Understanding Student Misconduct in Urban Schools: Is There a Need for a Cross-National Approach?

  • Sophie PascalEmail author
  • Michel Janosz
  • Isabelle Archambault
  • Marie-Christine Brault
Part of the International Study of City Youth Education book series (SCYE, volume 2)


Using a 9-city sample of 10th grade students (N = 15,941), this chapter empirically demonstrates from several different angles the relevance of adopting a cross-national approach to the study of student misconduct in urban schools. First, the amplitude and expression of student misconduct vary across cities. If no such variations were observed, pursuing a cross-national investigation would seem somewhat less relevant. A second evidence is provided by a comparison of the relative influence of individuals’ factors, schools, and cities with regard to student misconduct, which indicates that there is more variability between cities than between schools within these cities. The third indicator that supports the relevance of considering country contexts consists of observed differences between cities in the nature and the importance of some student, family, and school determinants of misconduct. Our results support the interest for a cross-national approach to better understand student misconduct. They bring to light the interest of identifying city-specific factors as well as city-varying school-specific factors responsible for the observed differences relating to the influence of student, family, and school composition factors.


Cross-national study School misconduct Multilevel analyses 



The research reported in this chapter was supported by a grant received from the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Société et culture (FRQSC) by the School Environment Research Group (SERG) at the University of Montréal.


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Sophie Pascal
    • 1
    Email author
  • Michel Janosz
    • 1
  • Isabelle Archambault
    • 1
  • Marie-Christine Brault
    • 2
  1. 1.École de PsychoéducationUniversité de MontréalMontréalCanada
  2. 2.Département des sciences humaines et socialesUniversité du Québec à ChicoutimiChicoutimiCanada

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