Social Psychology of Education

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 375–397 | Cite as

‘The trouble with Year 10’. 13 – 16 year old school students’ attitudes to higher education

  • Pam Maras
  • Kirsty Carmichael
  • Swatee Patel
  • Jennifer Wills
Article

Abstract

This study looked at the impact of Widening Participation interventions on the attitudes of young people towards higher education. A total of 2731 adolescents aged 13–16 years completed a self-report measure of their attitudes to higher education, general and academic self concept and identification with school, family and peers. This was matched with data on the students’ academic attainment and social backgrounds. As expected, attainment scores were significantly positively correlated with take up of Widening Participation activities aimed at increasing participation in higher education, attitudes towards going to university and academic motivation. However, attainment was negatively correlated with perceptions of family attending university and identification with family. Regression analyses found that perceptions of family views about attending university were not a predictor of taking part in Widening Participation activities but were a predictor of attitudes towards higher education. Students in Year 10 aged 14–15 were significantly more negative on most factors than either older or younger students.

Keywords

social identity self concept motivation attitudes to higher education 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Action on Access (2005). Widening participation: A rough guide for higher education providers. London: DfES.Google Scholar
  2. Archer L., Yamashita H. (2003) ‘Knowing their limits?’ Identities, inequalities and inner city school leavers’ post-16 aspirations. Journal of Ecucation Policy 18(1): 53–69CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Ary D.V., Duncan T.E., Biglan A., Metzler C.W., Noell J.W., Smolkowski K. (1999) Development of adolescent problem behaviour. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 27(2): 141–150CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Baldwin S.A., Hoffman J.P. (2002) The dynamics of self-esteem: a growth curve analysis. Journal of Youth and Adolescence 31(2): 101–113CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Ball S., Maguire M., Macrae S. (2000) Choice, pathways and transitions post-16: new youth, new economies in the global city. Routledge Falmer, LondonGoogle Scholar
  6. Bornholt L., Ingram A. (2001) Personal and social identity in children’s self-concepts about drawing. Educational Psychology 21(2): 151–166CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bornholt L., Gientzotis J., Cooney G. (2004) Understanding choice behaviours: pathways from school to university with changing aspirations and opportunities. Social Psychology of Education 7: 211–228CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Brown R., Hinkle S., Ely P., Fox-Cardamone L., Maras P., Taylor L. (1992) Recognising group diversity: individualist-collectivist and autonomous-relational orientations and their implications for intergroup processes. British Journal of Social Psychology 31: 327–342Google Scholar
  9. Bui K.V.T. (2002) First-Generation college students at a four-year university: background characteristics, reasons for pursuing higher education, and first year experiences. College Student Journal 36: 3–11Google Scholar
  10. Canals J., Vigil-Colet A., Chico E., Marti-Cenneberg C. (2005) Personality changes during adolescence: the role of gender and pubertal development. Personality and Individual Differences 39(1): 179–188CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Chen H., Mechanic D., Hansell S. (1998) A longitudinal study of self-awareness and depressed mood in adolescence. Journal of Youth and Adolescence 27(6): 719–734CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Clark-Carter, D. (1997). Doing quantitative psychological research: from design to report. Hove, East Sussex: Taylor & Francis, Psychology Press.Google Scholar
  13. Colarossi L.G., Eccles J.S. (2000) A prospective study of adolescents’ peer support: gender differences and the influences of parental relationships. Journal of Youth and Adolescence 29(6): 661–678CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Demie F., Butler R., Taplin A. (2002) Educational achievement and the disadvantage factor: Empirical evidence. Educational Studies 28(2): 101–110CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Department for Education and Skills (2003). The impact of parental involvement on children’s education. Leaflet for teachers. London: DfES.Google Scholar
  16. Department for Education and Skills (2005). Education improvement partnerships: local collaborations for school improvement and better service delivery. Research topic paper. London: DfES.Google Scholar
  17. Eisenberg N., Cumberland A., Guthrie I.K., Murphy B.C., Shepard S.A. (2005) Age changes in prosocial responding and moral reasoning in adolescence and early adulthood. Journal of Research on Adolescence 15(3): 235–260CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Ecole Superieure ce commerce international du Pas de Calais (ESCIP). On-line. Available http://www.escip.frGoogle Scholar
  19. Field T., Diego M., Snders C. (2002) Adolescents’ parent and peer relationships. Adolescence 37(145): 121–130Google Scholar
  20. Flouri A., Buchanan A. (2003) What predicts father’s involvement with their children? A prospective study of intact families. British Journal of Developmental Psychology 21: 81–98CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Fogel S.F. (2003) The role of college preparation programmes on the self-efficacy, goal orientation, academic achievement, and college enrolment of urban minority students: a causal modelling approach. Dissertation Abstracts International Section A: Humanities and Social Sciences 63: 4220Google Scholar
