Volume 11, Issue 4 (1982)
Creating Change in Academic Self-Concept and School Behavior in Alienated Secondary School Students
Roger D. Zeeman
During the last decade, the problem of educating alienated, underachieving high school students has been an increasing concern of educators and psychologists (Glasser, 1969, 1972;Halpern, 1969; Mosher and Sprinthall, 1970; Paros and Hall, 1969; Postman and Weingartner,1973). The alienated student has been described as one whose “academic difficulties result from the fact that he is at odds with the value system implicit in the curricula, procedures and social structure of the school (Paros and Hall, 1969, p. 75).” Therefore, when one speaks of alienation,one inevitably speaks of failure in school. Academic failure frequently has devastating effects upon the student’s self-concept. Once the adolescent accepts the failure identity, it is difficult to change or modify (Glasser, 1972; Wylie, 1967). Halpern (1969) describes the behavior pattern which accompanies an anti-achievement syndrome as: (a) poor academic achievement, incomplete homework, lost books, and papers; (b) resistance to being helpful to others; (c) reduced social functioning engaging in many tasks alone, or extreme social over activity.
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