Sources of evaluation of parental behaviors as predictors of achievement outcomes
Parents contribute to their children’s academic achievements by supporting their basic psychological needs. Parents’ need supporting behaviors (NSB) were expected to predict positive academic outcomes such as students’ academic performance and persistence intentions. The present study tested the contribution of parental NSB by distinguishing which of the source of evaluation (parent or adolescent) or specific NSB (autonomy support, involvement, structure) was a better predictor of youths’ academic performance and persistence intentions. This prospective study used a sample of 435 mother–adolescent dyads and 246 father–adolescent dyads, who completed two questionnaires a year apart. Results suggested that poor agreement between sources precluded the adoption of a multitrait-multimethod model. Using distinct factors for mothers, fathers, and adolescents to evaluate each NSB, different predictions were found for each outcome. Our results showed stronger contributions for paternal behaviors than for maternal ones, from the perspective of both students and their parents. These findings are examined in light of theories and research on parenting and education.
KeywordsAcademic achievement Adolescents Parents Psychological need support Multiple informants
Funding was provided by Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (Grant No. 435-2013-0467).
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