Author: Morgan, Paul L., Farkas, George, Hillemeier, Marianne M, & Maczuga, Steve

Title: Science Achievement Gaps Begin Very Early, Persist, and Are Largely Explained by Modifiable Factors

University Affiliation: Pennsylvania State University; University of California, Irvine


Research Question:

  1. How large are general knowledge gaps occurring in kindergarten, and to what extent do these continue to occur by the end of first grade?
  2. As children move from third to eighth grade, what is their typical initial level (i.e., intercept) and rate of achievement growth (i.e., slope) in science?
  3. Are these gaps consistent with stable, cumulative (i.e., gap increasing), or compensatory (i.e., gap decreasing) achievement growth trajectories? How do these initial third-grade science achievement levels and third- to eighth-grade growth trajectories vary by children’s race, ethnicity, language, and family SES status? How are a more general set of child- and family-level characteristics, including parenting quality, related to typical levels of third-grade science achievement in the United States as well as to achievement growth from third to eighth grade?
  4. To what extent are the third-grade science achievement gaps, as well as third- to eighth-grade science achievement growth, explained by such modifiable factors as general knowledge, reading and mathematics achievement, and behavioral self-regulation? How much of children’s later science achievement can be predicted by their first-grade achievement-related knowledge, skills, and behaviors?
  5. With the aforementioned first-grade predictive factors accounted for, how important are the modifiable factors of children’s subsequent reading and mathematics achievement, and behavioral self-regulation at each of third, fifth, and eighth grades to their science achievement during these grades?
  6. To what extent does a school’s academic climate and racial, ethnic, and economic composition explain children’s science achievement, over and above the afore- mentioned child- and family-level factors?
  7. Published: Yes

    Journal Name or Institutional Affiliation: Educational Researcher

    Journal Entry: Vol. 45 No. 1 Pp. 18-35

    Year: 2016


    Scholarship Type Journal Article Empirical Research

    Keywords: Achievement Gap, Minorities, Poverty, SES, Science

    Regions National

    Methodologies: Quantitative

    Research Designs: Secondary Data

    Method of Analysis: Multilevel Models

    Sampling Frame: Kindergarten Students

    Sample Types: Nationally Representative

    Unit of Analysis: Parent, School, Student

    Data Types: Quantitative-Longitudinal

    Data Description:


    Entry Created at: 2016-06-23 18:07:15 UTC
    Last Update: 2016-08-01 17:00:29 UTC