Connection Between Socioeconomic Status and Academic Achievements

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There are many relationships that can be found between socioeconomic status and academic achievements in students. (no period) (Woolfolk, Winne, & Perry, 2000). There has been much research evidence found to show that high-SES students of all ethnic groups display higher average levels of achievement and stay in school longer than low-SES students. (Alwin & Thornton, 1984; Goleman, 1988; White, 1982).

Other research studies have found that when SES is measured solely in terms of parents education, income, or occupation, the relationship between SES and achievement is stronger than when it is measured in terms of family atmosphere variables such as parents attitudes toward education, their aspirations for their children, or the intellectual activities of the family. (Woolfolk, Winne, & Perry, 2000). Ultimately then, this shows that the actual attitudes and behaviours of the childs family life is more important than the lack of income. good On a personal experience, I strongly agree with this finding. I do not come from a high-income family, but because my parents have always placed a strong emphasis on the value of education, I feel it is the family atmosphere I was raised in that has allowed me to reach high academic achievements. I can still recall from my childhood of my parents constant lectures on the importance of education, their efforts to take me to the library,or to enroll me in extra-curricular academic activities. well done!

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There are four theories explaining the relationship between low socioeconomic status and lower school achievement among low-SES students. They are low expectations - low self-esteem, learned helplessness, resistance cultures and tracking.

Low expectations V low self-esteem is related to the teacher and classmates assuming that the student is not bright, due to wearing old clothes, speaking ungrammatically, or being less familiar with books and school activities. In the classroom, the teacher may protect the low-SES student from embarrassment of having the wrong answers by not calling on them, or because they make the teacher feel uncomfortable, leading to low expectations of the student. The final result leads the low-SES student to have low self-esteem in which he/she believes they are not good at schoolwork. (Elrich, 1994).

Learned helplessness is the expectation, based on previous experiences with a lack of control, that all ones efforts will lead to failure. (Woolfolk, Winne, & Perry, 2000). Low-SES students are affected by this if they fail continually and come to believe that it is hopeless for them to do well in school. Furthermore, they may feel it is normal to quit because they compare themselves to their friends and relatives who never finished school (Woolfolk, Winne, & Perry, 2000). Learned helplessness clearly affects academic achievement.

Resistance culture is another theory that explains the relationship between low socioeconomic status and lower academic achievement. Resistance culture is defined as "group values and beliefs about refusing to adopt the behaviours and attitudes of the majority culture" (Woolfolk, Winne, & Perry, 2000, p 157). (This is a direct quote from the text. When you quote directly from the text you must put quotation marks around the copied material and provide a page number in your citation. 🙂 Members who belong to this culture will reject the behaviours that make them successful in school, the sole purpose to maintain their identity and their status within the group. Some such behaviours are studying, cooperating with teachers, or going to class. For a student rejecting these critical school behaviours, there is no doubt that this would cause low academic achievement. Resistance culture groups are linked to poor Hispanic American, Native American, and African American groups(Woolfolk, Winne, & Perry (2000).

Another theory is tracking, which occurs when low-SES students experience a different academic socialization, in that they are actually taught differently (Woolfolk, Winne, & Perry (2000). Students who are tracked into low-ability or general classes may never be encouraged to think and create, but rather to memorize and be passive. Since low-SES students receive an inferior education, their outcome of academic skills are inferior and their life chances are limited. Tracking clearly shows that low-SES students are put at an unfair disadvantage causing them to acquire lower academic achievement.

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