INTRODUCTORY READING: SET TEXTS FOR STUDENT PURCHASE AND OTHER PRELIMINARY READING
(The most cost-effective way of purchasing the books below is through a French internet bookshop such as http://www.amazon.fr , http://www.fnac.com , or http://www.chapitre.com . You should order them as soon as possible, as sometimes it takes time for internet bookshops to restock)
To familiarise yourself with the debates and issues we will be considering in class, students should purchase and read the following books in advance. Do not worry if there are passages you do not understand to begin with – that’s part of what the lessons are for. You will find the seminars more productive if you are at the stage of ‘re-reading’ and reflection (we will be using the books in class):
François Dubet, L’Ecole des chances. Qu’est-ce qu’une école juste? (Paris: Seuil, 2004)
Christian Baudelot and Roger Establet, L’élitisme républicain. L’école française à l’épreuve des comparaisons internationales (Paris: Seuil, 2009)
Hugo Coniez, La Faillite des universités françaises? (Paris: Ellipses, 2008) [for introductory purposes, you need read only up to p. 105, and you can skip pp. 84-93 on the recruitment of university lecturers]
I will provide contextual background to these discussions in the seminars, and we will also explore how debates and policies have developed in the years since their publication.
If you are not already familiar with the French education system you can find a useful initial overview of it at the Eurypedia website (place your mouse over the 'countries' button and select France). A full range of other contextual information can be found on the website of the Ministry for Education. If you would like a sense of what French teachers are currently debating and discussing, you could visit the site Café pédagogique .