Abstract

Over the past 60 years, the gap between social classes in terms of wealth and income has been growing rapidly, and in turn has created a great inequality in life chances between the upper and lower class. Robert Putnam explores this gap in his scholarly study “Our Kids”. In this study, Putnam compares two social classes (low and high, measured in terms of parental education level) who attend the same high school. Putnam then compares the opportunities students have in and out of school and how this varies based on social class. The current study involves looking at this inequality gap in suburban Ohio cities: Hudson and Ravenna. Hudson has a population of 22,448 with 68.9% having a Bachelor's degree or greater and only 3.3% of the population living below the poverty line. This compares to Ravenna, with a population of only 11,643, where only 13.3% of individuals have a Bachelor’s degree or higher and 21.4% live below the poverty line. We hypothesized that the city with the lower socioeconomic status (Ravenna) would have more barriers to learning than the city with the higher SES (Hudson). Our study involved conducting internet database searches and in-depth interviews of students and teachers in both cities regarding how they view the experience of a typical high schooler in that city over several variables, such as extracurricular opportunities. Responses and findings resulted in confirming our hypothesis, that high school students from Hudson had more opportunities from the city compared with Ravenna.

Modified Abstract

Over the past 60 years, the gap between social classes in terms of wealth and income has been growing rapidly, and in turn has created a great inequality in life chances between the upper and lower class. The current study is a continuation of Robert Putnam’s scholarly study “Our Kids” where we compared two Ohio cities: Hudson and Ravenna. In Hudson, 68.9% of individuals obtain a Bachelor's degree or higher compared to Ravenna, where only 13.3% of individuals have a Bachelor’s degree or higher. We hypothesized that Ravenna, having a lower socioeconomic status would have more barriers to learning than Hudson,with the higher socioeconomic status. Our study involved conducting database searches and in-depth interviews regarding the experience of a typical high schooler in that city.

Research Category

Social Science/Education/Public Health

Primary Author's Major

Speech Pathology & Audiology

Mentor #1 Information

Dr. Richard Adams

Presentation Format

Poster

Start Date

21-3-2017 1:00 PM

Biographical Sketch.docx (44 kB)
Group Biographical Sketch

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Poster

Research Area

Community-Based Research | Inequality and Stratification | Sociology

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Mar 21st, 1:00 PM

“Our Kids” An Extension of Robert Putnam’s Study of the Wealth Gap Inequality in America Hudson & Ravenna: Miles Apart Yet Worlds Apart

Over the past 60 years, the gap between social classes in terms of wealth and income has been growing rapidly, and in turn has created a great inequality in life chances between the upper and lower class. Robert Putnam explores this gap in his scholarly study “Our Kids”. In this study, Putnam compares two social classes (low and high, measured in terms of parental education level) who attend the same high school. Putnam then compares the opportunities students have in and out of school and how this varies based on social class. The current study involves looking at this inequality gap in suburban Ohio cities: Hudson and Ravenna. Hudson has a population of 22,448 with 68.9% having a Bachelor's degree or greater and only 3.3% of the population living below the poverty line. This compares to Ravenna, with a population of only 11,643, where only 13.3% of individuals have a Bachelor’s degree or higher and 21.4% live below the poverty line. We hypothesized that the city with the lower socioeconomic status (Ravenna) would have more barriers to learning than the city with the higher SES (Hudson). Our study involved conducting internet database searches and in-depth interviews of students and teachers in both cities regarding how they view the experience of a typical high schooler in that city over several variables, such as extracurricular opportunities. Responses and findings resulted in confirming our hypothesis, that high school students from Hudson had more opportunities from the city compared with Ravenna.