Research in Higher Education

, Volume 60, Issue 4, pp 553–575 | Cite as

Connecting School and Home: Examining Parental and School Involvement in Readiness for College Through Multilevel SEM

  • Chrystal A. George MwangiEmail author
  • Alberto F. Cabrera
  • Elizabeth R. Kurban


Parental involvement is widely acknowledged as a critical factor influencing the college choice process among families. What is not clear, though, is whether this parental driven factor also takes place at the school level along with school related factors. Using a national sample of 9th grade students drawn from about 900 schools, we found that parental involvement also operates at the school context along with a high school’s academic press. Moreover, at both individual- and school-level contexts, parental involvement creates a “college-going” cultural capital in the form of attainment of milestones towards college.


College choice Parental involvement Socio-economic status School academic press Structural equation modeling 



Our special thanks go to Ronald H. Heck, Professor of Educational Administration at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa. Ron graciously dedicated considerable time assisting us in unlocking the incredible potential multilevel structural equation modeling has in examining the impact of school and family contexts. We also thank the Research in Higher Education reviewers of this article whose feedback on earlier drafts improved our final manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chrystal A. George Mwangi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Alberto F. Cabrera
    • 2
  • Elizabeth R. Kurban
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Educational Policy, Research & AdministrationUniversity of Massachusetts AmherstAmherstUSA
  2. 2.Department of Counseling, Higher Education, and Special EducationCollege ParkUSA
  3. 3.Women in Engineering, A. James Clark School of EngineeringUniversity of Maryland, College ParkCollege ParkUSA

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