Evaluation of grade distributions: A comparison of Jewish and Druze students in Israel

Clara Sabbagh, Rabbea Faher-Aladeen, Nura Resh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examines how students' evaluations of grade distribution in school are differentially shaped by socio-cultural conditions. Specifically, it investigates the extent to which Druze and Jewish students in Israel differ in their evaluations of the types of distribution rules that are actually and ideally preferred by teachers when they assign grades. Findings revealed that in both Jewish and Druze groups the achievement rules were ranked highest in terms of the actual and ideal ways of determining their grades. These were followed by the personality rules, and lastly by the ascriptive/particularistic rules. Thus, students in these groups share to a large extent their view about the actual and ideal grading practices. At the same time, Jewish students, who live in a market-driven society characterized by individual and competitive relations, ascribe stronger importance to meritocratic rules. In contrast, Druze students, who live in a highly homogeneous environment based on ascriptive status and solidarity relations, have a greater tendency than Jews to think that grading should be guided by particularistic/ascriptive types of rules. A structural analysis of grade distribution rule preferences revealed that they were similarly measured across groups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)313-337
Number of pages25
JournalSocial Psychology of Education
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 2004

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was partially supported by the Faculty of Education at the University of Haifa. Helene Hogri contributed her invaluable editorial assistance.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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