canonical correlation coefficient which allows a researcher (by multivariate methods) to measure the degree of redundancy between two sets of variables at a level which is not accessible by the analysis of single correlations. This method was applied to variables representing different categories of structure from four sets of organizational data available through the Aston Databank and associated published reports. Very high (and significant) levels of correlation were found between canonical variates particularly in the more rigorous and detailed, tests with the two large heterogeneous samples of work organizations (the original Aston Study and Child's National Study). In each case this method yielded much higher levels of interdependence among structural properties than those indicated by conventional methods of regression and factorial analysis. The implications of these findings in so far as they lend support to Bernstein's theory of educational transmissions, as well as their import for general problems of organisational theory and research, are discussed in the concluding chapter.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy (PhD))
DOI/Identification number: 10.22024/UniKent/01.02.86226
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Uncontrolled keywords: Education & training
Subjects: L Education > LC Special aspects of education > LC5201 Education extension. Adult education. Continuing education
Divisions: Divisions > Directorate of Education > School of Education
SWORD Depositor: SWORD Copy
Depositing User: SWORD Copy
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2019 16:36 UTC
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2022 11:29 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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