High school and university students’ opinions about politics [Full text]
Andrea Sólyom 
Abstract: This paper is a part of a larger thesis, which compares two groups’relations to politics, based on empirical sources. The main question, which can be answered only partly in this paper is, what are the particularities of the political culture of the studied populations? Results of study support that in several questions differences based on age – education level – locality proved to be stronger than ethnical ones, but the second type of differences are also significant i.e. in perceiving a few social gaps, trust in international institutions etc. Social background seems to play a sporadic role in shaping opinions about politics. Diffuse support for democracy is completed with weaker specific support. Romanian university students seem to have the most positive attitude toward direction and advances of Romanian democracy. Trust in institutions and perception of governments’ performance is connected, as a recent empirical study also confirmed based on the results of EVS and WVS of the last two decades (Tufiș 2010). Relations among the studied elements of political culture indicate that new directions and methods would be needed in order to find empirically supported explanations. Students develop/form their opinions about politics probably more based on the attitudes brought from socialization agents, than on their own information and experience.
Keywords: Attitudes, trust in institutions, social gaps, political opinions
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