Social stratifying Kazakhstan: A social reproduction analysis of higher education internationalisation

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This article examines how the privileged classes ensure successful educational outcomes for their children by pursuing English international higher education. While studies show that social class formations are not clear in developing countries, it has been established that access to international education is dominated by those from high socioeconomic groups. We use a study from Kazakhstan to investigate the processes students underwent to access English universities. We utilise Bourdieu’s conceptual tools to examine processes of cultural capital acquisition and assimilation by students to enhance future social positioning. We highlight (1) educational resources at home, (2) ability to use the English language, and (3) access to international English university education as the pillars of social class reproduction. We argue that the process is skewed towards students from privileged classes and following merit informed policies only enhances the accrual of capital by this social group and promotes social stratification.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-20
Number of pages20
JournalBritish Journal of Sociology
Publication statusPublished - Jan 9 2024


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