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Toward an equal level of educational attainment between deaf and hearing people in Sweden?
Örebro University, School of Health and Medical Sciences.
Örebro University, School of Health and Medical Sciences.
Örebro University, School of Health and Medical Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2690-6989
2009 (English)In: Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, ISSN 1081-4159, E-ISSN 1465-7325, Vol. 14, no 3, 312-323 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Various educational reforms in Sweden have resulted in a formally equivalent educational system for deaf and hearing pupils. Has this resulted in equal levels of educational attainment? This article compares 2,144 people born between 1941 and 1980 who attended a special education program for the deaf and 100,000 randomly chosen individuals from the total population born between 1941 and 1980. Data consist of registered information about the individuals in the year 2005. Results demonstrate that the deaf population has a lower level of educational attainment than the reference population. Women have a higher level of educational attainment than men, and younger people have a higher level than older people in each population. Neither sex, age category, nor immigrant background accounts for the variance in the level of educational attainment between the populations. The educational reforms have not been sufficient to reduce the unequal level of educational attainment between deaf and hearing people.

Education in Sweden for deaf and hearing people has differed historically. A significant difference is that deaf pupils attend special schools. However, the government has strived for equal education for the deaf and hearing. Various educational reforms have resulted in a formally equivalent educational system for deaf and hearing pupils. Has such formal equivalence also resulted in equal levels of educational attainment? The study presented here focuses on this question. Lower levels of unemployment and higher levels of income are associated with high levels of educational attainment (Welsh & Foster, 1991; Welsh & MacLeod-Gallinger, 1992).

To be defined as deaf in this article, a person is to have a hearing loss at an early age and to have attended a special school for the deaf. The definition of deaf used in other sources referred to here varies in parts such as Education in Sweden and Level of Educational Attainment for Deaf People, but most define a deaf person as one who has attended a special educational program for the deaf.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009. Vol. 14, no 3, 312-323 p.
National Category
Social Work
Research subject
Disability Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-8026DOI: 10.1093/deafed/enp001ISI: 000266957600004PubMedID: 19221118Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-67449103902OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-8026DiVA: diva2:240587
Available from: 2009-09-29 Created: 2009-09-29 Last updated: 2017-02-23Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Deaf people and the labour market in Sweden: education - employment - economy
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Deaf people and the labour market in Sweden: education - employment - economy
2010 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis focuses on deaf people’s educational attainment, position on the labour market and sources of revenue. These issues are interrelated, for instance a higher level of educational attainment seems to be associated with a lower unemployment rate and higher levels of income. The national context is Sweden and the Swedish welfare state in 2005.

All studies in the thesis compare a deaf population, consisting of 2,144 persons born between 1941 and 1980 who have attended a school for the deaf in Sweden, with a general reference population, consisting of 100,000 randomly chosen persons from the total Swedish population born between 1941 and 1980. Data for all studies consisted of registered information about the persons in the year 2005.

The results show that there are differences between the deaf and the reference population regarding level of educational attainment, position on the labour market and sources of revenue and disposable income, with the deaf population having a poorer position than the reference population in all areas. There are also differences between the workplaces of the deaf and the people in the reference population, and it is twice as common for people in the deaf population than for people in the reference population to have a higher level of educational attainment than is required for their occupation.

These differences between the deaf and the reference population cannot be associated with differences in the independent factors, as for instance sex, age and immigration background, for which the results have been adjusted. This thesis shows that being part of the deaf population appears to be of importance. Factors in conjunction with deafness that can increase our understanding of the differences between the deaf and the reference populations in an educational context, labour market context and economic context are discussed in the thesis.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro: Örebro universitet, 2010. 68 p.
Series
Studies from The Swedish Institute for Disability Research, ISSN 1650-1128 ; 32
Keyword
deaf, deafness, labour market, employment, workplace, level of educational attainment, disposable income, sources of revenue, register-based information
National Category
Social Work
Research subject
Disability Research
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-10389 (URN)978-91-7668-728-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2010-05-12, Hörsal L2, Örebro universitet, 701 82, Örebro, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2010-04-15 Created: 2010-04-15 Last updated: 2011-04-27Bibliographically approved

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