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Parents’ Educational Beliefs and Children’s Early Academic Skills: Examining How Beliefs Operate across the SES Continuum

Elliott, Leanne (2015) Parents’ Educational Beliefs and Children’s Early Academic Skills: Examining How Beliefs Operate across the SES Continuum. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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In this study, we tested whether associations between parents’ educational beliefs and growth in their children’s achievement in kindergarten were moderated by socioeconomic status (SES) and whether this moderation effect was mediated by parental enrichment practices. Participants included 13,400 children drawn from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 2010-11 (ECLS-K:2011) and their parents. Educational beliefs included parents’ beliefs about the skills necessary for a child entering kindergarten and parents’ expectations for their children’s eventual educational attainment. SES was operationalized as both income and parental educational attainment, and enrichment was measured as academically-related practices in the home and community. Educational beliefs were significantly and positively related to achievement, such that children whose parents rated early skills as more important and held higher expectations for their children tended to have higher math and reading scores at the end of kindergarten. A marginally significant interaction emerged between school readiness beliefs and income such that beliefs were less predictive of achievement at higher levels of income. In addition, both school readiness beliefs and expectations were positively related to home enrichment practices, but only expectations were associated with community enrichment practices. However, neither enrichment measure mediated the educational beliefs by SES interaction. Implications and directions for future research are discussed.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Elliott, Leannelek79@pitt.eduLEK79
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairBachman, Heatherhbachman@pitt.eduHBACHMAN
Committee MemberVotruba-Drzal, Elizabethevotruba@pitt.eduEVOTRUBA
Committee MemberWang, Ming-temtwang@pitt.eduMTWANG
Date: 5 October 2015
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 24 June 2015
Approval Date: 5 October 2015
Submission Date: 4 August 2015
Access Restriction: 1 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 1 year.
Number of Pages: 70
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Psychology
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: educational beliefs, academic achievement, SES, kindergarten, school readiness
Date Deposited: 05 Oct 2015 13:13
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 14:29


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