For an overview of consensus theories of crime and deviance please see these two posts: (1) Consensus and strain theory, (2) subcultural theories of deviance. A theory is not a fact, it is an effort to explain something. Functionalism is essentially a conservative idea, based on the view that social change is a gradual process that happens naturally when the consensus shifts. One of the main purposes of education, according to the consensus approach of functionalism, is that of socialization. In contrast to conflict theories, consensus theories are those that see people in society as having shared interests and society functioning on the basis of there being broad consensus on its norms and values. This is most associated with functionalism. The unified argument of consensus theories is that the education system is meritocratic. Consensus theories Functionalists, New Right, Postmodernists etc state that education has two major functions: Secondary Socialisation and helping people gain work. Functionalism. Firstly, it cannot be ignored that one of the main principles of the theory is that society is based upon consensus, - agreement between norms and values. There are various various social science theories that relate to education. Agreement between groups and individuals in society allow it to work effectively – for the benefit of all. These are; consensus, conflict, structural functionalist and interactionist theories. Consensus Theories. Nevertheless, its macro theory approach puts the education system in context and is therefore a theory which is notable when discussing the role of the education system. Conflict theory sees the purpose of education as maintaining social inequality and preserving the power of those who dominate society. Prior to graduate school, I taught sixth grade and was a part of a team develop-ing an environmental education curriculum that included a week long residen-tial camp. Reading: Functionalist Theory on Education. Consensus theories in sociology arise from a general agreement about what is considered ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ in society and a generally shared belief in the essential norms and values of that society.. Secondary socialisation: learning the universalistic values of wider society through education, media and other institutions. An essay plan on Consensus Theory for the A Level Sociology Crime and Deviance Module.. For more examples of short answer, 10 mark and essay questions, please see my main page on ‘Exams, essays and short answer questions‘. Consensus theories argue that this general agreement in society is a good thing. This is described by Bilton (1996: 12) as the process through which individuals ‘learn the ways of thought and behaviour considered appropriate in society’. 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