Effects of inequality, family and school on mathematics achievement: Country and student differences

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Abstract

Inequality, family and school characteristics were linked to student achievement as shown by multi-level analyses of 107,975 15 year olds' mathematics tests and questionnaires in 41 countries. Equal distribution of country and school resources were linked to higher mathematics scores. Students scored higher in families or schools with more resources (SES, native born, two parents, more educational materials, higher SES schoolmates, female schoolmates, class time, educated teachers) or beneficial intangible processes (communication, discipline, teacher-student relationships). Students living with grandparents or siblings (especially older ones) scored lower. Physical family resource variables showed similar results across countries, supporting the social reproduction hypothesis for physical resources. In richer countries, intangible processes had stronger links with mathematics achievement, suggesting that greater availability of public physical resources raises the value of complementary intangible processes, which can help explain the Heyneman-Loxley effect of stronger family effects in richer countries Copyright © 2010 The University of North Carolina Press.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1645-1676
JournalSocial Forces
Volume88
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2010

Citation

Chiu, M. M. (2010). Effects of inequality, family and school on mathematics achievement: Country and student differences. Social Forces, 88(4), 1645-1676.

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