The Relationship Between Maternal Education and Children's Academic Outcomes: A Theoretical Framework

Jessica F. Harding, Pamela A. Morris, Diane Hughes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The importance of maternal education for children's academic outcomes is widely recognized, and yet the multiple potential mechanisms that explain this relationship are underexplored. The authors integrate theories of human, cultural, and social capital with 2 developmental psychology theories-bioecological theory and developmental niche theory-to draw attention to how maternal education may influence children's academic outcomes through a range of parenting mechanisms, some of which have been largely neglected in research. This framework provides a more complete picture of how maternal education shapes proximal and distal influences on children's academic outcomes and the ways in which these mechanisms interact and reinforce one another across time and context. The implications of this framework for future family research are then discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)60-76
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Marriage and Family
Volume77
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2015

Keywords

  • Ecological
  • Education
  • Intergenerational transmission
  • Parental investment/involvement
  • Parenting
  • Social capital

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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