The Influence of the Family on Adolescent Academic Achievement

Abbott, Krystyna
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This study investigated the relationship between specific family factors and adolescent academic achievement. Secondary data was used from the Iowa Youth and Family Project data set, a longitudinal project which at inception in 1989 consisted of White families from rural counties of Iowa with married parents, one target 7th grader, and a sibling within four years of the target's age (Family Transitions Project, 2011). Data for this thesis are from 1991, 1992, and 1994. A logistic regression analysis was used to analyze the relationship between parental alcohol use, selected family characteristics, and adolescent academic achievement. Multiple regression analyses were used to further describe the relationship between achievement and the three predictor blocks. In this sample, parental alcohol use did not have a significant relationship with achievement, but income per capita, target sex, and father marital happiness did. Furthermore, these results may have been impacted by the manner in which the data were analyzed (i.e., using the entire spectrum of alcohol use instead of high alcohol use only) and by the manner in which achieving was defined (i.e., a grade point average above 3.00 as achieving, and a grade point average below 3.00 as non-achieving). Future research can focus on identifying resiliency factors within families where both high drinking and academic achievement are present.

Achievement, Adolescent, Alcohol, Family, Income