ISSN online: 2221-1616

Bulletin of the Institute of Sociology (Vestnik instituta sotziologii)

Research Article

Vyacheslav V. Matveev Candidate of Sociology, Associate professor,
Yaroslav-the-Wise Novgorod State University, Veliky Novgorod, Russia
ORCID ID=0000-0001-9355-4894
Alexey Y. Bolshakov Candidate of Technical Sciences
Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia, St. Petersburg, Russia
Reproduction of inequality in Russian education: state and prospects of research.
Vestnik instituta sotziologii. 2024. Vol. 15. No. 1. P. 215-235

Research was supported by the Russian Science Foundation and the St. Petersburg Science Foundation, grant 23-28-10010.

Дата поступления статьи: 13.04.2023
Topic: Problems of education in Russia

For citation:
Matveev V. V., Bolshakov A. Y. Reproduction of inequality in Russian education: state and prospects of research. Vestnik instituta sotziologii. 2024. Vol. 15. No. 1. P. 215-235


The article analyses the factors of inequality in Russian education based on the materials of modern sociological research. The data show that inequality in education tends to reproduce in two basic forms: a) unequal educational opportunities for different groups of students; b) unequal educational results. Within the framework of both forms there are factors (barriers) of inequality that prevent individuals from getting education. In the article, such factors of inequality include: a) grouping of students into different educational streams based on test results and academic performance, when such grouping is called tracking; b) specific attitudes of teachers towards students from different social groups, that can lead to a biased assessment of the educational achievements of schoolchildren; c) regional differences in the activities of educational institutions, that is associated with the type of settlements and their economic development; d) differences in family structures, among which are the quantitative size of the family, the order of birth of children, whether the family is complete or not; e) the value attitude of parents from different social strata to the education of their children; f) gender stereotypes during education, which subsequently lead to a gender imbalance in the professional structure in society; g) the development of students’ linguistic abilities, when children from different social strata express their knowledge and experience differently, which is reflected in educational grades and performance. New forms of inequality are emerging, such as digital inequality, the development of which increases social inequality. The development of information technology, IT-technologies leads to the emergence of new forms of digital inequality, including in cities and among the staff of the education system itself. The negative role of educational inequality for modern Russian society is shown, that can manifest itself in the weakening of solidarity of communities and groups of Russian society. Practices of overcoming the influence of inequality factors in education are presented, using the examples of schools operating in unfavourable socio-economic conditions (resistant schools). Empirical data on the increase in the number of young people from economically advantaged strata of the population entering the system of secondary vocational education are also analysed. The specificity of the considered factors of inequality in education strengthens the research attention to them.


educational inequality, factors of inequality in education, educational trajectory, educational policy, tracking



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