  22. Hay I., Ashman A.F. (2003) The development of adolescents’ emotional stability and general self concept: the interplay of parents, peers and gender. International Journal of Disability, Development and Education 50(1): 77–92CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Heiner M. (1981) Life planning and schooling: the influence of socially typical and individually chosen orientations on the educational aspirations of 10th grade students. Koelner Zeitschrift fuer Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie 33: 504–532Google Scholar
  24. Higher Education Funding Council for England (2003). Strategic plan 2003–2008. London: HMSO.Google Scholar
  25. Hill N.E., Castellino D.R., Lansford J.E., Nowlin P., Dodge K.A., Bates J.E., Pettit G.S. (2004) Parent academic involvement as related to school behaviour, achievement, and aspirations: demographic variations across adolescence. Child Development 75(5): 1491–1509CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Howard T. (2002) “A tug of war for our minds:” African American high school students’ perceptions of their academic identities and college aspirations. High School Journal 87: 4–17CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Kenny M.E., Bledsoe M. (2005) Contributions of the relational context to career adaptability among urban adolescents. Journal of Vocational Behaviour 66(2): 257–272CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Kinder, K., Wakefield, A., & Wilkin, A. (1996) Talking back: pupil views on dissafection (pp. 1–38). Slough, Berkshire: The National Foundation for Educational Research.Google Scholar
  29. Koller, O. (2000). Goal orientations: their impact on academic learning and their development during early adolescence. In J. Heckhausen (Ed.), Motivational psychology of human development. Developing motivation and motivating development. Berlin: North-Holland.Google Scholar
  30. Kysel F., West A., Scott G. (1992) Leaving school: attitudes, aspirations and destinations of fifth-year leavers in Tower Hamlets. Educational Research 34: 87–105Google Scholar
  31. Laplan R.T., Tucker B., Kim S., Kosciulek J.F. (2003) Preparing rural adolescents for post-high school transitions. Journal of Counselling and Development 81: 329–342Google Scholar
  32. Larson R.W., Moneta G., Richards M.H., Wilson S. (2002) Continuity, stability and change in daily emotional experience across adolescence. Child Development 73(4): 1151–1165CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Loukas A., Robinson S. (2004) Examining the moderating role of perceived social climate in early adolescent adjustment. Journal of Research on Adolescence 14(2): 209–233CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Maras P., Lewis P., Simonds L. (1999) Elephants, donuts and hamburgers: young children co-operating to co-operate and co-operating to compete in two primary schools. Educational Psychology 19(3): 245–258CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Mooney E. (2005) Barriers and bridges: access to education for internally displaced children. The Brookings Institute, The Washington USAGoogle Scholar
  36. Net Aid (2006). Access to education. On-line. Available http://www.netaid.org/global_poverty/education/).Google Scholar
  37. O’Brian S.F., Bierman K.L. (1988) Conceptions and perceived influence of peer groups: interviews with preadolescents and adolescents. Child Development 59: 1360–1365CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Office of National Statistics (2004). Exam results differ by social status. On-line. Available http://www.statistics.gov.uk/cci/nugget.asp?id=1003.Google Scholar
  39. Pedersen S. (2005) Urban adolescents’ out-of-school activity profiles: associations with youth, family, and school transition characteristics. Applied Developmental Science 9(2): 107–125CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Promoting Education in African Schools (2006). peas.org.uk.Google Scholar
  41. Quinn, J., Casey, L., Knox, H., McAleavy, G., Noble, J., O’Hagen, C., Saunders, D., Slack, K., Thexton, W., & Thomas, L. (2005). Rethinking “working class drop out”. Staffordshire University Press, May.Google Scholar
  42. Sacker A., Schoon I., Bartley M. (2002) Social inequality in educational achievement and psychosocial adjustment throughout childhood: magnitude and mechanisms. Social Science and Medicine 55(5): 863–880CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Sisk C.L., Zehr J.L. (2005) Pubertal hormones organize the adolescent brain and behaviour. Frontiers in Neuroendocrinology 26: 163–174CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Tajfel, H. (1978). The psychological structure of intergroup relations. In H. Tajfel (Ed.), Differentiation between social groups: studies in the social psychology of intergroup relations. London, UK: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  45. Tajfel, H. & Turner, J.C. (1979). An integrative theory of intergroup conflict. In W.G. Austin & S. Worchel (Eds.), The social psychology of intergroup relations. Chicago, IL USA: Nelson Hall.Google Scholar
  46. Voelkl K.E. (1996) Measuring students’ identification with school: identification with school questionnaire. Educational and Psychological Measurement 56: 760–770CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Walters K., Bowen G.L. (1997) Peer group acceptance and academic performance among adolescents participating in a dropout prevention program. Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal 14(6): 413–426CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Yazejian N.M. (1999) The relationship between school identification and dropping out of school. Dissertation Abstracts International Section A: Humanities and Social Sciences 59(8-A): 2857Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pam Maras
    • 1
  • Kirsty Carmichael
    • 1
  • Swatee Patel
    • 1
  • Jennifer Wills
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Psychology and CounsellingUniversity of GreenwichLondonUK

Personalised recommendations